Emerging markets in the Eastern nations are driving a regional demand shift for specialty plastics, said Keith Smith, executive vice president of SABIC Innovative Plastics. The factors behind the shift are "the increased local demand, [and] although the tide has slowed a little bit, there continues to be a growth of manufacturing in the East to supply the West," Smith said. "We've seen moderate growth in 2013, but less than what we'd hoped for overall. I think that's what the industry has seen in general. ... Even the U.S. building and construction sector is starting to see some recovery, which has been a real weak point," he added.