Germany's chem output up 1.3% in Q3, annual forecast upgraded - VCI

02 November 2017 10:29 Source:ICIS News

LONDON (ICIS)--The German chemical trade group VCI upgraded on Thursday its outlook for the country’s industry in 2017 following a strong third quarter.

After the second-quarter results, VCI expected chemical production to grow by 1.5%. However, it now expects it to grow by 2% year on year.

It also altered its outlook for growth in chemical prices, expecting them to grow by 3% during the year, rather than 3.5% in its previous release, on the back of a fall of 0.7% in the third quarter.

VCI still expects sales in the chemicals industry to grow by 5.0% year on year in 2017 to circa €194bn.

Meanwhile, chemical production in Germany grew by 1.3% quarter on quarter during Q3.

Year on year, chemical production was up 2.9%, while chemical prices were also up by 2.9%.

Capacity utilisation in the third quarter was above-average for the third consecutive time at 85.6%.

Employment remained at a "constant high level", said VCI, with the German chemical industry employing in the third quarter 449,300 people.

Irrespective of the falling prices, the rise in production in the third quarter led to increased sales, which rose 0.4% to €46.5bn when compared to the previous quarter.

Year-on-year sales were up 6.1% with both domestic and foreign business developing positively.

“2017 can become a good year for the chemical industry in Germany,” said VCI's president Kurt Bock, also the CEO of chemical major BASF.

“But this is no guarantee for the time after that. Our companies are expecting the incoming federal government to set a reliable industrial policy course for growth, investment, affordable energy and more support for research and innovation.”

Pictured: Container harbour in Hamburg
Source: Bernd Nasner/Action Press/REX/Shutterstock

By Niall Swan