Action on Commodities and Raw Materials

  • Author: ChemistryViews
  • Published: 08 February 2011
  • Source / Publisher: Cefic
  • Associated Societies: CEFIC (European Chemical Industry Council), Belgium
thumbnail image: Action on Commodities and Raw Materials

Cefic strongly supports the work by the EU Commission to help Europe secure access to raw materials. Fair and secure access to natural resources is a central concern for the European chemical industry.

Countries rich in natural resources increasingly introduce discriminatory practices to limit availability of their raw materials to other markets. The chemical industry in Europe sees these policies as a worrying trend, and the sector cannot accept that countries subsidize their downstream industry by artificially increasing the price on world markets for foreign competitors. These practices include double pricing, export restrictions and export taxes on ethylene feedstock, gas, palm oil or key minerals such as fluorspar, yellow phosphorous and rare earths.

Stronger global governance is needed under the wing of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

Cefic also believes that Europe must catch up, move forward, and thrive in a bio-based economy. They urge the Commission and EU member states to permanently remove self-erected barriers, without jeopardising food security, on bio-ethanol and sugar/carbohydrates which are used as feedstock for the chemicals industry.

Cefic sees substitution with other materials within the same technology or recycling as possible approaches along with harnessing alternative technologies.

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