Global Chemicals Production Falls

Decline Slowed in October, ACC Says

Global chemicals production fell slightly in October, as the rate of decline slowed, according to data from the American Chemistry Council.
Production fell 0.2 percent in October, compared with a 0.5 percent drop in September, with declines in Europe and Asia-Pacific balanced by increases in North America, Latin America, the former Soviet Union and Africa and the Middle East.

“Synthetic rubber, manufactured fibers, and coatings showing gains. Production was soft in other segments. Considering year-earlier comparisons, growth was strongest in synthetic rubber, followed by manufactured fibers, plastic resins, other specialties, and coatings,” the ACC said in a statement.

U.S. Resin Production Rises

Production of chemical resins in the U.S. rose in October, driving demand for ancillary breakbulk services in the country.

Figures from the ACC show that production of major plastic resins totalled 3.3 billion tonnes for October, a rise of 1.1 percent compared to the same month last year.

“Sales and captive (internal) use of major plastic resins totalled 7.7 billion pounds (3.5 million tonnes) during October 2019, an increase of 5.5 percent from the same month one year earlier. Year-to-date sales and captive use was 74.0 billion pounds (34 million tonnes), a 4.0 percent increase as compared to the same period in 2018,” the ACC said in a statement.
The petrochemical industry was positive on new capacity for the chemicals sector with CEOs optimistic about forecasts for long-term demand in popular resins such as polyethylene and polypropylene.

Russell Retires from Plastics Division

This month the ACC also announced that Steve Russell, long-time vice president of its Plastics Division, would retire in early February.

Russell led the Plastics Division for more than a decade and played “a crucial role in helping to conceive and operationalize” the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, the leading industry body for advancing plastic sustainability and solutions to plastic waste.

Headquartered in Washington D.C., the ACC is an independent industry association represents a diverse set of companies engaged in the business of chemistry using best-in-class member engagement, political advocacy, communications and scientific research.