Solid Q1 for BASF but market outlook uncertain

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BASF had a solid start to 2012, according to the company. Q1 sales rose 6% to €20.6bn but income before special items decreased to €2.5bn, down 7% on the same period in 2011.

“Increased raw material costs could not be fully passed on in all business areas, which put pressure on our margins,” said Dr Kurt Bock, chairman and CEO of BASF.

The company expects global economic growth to continue over the course of 2012, he added, although ongoing uncertainty on the financial markets could dampen growth prospects. Positive stimulus for the chemical industry will mainly come from the emerging markets, Brock explained.