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Friday, 20 September 2019

Back to the future

Friday, 2 September 2016 | Posted by: Vanessa Bauersachs, European Coatings Journal

How will the chemical industry look like in 2030? The German chemical industry association (VCI) has recently updated their study on the German chemical industry in 2030. Many of the prognoses are also valid for the European paints and coatings industry.

Raw materials and R&D

In 2030, fossil raw materials remain most important in the global chemical industry but their share drops slightly, with the use of raw material increasing from 13,8 to around 18 percent, projects VCI. Not an ideal but rather probable prognosis – not for the chemical industry as a whole but for the coatings industry as well. The association underlines that for raw materials to gain further standing, R&D efforts are necessary as well as collaborations with other industries along the value chain. 

But not only in the field of sustainability VCI states that R&D efforts will increase globally along with a rising pressure for innovation. Another factor to change the chemical industry worldwide is industry 4.0. I am curious to see in what extent and how fast the laboratory 4.0 will become reality. But especially with regard to the paints and coatings industry, I also ask myself how the shortage of skilled labour will develop in the years to come.  

Markets and economy

The association projects a rise for the global economy as well as a sharp decrease of China’s economic growth along with Russia and Brazil presumed to be in a recession – developments that surely will also influence the coatings industry.

These are only a few points of the study by the VCI. More information is available here.  

I would be very interested to hear your opinions. How do you picture the coatings industry in 2030? Where do you see the main chances and challenges?

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Vanessa Bauersachs
European Coatings Journal
Vanessa Bauersachs
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