|SWhen capacity utilization in major world
regions is analyzed, a far less worrisome picture emerges.
|SRefining capacity utilization in most regional
markets reached a high point in 1998.†
The Asian financial collapse, recession, and capacity expansion
reduced utilizations since then, but utilizations are increasing again.† Utilizations, however, are unlikely to
reach 1998 levels in 2004 in most regions.
|SThe U.S. is currently experiencing high
utilizations during this summerís gasoline season, and Asia is seeing both
high demand growth and capacity utilization.
|SThe Asian demand growth should also result in
increased utilization in the Middle East.
|SIn Europe, neither product demand nor capacity
utilization has shown much change in recent years, as shown in the next