APLA '17: Demand recovery will determine pace of new chem projects in Brazil

13 November 2017 17:53 Source:ICIS News

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil (ICIS)--Domestic demand in Brazil will need to continue recovering before companies can start considering new projects in the country, the CEO of Braskem said on Monday.

Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com/REX/Shutterstock Local demand is critical for any new Brazilian plants because the country does not enjoy the substantial feedstock advantages of other parts of the world, said Fernando Musa, CEO of the Brazilian polyolefins producer. He made his comment during a presentation at the annual meeting of the Latin American Petrochemical Association (APLA).

Brazilian demand took a big hit during the country's recession, which some say was worse than the Great Depression.

Producers responded to this drop in demand by exporting more material. The recession has since ended, and Brazil's economy has resumed growing.

As domestic demand recovers, domestic producers like Braskem will shift exports back to Brazil.

Musa expects this process to take a couple of years.

In addition to more domestic demand, Braskem will also need feedstock and long-term commitments from suppliers, Musa said.

The APLA annual meeting runs through Tuesday.

Photo credit: Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com/REX/Shutterstock
By Al Greenwood