Brussels – European chemicals production is expected to remain flat in 2020 after a 1% year-on-year decline in 2019, according to industry group Cefic.
The trend, it said, reflects a slowing global economy as well as a weak growth in manufacturing industry, the Brussel-based group announced 17 Jan,
In 2019, the business climate was affected by “slower global economic growth, political uncertainty around Brexit and ongoing trade conflicts,” Cefic noted.
This impacted demand by several key markets, including the automotive and electrical appliance segments, which reported Cefic “significantly reduced their output in 2019.”
As René van Sloten, Cefic executive director industrial policy, said: “While rising real incomes should keep demand in manufactured goods stable, the continuous political uncertainty and hostile trade environment are unlikely to promote significant growth.”
One bright spot, though, is the construction industry – a significant buyer of chemicals, which last year posted growth of 2.5%, said Cefic.
This positive trend, it added, is set to continue, as the sector continues to benefit from low interest rates and a strong pipeline of infrastructure investments,