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GCC petrochemicals producers face a challenge both from the North American shale boom and tight availability of gas feedstock within the region. They will have to broaden both their product range and their feedstock options.
Abundant cheap feedstock remains a “competitive advantage” for GCC petrochemicals firms, Muhammad al-Mady, CEO of Saudi state-owned petchems giant SABIC, says. But he warns that “we cannot rely solely on natural resources for our future growth… Transforming natural resources into solutions for our customers is, and will always be, the core capability.”
Saudi Aramco’s CEO Khalid al-Falih sees relatively cheap US and Canadian unconventional oil and gas leading to a doubling of North American plastics and chemicals production over the next decade, while supplies of gas-based feedstocks within the GCC are increasingly constrained.
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