New Normal logo.pngThe blog has an incredibly loyal following around the world. 24% of its readers visit twice a week, or more. They also recommend it to colleagues. Visitor numbers jumped 50% last month.The issue is the rising uncertainty over the outlook for the world economy. This has clear potential to cause problems for the chemical industry.The White Paper, Budgeting for Uncertainty, discusses this in more detail. Now the blog is delighted to announce two major new developments. Both are with ICIS Asia director, John Richardson, co-author of the Asian Chemicals Connections blog:•June 16-17 will see the 2nd New Normal seminar, in Frankfurt, Germany. This follows February’s very successful Singapore launch. It will cover the major changes taking place in chemical demand patterns around the world. The focus will be on:

oLikely developments over the next 12 – 18 months, and oPotential challenges and opportunities over the longer-term

•Next month will also see the launch of an e-book, covering all these issues on a more detailed basis. It will be published by ICIS, one chapter per month. It will take the same format as the very successful White Papers. More details will be available soon.The Value Proposition for both initiatives is very clear. The past 20 years have seen managers able to focus on developments down their vertical silo. Demand growth has been very stable, as the vast Western BabyBoom generation moved into the 25 – 54 age group, when consumption peaks as people marry, settle down and have children.This generation, born between 1946-70, is now entering the 55+ age group. The oldest are 65, and the median are 53 years old. 55+ is the age when people typically save more, and spend less. And this generation will need to save more, as its life expectancy has increased by 10 years versus the 1921-45 generation.This means that we cannot rely on consumption growth, in the developed and emerging economies, to continue in a straight line. Managers instead need to refocus on understanding developments up and down the chemicals Value Chain. This will enable them to identify the challenges ahead for their businesses, and exploit the opportunities that will arise.Further details of the e-book will be available soon. Please click here for more details of the Frankfurt New Normal seminar in June.

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