What are the two most important factors affecting the future of China's chemical industry?

What are the two most important factors affecting the future of China's chemical industry?

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Editor's Note: On September 13, at the China International Petroleum and Chemical Industry Conference in 2018, Li Shousheng, president of the China Petroleum and Chemical Industry Federation, published "Towards the Next Future of the Petrochemical Industry with Consumption Upgrade and Supply-side Structural Reform" Keynote speech. With his own consent, the interface news extracts some of the content for industry discussion.
Author: China Petroleum and Chemical Industry Federation of Li Shousheng
After 40 years of rapid development in reform and opening up, China's productive forces have been greatly liberated and continuously improved. The contradiction between supply and demand in the market has shifted from insufficient supply to oversupply. People are pursuing consumption and shifting to the pursuit of consumer quality, grade and brand. The tide of consumption upgrading is booming. Come.
China's petroleum and chemical industry products have not fully met the needs of people's consumption upgrades. The industry supply structure needs to be accelerated and upgraded to adapt to the fundamental changes in the contradiction between supply and demand, greatly improve the supply capacity and supply quality of the industry, and create a higher-level, higher-quality material foundation for people to enjoy a better life.
Supply-side structural reforms in the petroleum and chemical industries are accelerating. Consumption upgrades and supply-side structural reforms are becoming the most important factors affecting the future of China's chemical industry. They promote each other and promote each other, and are creating deep changes in the way the industry develops.
Impact of consumption upgrades
Consumption plays an important and fundamental role in economic growth. China is one of the largest consumer markets in the world. In the first half of this year, the total retail sales of consumer goods in China reached 18 trillion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 9.4%. The contribution rate of final consumption to economic growth reached 78.5%, an increase of 14.2 percentage points over the same period of the previous year. It has become the main driving force for economic growth, especially the consumption upgrade has become the main force leading and supporting consumption growth.
Petrochemical products are basic products, which are raw materials or supporting products that are compatible with industries such as electronics, textiles, light industry, agriculture, equipment, building materials, aerospace and other industries. People's consumption upgrades have created a larger and higher level demand for petrochemical products. , providing new impetus for the high quality development of the industry.
First, the 5G era is leading the new upsurge in petrochemical consumption.
With the rapid development of information technology, the iteration of communication technology is accelerating, and people's lives are increasingly inseparable from big data and Internet services. At present, the society is making great strides toward the 5G era, and the commercial application of the 5G communication standard is ready to go.
In the fields of energy saving and environmental protection, smart grid, navigation communication, intelligent agriculture, intelligent manufacturing, smart city, etc., 5G has a wide range of practical applications, and people have great potential for 5G consumption.
According to reports from relevant multinational research institutions, the overall market investment of China's 5G industry will exceed US$1 trillion in the next five years.
The arrival of the 5G era will greatly increase the speed and quality of industrial IoT construction, and will also accelerate the pace of upgrading personal mobile terminal equipment, which will bring a new round of development opportunities for the petroleum and chemical industries, greatly promoting electronic chemistry. The market consumption of products, high-end film materials, high-end resins and other related products has grown rapidly.
Second, high-end manufacturing has created new demand for petrochemical consumption.
High-end manufacturing is a strategic emerging industry. At present, China's high-end manufacturing industry has made great progress, and breakthroughs have been made in a number of high-end equipment such as new energy, aerospace, rail transit, marine engineering, engineering machinery and CNC machine tools.
The rapid development of high-end manufacturing industry not only puts urgent new demands on high-end chemical products such as new chemical materials and special chemicals, but also puts forward new requirements for the upgrading of traditional chemical products such as paints and rubber.
In particular, foreign-funded enterprises are also optimistic about the supporting capacity brought about by the upgrading of China's manufacturing industry and the huge potential of the consumer market. Multinational giants such as BMW, Intel, Boeing, Tesla, Siemens and General Electric have increased their investment in China. The manufacturing industry has further increased the market demand for petrochemical products and has shaken the huge potential of petrochemical consumption.
Third, ecological environmental protection has given new mission to the green consumption of petrochemical products.
Green sustainable development has always been the goal pursued by the petroleum and chemical industries. In recent years, with the continuous improvement of people's demand for beautiful living environment, higher requirements have been put forward for the green development of the petrochemical industry. Not only the production process needs to achieve green pollution, but also the green life and pollution of the product life cycle.
For example, in the past, the quality of plastic bags and fast food boxes used in our lives was not high. Whether it was production or consumption, it had a great impact on the environment. With the progress of society, people have higher quality requirements for plastic bags, fast food boxes and other products. In the past, there has been a substantial increase, not only for vegetables, fruits, meat, eggs and other foods that are green and organic, but also for the food packaging materials, new requirements for green pollution.
The petroleum and chemical industries have the ability to change the nature of matter from the molecular structure, with innate technological advantages and governance capabilities. Many products, technologies and equipment in the petrochemical industry are closely related to the development of the environmental protection industry. They are the main contributors to the environmental pollution control programs such as wastewater treatment, waste gas treatment, solid waste treatment and soil remediation.
In the period of economic and social transformation, green development has spawned a huge demand for the environmental protection market. The petroleum and chemical industry is facing a rare opportunity with great development potential, which can form many new consumption hotspots and new economic growth points.
Pursuing a comfortable life is also fostering new impetus for petrochemical consumption.
China has entered a stage of high-quality development, and people's pursuit of a comfortable life and yearning are more urgent than ever. The most obvious upgrade of comfortable life is consumption upgrade, tourism consumption, health consumption, information consumption, old-age consumption, brand consumption, service consumption and other emerging consumer concepts and consumption patterns are rapidly established, and people's quality of life has upgraded to open up new consumption space. .
Providing comfortable, safe and green products for the whole society is an important direction and inevitable choice for the petroleum and chemical industry to achieve high quality development in the future. At the same time, it is necessary to provide suitable raw materials for the downstream industry.
From neonatal care products to convenient and easy-to-use daily necessities, from new energy-developing products and technologies to new demands for traditional industrial transformation and upgrading, the petroleum and chemical industries will provide a steady stream of future living environments. Material security and foundation.
In addition, the “Belt and Road” has opened up a new space for petrochemical consumption.
The countries along the “Belt and Road” have a large population, a wide geographical area and abundant resources. They have comprehensive comparative advantages such as resource advantages, cost advantages and market advantages in the global petrochemical industry, and are an important growth pole for the global petrochemical industry in the future. At the same time, it is also an important source of resources for raw materials such as oil and gas, natural rubber and potash, and plays an important role in trade between the two sides.
The “Belt and Road Initiative” has opened up a greater space for cooperation in the development of the global petroleum and chemical industry, promoting Chinese petrochemical enterprises to actively go abroad, improve their management and competitiveness on the world stage, and seek for foreign companies and Chinese companies. Cooperation creates a win-win opportunity and an important platform.
Promotion of supply side reform
With the upgrading of consumption and social development, the low-end products market with low grade, high cost and poor efficiency in the petrochemical industry is shrinking. Products and services with high energy consumption, high emissions and low quality have been eliminated, and high-end products, differentiated products and green products are increasingly favored by consumers.
Accelerating structural reforms on the supply side, increasing effective supply, and replacing and eliminating low-end and inefficient supply have become the main lines of structural adjustment and upgrading of China's petroleum and chemical industries.
At present, China's new chemical materials are breaking through in the direction of high-end and differentiation.
The chemical new materials industry is a strategic emerging industry. It is also an important industry supporting high-end industries such as new energy, electronic information, aerospace, rail transit, and high-end equipment manufacturing. It represents a country's industrialization level and technological innovation capability.
Through the efforts of the vast number of enterprises, China's chemical new materials industry has made breakthroughs in a series of important fields such as advanced polymer materials, high-performance resins, special synthetic rubber, high-performance fibers, functional membrane materials, and electronic chemicals. High-end materials such as carbon fiber, polycarbonate, engineering plastics, isoprene rubber, aramid and other materials above T800 grade, the domestic supply capacity is constantly improving.
A few products such as MDI have also reached the international advanced level. Technological innovations in the frontier areas such as graphene, nanomaterials, 3D printing materials and advanced film materials are on the rise, and a number of innovative chemical new materials companies and scientific research institutions have emerged.
At the same time, petrochemical enterprises pay more attention to the development of differentiation. Many brands of new chemical materials have been serialized and stabilized. Food-grade, pharmaceutical-grade and cosmetic-grade products have increased, and their competitiveness and sustainable development capabilities have been significantly enhanced.
For modern coal chemical industry, it is innovating towards both ends and greening.
In the process of diversification of global raw materials, China's modern coal chemical industry has accelerated, and has overcome a large number of cores such as large-scale advanced coal gasification, syngas conversion, large-scale coal-to-methanol, coal-to-liquid (direct and indirect methods), and coal-to-olefins. The key technical problems, through the smooth implementation of the demonstration project, have realized the industrialization of key technical equipment.
On the basis of engineering demonstration, China's modern coal chemical technology innovation has been further deepened. Among them, a number of revolutionary technologies such as direct olefin production from coal, aromatics from coal, and kerosene blending technology are in the process of breaking through. During the promotion phase, the industrialization process is accelerating.
On the other hand, the development trend of high-end modern coal chemical industry is obvious, and the products are continuously extended to the downstream of the industrial chain to produce high value-added fine chemical products and special chemicals such as poly-α-olefins and lubricating base oils.
In addition, the traditional chemical industry is creating a new path of unconventional development.
The traditional chemical industry is the backbone of the Chinese petrochemical industry. Traditional industries such as refining, nitrogen fertilizer, phosphate fertilizer, calcium carbide, chlor-alkali, soda ash, and pesticides occupy a large proportion in the whole industry and are of great significance to meet the needs of the national economy.
The traditional development model of high input, high consumption, high emission and low efficiency that traditional industries have relied for for a long time has been unsustainable, and the supply-side structural reform has been promoted. It is important to realize the transformation of old and new kinetic energy and high-quality development of traditional industries.
After adjustments in recent years, especially after the State Council promulgated the "Guiding Opinions on the Structure Adjustment of Petrochemical Industry to Promote Transformation and Increase Benefits", chemical companies actively promoted supply-side structural reforms, and the industrial chain continued to extend to the high-end, and the overcapacity contradictions were significantly alleviated. The development trend of high-end, differentiated and green development has been continuously improved and consolidated.