France Petrochemicals Report Q4 2017
Manufacturing export growth is stimulating the French petrochemicals industry with indicators pointing to strengthening growth in polymer and chemicals consumption. French car manufacturers, which are a major consumer of petrochemicals including high value added products, are well-placed to perform well with surging vehicle exports to Southern Europe. The victory of Emmanuel Macron in both presidential and legislative elections paves the way for free market reforms, aimed at boosting corporate profitability and flexibility, which should help address France's ailing competitiveness that had held back the performance of the refining and petrochemicals sector.
In H117, production indices showed that rubber output declined 3.0% y-o-y while plastic continued its strong growth trajectory with output up 3.0% y-o-y. The trend followed that seen in 2016 when rubber fell 0.6% and plastic grew 4.7%.
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