Commentary: ICIS Top 40 Power Players revealed

16 December 2013 00:00 Source:ICIS Chemical Business

Welcome to the ICIS Top 40 Power Players, sponsored by executive search firm CTPartners. Nominated and voted for by senior members of the ICIS editorial team, the list consists of executives who have had the most impact on the industry during 2013.

This year has been one of contrasting fortunes for players in different regions. Thanks to the shale gas revolution, North American-based producers have benefitted from ethane feedstock prices just a fraction of the cost in Asia and Europe. This year’s winner of the awards for the second year running, Dow Chemical CEO Andrew Liveris, is capitalising on this through an impressive capacity expansion plan.

Europe-based CEOs, however, have spent 2013 feeling more and more squeezed between low-cost producers in the Middle East and the resurgent US. Many have decided to close plants in the region, and some, such as INEOS chairman Jim Ratcliffe, are seeking innovative ways to combat Europe’s feedstock challenges.

Producers in the Middle East and Asia continue with rapid expansion of domestic capacity. This will reduce their reliance on imported material. Global overcapacity may prove to be the next big challenge for many CEOs in 2014.

By Will Beacham