This month, members of Lucite International (LI)’s Commercial Team attended the EPCA Annual Meeting in Berlin, where more than 2,500 delegates came together from all over the globe for the four day event. The team heard from customers and suppliers about the latest picture in the EAME and global methacrylates market on how the plastics and coatings sectors are faring.

The demand outlook for Q4 looks to be typically seasonal after a strong summer. The view for 2014 from customers seems to be one of confidence in a small degree of growth in the construction and automotive industry.

Malcolm Kidd, Business Director for EAME Methacrylate Monomers recently shared his thoughts on the latest picture in the EAME region in his regular market review feature published both online and in the industry focused FreeFlow magazine. He said:

“While the statistics suggest that we have not yet recovered to pre-recession demand levels in many chemicals sectors, including MMA, there is a positive momentum emerging, which is bringing a more encouraging outlook. I think we should be thankful for the regular stream of good news stories and real signs of improvement that are giving us grounds for some optimism here in EAME.

“The Eurozone is emerging from recession and grew by 0.3% in the second quarter of 2013, slightly ahead of forecast. Construction activity increased by 1%, the fastest rate in over two years, with Germany leading the way with 3.9%. Even Europe’s carmakers are reporting some green shoots of recovery.

“Market demand has exceeded forecasts and is maintaining an upward trend; and the bottom line is that it is not only due to the magnificent weather we’ve had across most of Europe this summer. After a slow start, the coatings season has progressed from strength to strength and is enjoying a prolonged period of good demand. The pMMA and cast sheet segments have also shown signs of a pickup in activity since the beginning of the year. Margins continue to be a challenge for all of us, but it is encouraging to see that volumes are returning to a healthier position.”

Malcolm Kidd added, “The team is passionate about delivering added value to our customers and industry partners in the merchant market. We were delighted to hear from our customers at EPCA that they are pleased with our product quality, service level and the overall LI ‘experience’”.

The FreeFlow publication shares information and market intelligence with customers and partners involved with methacrylate monomers in order to help them grow and prosper. You can read the latest issue of FreeFlow here and access previous market reviews here.