Germany: Outlook for Chemicals International Market Risks Unsettle the Chemicals Industry

Editor: Dominik Stephan

For the European chemicals industry, insufficient data security, geopolitical crises and a lack of information about market changes represent the largest potential risk. At the same time, site conditions, especially in Germany, are rated more positively than ever. The site factor of digitalization only performs moderately well, however, a recent survey shows.

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Number of enterprises in the manufacture of chemicals and chemical products industry in Germany from 2008 to 2014 (DATA: Eurostat)
Number of enterprises in the manufacture of chemicals and chemical products industry in Germany from 2008 to 2014 (DATA: Eurostat)
(Source: Statista)

In the current poll of Camelot Management Consultants Chemonitor, 90% of chemical managers rate Germany “good” or “very good” as a site, 10% more than in January of this year (more than 200 top decision makers were consulted for the report).

“Satisfaction with site conditions has reached a new all-time high. After more cautious predictions at the beginning of the year, expectations for profit and sales development stabilized. In parallel to this, large companies in particular are focusing more heavily on cost minimization programs,” Dr. Josef Packowski, Managing Partner at CAMELOT, says, summarizing the results of the Chemonitor survey on economic development in the chemicals industry.

Moderate Satisfaction with the Site Factor of Digitalization

In the current survey, the Chemonitor panel was for the first time asked about its estimation of digitalization as a site factor for the chemicals industry. Of those questioned, 58% rated digitalization in Germany as “good” or “very good”. With this, digitalization is ranked on the lower side of average, ahead of working costs (25%), company taxation (18%) and energy costs (11%). Quality of research and development stayed in first place of all the site factors, being valued positively by 93% of those interviewed.

From IT to Strategy: Risks at a glance

The topic of risk management was the focal point of the current Chemonitor survey, which was concluded a week before the accident at BASF on October 17. Asked about risks with a high significance for their own company, about half of the managers pointed towards IT risks (48%), followed by strategical (46%) and operational risks (43%) as well as compliance risks (39%).

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