April 10, 2003
News Release 03-040


The organic commodity chemical industry underwent significant consolidation during 1997-2001, paralleling the trend of the overall chemical industry, reports the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) in its publication Industry and Trade Summary: Organic Commodity Chemicals.

Organic commodity chemicals, also known as petrochemicals, are used primarily as intermediates in the production of a wide variety of downstream goods, including plastics and apparel. Notable consolidations in the years covered in the summary included Dow's purchase of Union Carbide; the creation of ExxonMobil Chemical; and Lyondell Chemical's acquisition of Arco Chemical.

The ITC, an independent, nonpartisan, factfinding agency, recently released the report as part of an ongoing series of reports on thousands of products imported into and exported from the United States. The report addresses the market, industry, and trade conditions for organic commodity chemicals from 1997 through 2001. Following are highlights of the report:

Industry and Trade Summary: Organic Commodity Chemicals (USITC Publication 3590, March 2003) will be available in the Publications section of the ITC Internet web site at www.usitc.gov. A printed copy may be ordered by calling 202-205-1809, or by writing the Office of the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20436. Requests may be faxed to 202-205-2104.

ITC Industry and Trade Summary reports include information on product uses, U.S. and foreign producers, and customs treatment of the products being studied; they analyze the basic factors affecting trends in consumption, production, and trade of the commodities, as well as the factors bearing on the competitiveness of the U.S. industry in domestic and foreign markets.

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