ICIS Market Expert Blogs

Asian Chemical Connections

John Richardson’s Asian Chemicals Connections looks at Asian and global commodity chemicals and polymer pricing trends, supply and demand, macroeconomics, energy and environmental issues.

China’s PP industry: Short-term tactics and long-term strategy
30th May 2023

An average 2023-2040 PP operating rate of 85% would see net imports at 3m tonnes in 2040 rather than our base case of 7m tonnes; and average operating

China’s PP demand in 2023 heading for a 1% decline on risk of just 2.5% GDP growth
25th May 2023

A FALL IN China's PP imports in April and low operating rates at some China plants suggest 2023 demand growth at minus 1%

The old China and HDPE, the new China and the future of demand
15th May 2023

In my downside scenario for China’s HDPE demand in 2023-2040 is correct, the country’s total consumption during this period would be 134m tonnes l

Competing voices and the chemicals challenge of cutting carbon
11th May 2023

We don’t have much time. We must act quickly to prevent potentially catastrophic social, political and economic damage from climate change.


Chemicals and the Economy

Guest blogger, Paul Hodges looks behind today's headlines and studies key influencers shaping the chemical industry over the next 12-18 months. He takes a closer look at oil prices, economic growth and the environment among other things, along with some light-hearted commentary along the way.

An Asian debt crisis would shake the global economy, now the ‘Presidential Cycle’ effect is over
21st May 2023

The Presidential Cycle is now over. Instead, worries about the recession and the US debt ceiling talks are moving centre-stage. But Asian currency ma

Smartphone sales hit new low as world moves into its first “demand recession”
14th May 2023

Cheap used phones priced at<$200 are now the only growth area in the smartphone market. Companies who just sell hardware are now set to be Losers a

Plastics industry reaches ‘make up your mind time’ on recycling and single-use products
7th May 2023

Doing nothing is no longer an option. The plastics industry has a game-changing opportunity to take a global lead in developing a circular economy. It

Chemical industry results confirm major recession is underway
30th April 2023

Chemicals are telling us that all the world's major economies are in a major downturn. And the downturn is starting to accelerate as companies cut bac


Energy Connections

ICIS energy editors post their expert opinions on the major topics facing participants in the European gas, electricity, LNG and oil markets. This blog will look behind the headlines and critically analyse the impact of market developments on the industry, with some more light-hearted posts thrown in for good humour.

Spot LNG stuck in bullish mood
21st July 2021

Spot LNG prices remain firmly in bullish mood, with little prospect of an immediate easing of tight market conditions. Low storage levels in Europe, g

Spot LNG strong as China equals Japan
18th June 2021

Spot LNG strong as China equals Japan Spot LNG prices remain bullish as China’s demand growth continues and Australia enters a period of heavy maint

Spot LNG bullish on storage, summer peak
21st May 2021

Spot LNG bullish on storage, summer peak Spot LNG prices have broken back into double figures, over $10/MMBtu, as Europe continues to pull in gas to r

Asia, Europe LNG converges as US turns cold
16th February 2021

Spot gas markets in Europe and Asia have re-aligned after splitting apart during last month’s cold weather and price spikes in east Asia. But it may


Chemical Connections

The ICIS Chemical connections blog delves into the chemicals and commodities behind some of the world’s biggest companies. Daniel tracks and provides analysis on 167 companies in the oil and gas, commodities, chemicals, speciality chemicals, plastics, packaging and fertilizers markets and Jeremy analyses macro and micro trends affecting the North American chemicals industry, from olefins, aromatics and solvents to general-purpose and engineered plastics.

Ethylene-derivative opportunities take centre stage at IPC
28th March 2022

Huge opportunities are at hand for US producers of ethylene and its derivatives, especially in a world where security of supply remains tenuous in man

Crude oil’s meteoric rise to ripple through supply chains
3rd March 2022

Crude oil prices are rising at a rate at which passing on the increases downstream is proving untenable in some markets. Its volatility will spur furt

Sustainability challenges posed by recycled plastic inflation’s long game
23rd February 2022

The packaging supply chain needs to come to grips with inflation, but in a context few are considering at the moment – the sustainability movement.

Logistics will signal pathway to market normalisation
12th January 2022

Prices precipitously falling from their highs after months of feverous run-up is typical commodity market behaviour, but the conditions in which the c


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