Are We On A Different Planet?

Business, China, Economics, Environment

“Hello, my name is John Richardson.
I had an accident, and I woke up in 1973.
Am I mad, in a coma, or back in time?
Whatever’s happened, it’s like I’ve landed on a different planet.”
Before you think I’ve been at the methanol again, please follow this link to the fantastic BBC TV series, Life On Mars, where a UK police officer living in 2006 is in a road accident and is transported back in time to 1973. This is definitely not a waste of polycarbonate – buy the DVD.
Like Sam Tyler of the series, it felt like I was back in time this morning when reading of the IEA report on an oil-supply crunch in five years.
It was back in 1973, if you remember, that an oil crisis triggered the US recession of 1973-75.
William Poole, president of the Reserve Bank of St Loius, argues that high oil prices this time around haven’t triggered a recession because of factors such as low inflation. This is largely the result of China and the rest of the developing world driving down costs.
But how long will this continue if the IEA is right? And how will the developing world reconcile itself to not having enough raw materials to sustain the huge boom in demand for the things made, ultimately, from oil? What will be the social, political and economic implications of the looming supply crunch on ever-more wealthy populations demanding the same mass-consumption lifestyles that westerners enjoy?

PREVIOUS POST

No more pessimism for a couple of weeks

30/05/2007

“Hello, my name is John Richardson. I had an accident, and I woke up in 19...

Learn more
NEXT POST

Rebranding the chemicals industry

17/07/2007

“Hello, my name is John Richardson. I had an accident, and I woke up in 19...

Learn more
More posts
Complacency, LLDPE and plastic waste: A collapse in demand
19/11/2018

By John Richardson THE TECHNICAL people, those with PHDs in polymer science who have also spent year...

Read
Iran-China PE trade and the sanctions: short term dip but long term big increase
15/11/2018

By John Richardson IRANIAN exports of PE to China will likely suffer a temporary decline because of ...

Read
Big jump in China PE imports points to destocking as demand prospects weaken
12/11/2018

By John Richardson CHINA’S official PE imports and exports are finally out for January-September 2...

Read
Major crude downside and upside risks for petchems
11/11/2018

By John Richardson ONE of the biggest risks for petrochemicals producers has once again become oil p...

Read
Negative Asian polyolefins margins show need for recession planning
05/11/2018

ASIAN PE and PP spreads turned negative in October this year for the first time since the same month...

Read
President Trump’s “very good” call with President Xi: Nothing changes
02/11/2018

PRESIDENT TRUMP said yesterday that his discussions with President Xi Jinping were “moving along n...

Read
Polymers industry risks sleepwalking into sustainability crisis
31/10/2018

GLOBALLY some 75% of aluminium is recycled, 86% of steel and 40% of glass. Why shouldn’t the same ...

Read
US GDP growth peaks as economic challenges build
29/10/2018

A FULL two percentage points of US third quarter growth of 3.5% was down to stock building. Total US...

Read

Market Intelligence

ICIS provides market intelligence that help businesses in the energy, petrochemical and fertilizer industries.

Learn more

Analytics

Across the globe, ICIS consultants provide detailed analysis and forecasting for the petrochemical, energy and fertilizer markets.

Learn more

Specialist Services

Find out more about how our specialist consulting services, events, conferences and training courses can help your teams.

Learn more

ICIS Insight

From our news service to our thought-leadership content, ICIS experts bring you the latest news and insight, when you need it.

Learn more