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ChemOrbis 2nd PVC Event: European PVC industry sees renewed hope

by ChemOrbis Editorial Team -
  • 12/02/2015 (13:02)
Sabine Malzkorn, Head of Sales at Vestolit, made a presentation in the first session of the ChemOrbis 2nd Turkey PVC event, giving an overview on the European PVC industry. “PVC demand peaked in 2007 in Europe. However, after the crisis, 2007 levels in EU are not expected before 2020,” she highlighted. Although many industry players had seen little hope for Europe previously, Malzkorn stated that recent investments in European PVC from Westlake and Mexichem indicated renewed interest in Europe due to the region’s strength in specialty products and market know-how.

Malzkorn cited costs, political discussions including energy taxation, shale gas discussion and a planned free trade agreement between the European Union and US among the challenges dampening the outlook for the European PVC industry. “The US PVC industry is powered by substantially lower electricity costs, whereas electricity costs in Europe are two times higher,” Malzkorn noted. On the other hand, increasing PVC recycling was said to be both a challenge and an opportunity as increased recycling activity would help improve the public’s image of the PVC industry.

Despite the prevailing overcapacity issues and margin pressure, Malzkorn stated that the European PVC market is on a slow recovery and added that further industry consolidation is both necessary and expected to help strengthen the region’s PVC industry.
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