The chemicals sector comprises a wide range of organisations, from high volume bulk chemical companies to small scale, speciality businesses. The market dynamics facing these businesses can and do have a significant impact on the margins they can earn. The end markets into which chemical companies supply are experiencing mixed fortunes which is adding to current market fluctuations. Add to this foreign exchange instability and the impact of an unstable oil price and we can see the challenges facing management at the present time.
The increase in demand for raw materials globally has now focussed the attention of the sector on sustainability, not least because of potential shortages going forward and the need to develop alternative methods of production. Likewise, difficulty in attracting young talent to the sector is moving up the agenda.
All of these challenges are combining to make this a critical time for this sector, the health and well being of which is key to the fortunes of the domestic and global economies
Key issues facing the Chemicals sector include: