Over the last decade, the global chemical industry has experienced one of its worst economic storms in recent history. In their bids to get through the unprecedented long economic downturn and to survive in the new economic era, many chemical companies have turned to reconfiguring their supply chains and revamping their operations. Inevitably, these structural and operational transformations and recent developments in the sociopolitical environment have brought several supply chain operational issues to the fore. This paper focuses on three primary issues. First, it identifies the key characteristics of supply chains in the chemical industry, which warrant management approaches that differ from those of other industries. Second, it discusses extensively the latest trends in chemical supply chains and the key supply chain operational issues that have unfolded over recent years in the chemical industry. The highlights of latest supply chain trends and issues enable readers to gain a good insight of current status as well as short term future of chemical supply chains. Third, this paper gives a brief overview of research work that has been done to address supply chain operation problems. Besides identifying gaps in the field of supply chain operation research, industrially relevant research opportunities that are gaining researchers' interests are also distinguished in this work.