VCI Chemical Group Sees Chemical Production Rising 1.5% in 2013

Germany’s chemical association VCI, which represents 1,650 chemical companies including BASF SE and Lanxess AG, forecast an increase in chemical and pharmaceutical production of 1.5 percent for next year boosted by demand from emerging markets.

Selling prices will probably gain 0.5 percent and chemical sales will rise 2 percent next year, the Frankfurt-based association said today in a statement. In contrast to this year in which the industry hired 2 percent more workers, 2013 won’t generate any growth in job numbers.

VCI confirmed forecasts for this year for chemical production to decline 3 percent after weakness in the world economy and the recession in southern Europe hurt demand. Germany’s third largest industry has had to “pay tribute to a difficult global environment,” the VCI said in today’s statement.

“2012 was a mixed year for Germany’s chemical industry,” Karl-Ludwig Kley, president of the VCI, said in the statement. “Declining demand from Europe contrasted with a strong dynamic in emerging markets. The government must now create the conditions for German chemical companies to improve their global competitiveness in the coming year.”

In 2012, selling prices probably rose 2.5 percent with sales stagnating at about 184.2 billion euros ($239.8 billion), the VCI reiterated. Revenue from abroad increased 2 percent, while domestic sales dropped 2.5 percent. The number of people employed rose to 437,000.

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