The nature of the European chemical industry permits us to manage the molecules at all levels of the value chain”
Sharing a glimpse of the future for the chemical industry in 2050, Cefic Director General Marco Mensink spoke at the annual Chemical Watch Global Business Summit in Brussels.
The blueprint he presented is based on an in-depth, year-long analysis of trends and megatrends, an extrapolation of data, existing reports, along with the most comprehensive stakeholder consultation that Cefic has ever undertaken.
All these activities highlight a variety of assumptions about the chemical industry in European society in the next few decades, explained Marco Mensink. For example, the transition to a low-carbon and circular economy will create new business opportunities for chemical companies who will increasingly specialise in providing sustainable solutions.
Circular economy and the constant drive towards resource efficiency will be powered by the chemical industry. Thanks to technologies developed by the industry such as chemical recycling, waste will become a valuable resource. The transition towards a circular economy will lead to a closer collaboration between the chemical industry, other manufacturing industries and recycling sectors so that recycled materials will immediately be sent back to production.
Other transformational technologies such as blockchain and artificial intelligence will also change the chemical industry by fostering more integrated value chains and helping the industry become more transparent vis-à-vis consumers and authorities. The nature of the European chemical industry permits us to manage the molecules at all levels of the value chain and to keep turning them around in close cooperation with all necessary partners, concluded Marco Mensink.
Cefic will publish its sketch of the future European chemical industry in its Mid-Century strategy report in June 2019.