Production of Industrial Chemicals in the EU Increased in 2018

Production of industrial chemicals in the European Union (EU) increased in 2018 compared with the previous 3 years, but it is still at lower levels than in 2004, Eurostat data showed.

The total production of industrial chemicals peaked at 330 million tonnes in 2007 (a 6.1 % increase since 2004), prior to the financial and economic crisis. Production then fell sharply between 2007 and 2009, reaching a low of 270 million tonnes (a total decline of about 18 %), before rebounding to 300 million tonnes in 2010. Between 2010 and 2015, total production of chemicals followed a downwards trend before increasing again in recent years. In 2018, total production stood at 301 million tonnes, 3.1% lower than in 2004.

The production of chemicals hazardous to the environment and chemicals hazardous to health followed a similar trend. However, the upturn in the production of chemicals hazardous to the environment was somewhat greater (at 11.0%) between 2015 and 2017, compared with the increase (6.0%) in production of chemicals hazardous to health and the increase (6.1%) in production of total hazardous and non-hazardous chemicals over the same period.

Overall, the total production of industrial chemicals in the EU—including chemicals that are hazardous to the environment and those that are hazardous to health— is at lower levels in 2018 than in 2004.

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