Europe Market Analysis – With Kim Hanique – Regional Director Europe – Suttons International

This month we speak to Kim Hanique, Regional Director Europe, to hear her perspective on the state of the European market, future outlook, and the ongoing issues caused by the war in Ukraine.

Can you tell us about your background in the chemical industry and logistics?

I started in logistics after graduating from university in Antwerp, where I studied applied economics. I joined Suttons 6 years ago after some years at Maersk Line, where I learned a lot about the shipping industry and also about managing a team. The chemical industry was hence not completely new, but ISO tanks certainly were. In the past years we have seen quite some evolutions in the market due to external factors such as Covid, the Ukrainian war and the economic crisis in Europe. Interesting but challenging times to say the least.



What current factors are impacting the chemical logistics market in Europe?

While the last years have been challenging for the global (chemical) logistics market, it has indeed had a large impact on Europe.


Covid changed the world forever in the way how we do business with the move to remote and hybrid working. The logistics industry has been impacted by Covid, and Brexit shortly after, both hit the European region harder than others thanks to lockdown measures, customs requirements changing and other measures. When we finally thought we were heading for recovery, the war in Ukraine began and posed a whole new set of challenges.


A lot of our customers are seeing production costs increase significantly and have shortage of raw materials due to the factors mentioned above. This effect is much greater in Europe than in the other regions and so competitiveness is under pressure.


How do you foresee these factors impacting the Europe market throughout the next year and beyond?

It is difficult to predict what will happen, however we do not expect a steep increase in volumes in the near future. The economic situation hasn’t stabilized yet, and impact continues to be unclear.


We are committed to easing the pain of the situation for our customers. We stay in close contact with all our customers to understand the market changes and to be able to react in a fast and timely manner to help where we can.


Our team in Europe (with 3 offices: Antwerp, Rotterdam and Hamburg) is motivated to provide excellent service and value in these difficult times and I’m proud to be a part of this great family business.

How are Suttons reacting to these impacts?

At Suttons we keep a close eye on the changes to the market to and adjust accordingly. We aim to help our customers through these times by focusing on high service levels in a cost-effective way leading to the lowest cost of ownership.


As a global company, we have the resource to shift the balance in our internal network to reduce and minimise the impact on our organisation while continuing to offer our customers with the highest levels of value and service without compromising any safety in our fleet.



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