Three actions that can be taken to rebuild the chemical industry

The chemical industry has a key role to play in making the world “better” after the pandemic. This is the conclusion of the world economic forum Action Group on chemistry and advanced materials industry, which I have the honor to serve as an expert consultant.

The conclusions are as follows

“Where’s the next one?

Strengthening economic recovery through stimulus measures depends on the way and speed of resource allocation. Here are three actions that chemical industry leaders can take:

“1。 Build infrastructure to support a more resilient and sustainable socio-economic system. 83% of consumers said that it is very important for enterprises to design reusable, recyclable products that will never enter the landfill. The chemical industry needs to solve the problem of huge infrastructure investment, which is the basis of its transition to more sustainable development. For example, the transition to a circular economy requires investment to encourage greater transparency of waste flows (cycle tracking and tracking), establish end-of-life collection systems for further material categories, develop chemical cycle processes, and establish the necessary physical assets. This can only be achieved through the cooperation of regional clusters, which represent an ideal opportunity to stimulate support.

“2。 Use stimulus programs to innovate and support broader sustainable development goals. The chemical industry has the opportunity to engage with policy makers to demonstrate their important contribution to achieving ambitious policy objectives. For example, industry innovators may further support the transition to clean mobile. The industry has offered a range of solutions to make transportation more energy efficient. With the advent of autonomous and / or electric vehicles, future transportation may require a range of new materials and chemicals to make everything from batteries to simplified power systems and customizable interiors. The industry’s contribution to the development of advanced biofuels, green hydrogen, sustainable battery materials or recycling technologies will be the key to this transformation.

“3。 Stimulate a new wave of innovation through a collaborative ecosystem. By working with value chain partners, governments and start-ups, the chemical industry can build an ecosystem that drives the next wave of innovation. To achieve this, chemical industry leaders can work with start-ups to tap new sources of (digital) innovation. In recycling alone, for example, hundreds of related start-ups around the world are using new technologies – but they cannot scale up without additional funding. Now that the time is ripe, enterprises and public enterprises will speed up the process of bringing these technologies to the market.

“Building a better future

The chemical industry has gone through the crisis through serious fixed cost restructuring, calm portfolio management and the application of “lean perspective” to its process. Now there’s an opportunity to show that humans and the planet are the real drivers of business. Through cross sectoral innovation and collaboration, the chemical industry can not only better rebuild, but also ensure its role in the next generation by improving products, services and technologies. “