Frankfurt/Main (dpa) – The CEO of the Leverkusen-based plastics group Covestro, Markus Steilemann, is now at the head of the Association of the Chemical Industry (VCI). He was elected on Thursday at a general meeting of the VCI in Berlin, as the association announced in Frankfurt. The manager replaces Christian Kullmann, who is head of the specialty chemicals group Evonik based in Essen and a member of the VCI executive committee. According to the statutes, the presidency of the association lasts two years.
Steilemann (52), who has a doctorate in chemistry and business administration, is taking over the presidency of the VCI in difficult times: the energy-intensive chemical and pharmaceutical industry is under pressure from high costs, particularly because of the rapid rise in gas prices, which it can only pass on to customers to a limited extent. The times for the German chemical industry have “never been as serious and challenging” as they are now, said Steilemann. No one should close their eyes to the fact that even solidly managed companies are standing with their backs to the wall because of energy prices, curbing their production or even stopping it.
The VCI represents the interests of the chemical and pharmaceutical industry with a good 530,000 in Germany. Last year, Germany’s third-largest industrial sector after automotive and mechanical engineering achieved record sales of around 220 billion euros.
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