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Why Europe's Chemical Industry Needs new Technologies

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Is Europe Threatened with an Ethylene Crisis?

If cheap ethylene floods the market, what effect will that have on the worldwide chemical industry? If the crackers produce a different product mix, what impact will that have on the value chains? What technologies will be needed?

The prerogative for issuing interpretations on these issues is hotly contested at the moment. Shale gas studies and recommendations on the right course of action are published more or less on a weekly basis by the likes of Ceresana, Stratley, Allan Booz, Mc Kinsey, AT Kearney, Frost & Sullivan and Deloitte. There is a consensus among analysts that the new ethylene plants will put the Europeans in a difficult predicament. “The creation of new capacity in North America, the Middle East and China will lead to overcapacity of six million tonnes by 2017 and force Europe to remove two million tonnes from the market,” claimed Walter Bürger-Kley, Managing Partner at Stratley.

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