PODCAST: Chemicals to be squeezed between rising costs, collapsing demand

Author: Will Beacham

2020/05/25

BARCELONA (ICIS)--The global chemical industry will suffer more than other manufacturing sectors, squeezed between rising feedstock costs and collapsed demand as the coronavirus pandemic unfolds.

- Rising oil price heaps pressure on chemicals
- Many chemical prices not rising with oil, squeezing margins
- Consumer sentiment poor, strong rebound as lockdowns ease unlikely
- Demand growth expected very negative, especially for durable goods
- Hertz bankruptcy will flood US market with used vehicles
- China export demand low, slow path out of crisis
- China: could chemicals ramp up be speculative?
- Decade of lost growth for developing countries, millions pushed into poverty
- World moving to a New Normal of persistent low demand growth
- Chemical industry should “wake up” and focus on new reality
- Concerns about social unrest as economic depression develops

Listen to this podcast interview with John Richardson, ICIS Senior Consultant, Asia; Paul Hodges, chairman at consultancy International eChem, and ICIS Insight Editor Nigel Davis.

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Front page picture: Rental cars in a parking lot in Los Angeles, 22 May
Source: Etienne Laurent/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

Podcast interview by Will Beacham

Read more analysis of chemical market trends in this week's free special edition of ICIS Chemical Business.

ICIS is organising regular updates to help bring the industry together in this time of crisis. Register here 

Read John Richardson's Asia Chemical Connections blog

Read Paul Hodges ICIS Chemicals and the Economy blog

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