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Asian Chemical Connections

The Iran-West Nuclear Deal: An Update

By John Richardson MANY thanks to a good friend of the blog, Mark Mark Mirosevic-Sorgo, managing director of the Singapore-headquartered shipbrokers Braemar Quincannon for what follows – some excellent analysis of what the Iran-West nuclear deal might mean for the petrochemicals business, which follows on from our earlier post. Here are Mark’s comments: It has […]

Bio-based Local Ethylene Plants A Good Alternative

By John Richardson THE proven approach for success in petrochemicals is, of course, to find cheap feedstocks somewhere and build a world-scale cracker complex. That “somewhere” doesn’t necessarily have to be close to the final customers in emerging markets. For example, the Middle East and more more recently the US can afford to ship large […]

European Chemicals: Rescue Efforts Continue

By John Richardson THE battle to save the European chemicals industry from widespread plant closures  is wider than just at the Grangemouth complex in Scotland, the UK In Holland, for example, the Dutch chemicals industry trade body – Vereniging van de Nederlandse Chemische Industrie (VNCI) – is asking for subsidies and tax breaks from the Dutch […]

South Korea’s Demographic Challenges

By John Richardson THE blog has been long on South Korea ever since its first visit in 1997.  Its economic achievements since the horrors of the Korean War are nothing short of amazing. Bereft of natural resources, all it has had to rely has been its intellectual capital and, wow, look at how it has […]

US Housing Recovery? What Recovery?

  By John Richardson A SUSTAINED US housing recovery is vital for the global petrochemicals industry because, without it, far too much of the 64% of ethylene capacity, which is due to be added in the States, will have to be exported in the form of derivatives. One of the reasons is that some $16,000 […]

The Rebirth Of Naphtha Cracking

  By John Richardson Might cracking naphtha in Asia, Europe, and perhaps even the US, once again become so attractive that it starts to challenge the big advantage currently being enjoyed by cracking ethane? Yes, perhaps. Opportunities could arise to take advantage of distressed supplies of naphtha from refiners under severe loss-making pressure. Shutting many […]

Guaranteeing The “Trickle Down” Effect

By John Richardson THE average-paid worker in a US company has to work for more than a month to earn what her or his CEO will earn in just one hour, according to this video from Adam Mordecai – the social and political commentator. And in 2012, the richest 1% of the population took home […]

Grangemouth Viewed Through A Wider Lens

By John Richardson THROUGH the narrow lens of stand-alone cost competitiveness, the threatened refinery and petrochemicals complex in Grangemouth, Scotland the UK, (see picture) can be viewed as having a very questionable long-term future. For example, Britain’s refineries are viewed as small, old and lacking in sophistication. And it can be argued that they are […]

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