PODCAST: US Gulf Coast storm outages risk global chemical supply crunch

Author: Will Beacham


BARCELONA (ICIS)—The US Gulf Coast storm impact could be worse than Hurricane Harvey, and cause a global supply crunch for major product groups.

  • Polar storm impact could be worse than Hurricane Harvey
  • 100% of US capacity knocked out for major commodities
  • Polar storm on top of shipping container, semi-conductor disruption
  • Supply was already tight in some value chains
  • Middle East and South Korea may replace lost US supplies
  • Big question over real demand in China
  • Globally, pandemic-related stockpiling may mask underlying poor demand
  • Global supply chains not fit for purpose
  • Brexit disruption will get worse when UK starts to enforce border controls
  • Expect big drop in China 2021 net imports of polypropylene (PP), ethylene glycols (EG), paraxylene (PX), styrene
  • China self-sufficiency means producers elsewhere may have to close capacity

Click here to listen to the podcast

With  John Richardson, ICIS senior consultant for Asia, Paul Hodges, chairman of New Normal Consulting and Nigel Davis, ICIS Insight Editor.

Editor’s note: This podcast is an opinion piece. The views expressed are those of the presenter and interviewees, and do not necessarily represent those of ICIS.

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Read the latest issue of ICIS Chemical Business.

Read Paul Hodges ICIS Chemicals and the Economy blog.

Read John Richardson's Asia Chemical Connections blog.

Interview by Will Beacham