BARCELONA (ICIS)--The coronavirus pandemic impact may accelerate China’s self-sufficiency in chemicals, leaving the global industry struggling with overcapacity as that huge export market closes.
- Industry pulling out of depths of downturn
- But risk of second wave is high, infection rates rising globally
- China paraxylene (PX) imports could fall from 16m tonnes to 9m tonnes in 2020
- China refineries likely to run hard, flooding markets with gasoline and other products
- Refinery/petrochemical interface under pressure
- Global economy was in trouble before pandemic
- Paradigm shifts accelerating – shift from fossil fuels, regional value chains, service-driven business models
- Europe isocyanate markets gradually improving from very low levels
- Demand from automotive still poor
- Chemicals face changing auto market on switch to electric, autonomous
Listen to this podcast interview with Paul Hodges, chairman at consultancy International eChem; John Richardson, ICIS senior consultant, Asia; ICIS Insight Editor Nigel Davis; and Fergus Jensen, Europe Editor covering isocyanates and phenol/acetone.
Interview by Will Beacham
Read more analysis of chemical market trends in this week's ICIS Chemical Business.
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Read Paul Hodges ICIS Chemicals and the Economy blog
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