The global petrochemicals market size was valued at USD 597.49 billion in 2022. It is projected to reach USD 1,304.53 billion by 2031, growing at a CAGR of 7.28% during the forecast period (2023-2031).
Petrochemicals are chemical products made from petroleum. However, many of the same chemical compounds can also be produced from renewable sources like corn, sugar cane, biomass, and other fossil fuels like coal and natural gas. In order to produce petrochemicals, oil and related petroleum gas must be processed in multiple phases. Products of petroleum oil refining are important raw materials in the petrochemical industry. Products made from petrochemicals include benzene, propylene, and ethylene, as well as source monomers for synthetic rubbers and components for technical carbon. Crude oil is converted into secondary products like petrochemicals and petroleum products after several refinement processes. Crude oil is the fundamental building block for producing all petrochemical and petroleum components after a lengthy refining process in oil refineries.
New materials are frequently the foundation for new product development and technological advancements in the electronics and electrical business. The production of electronics and electrical goods in the current electronics and electrical sector heavily depends on petrochemical products. Due to support from the petrochemical sector, commonplace items like CD players, telephones, radios, computers, and TVs are produced on a big scale. This is so that the electronic sector may develop, which depends on the petrochemical industry's production and provision of specific commodities.
Petrochemical materials used in the electronics industry have advantages over traditional materials in terms of better electrical insulation, safety, data storage, ease of assembly, and a significant capacity for miniaturization. Petrochemicals are used to manufacture microchips, which are an essential part of computers. The electronic industries' buzzword is petro-chemistry. It may be found everywhere, from cables and connectors to printed circuit boards (PCBs) and chips. The need for petrochemical services is expected to increase in the near future due to the predicted growth of the global electronics sector.
Petrochemicals are used to make various goods for various building and construction industry uses. Modern paints and coatings add color and protect buildings from the elements, and insulation technologies with unrivaled performance boost the buildings' energy efficiency. Petrochemicals make polymers, paints and coatings, solvents, adhesives, and sealants. Buildings worldwide are becoming more environmentally friendly thanks to materials made of transparent petrochemicals that are incredibly strong and long-lasting.
Petrochemicals are used in the building and construction industry for various purposes, including insulation, piping, window frames, interior design, paints, and coatings. Polyvinyl chloride (PVC or vinyl), a petrochemical substance, is produced using ethylene (ethene). In the architecture and construction industry, polyvinyl chloride (PVC, or vinyl) is used in various applications, including the creation of wiring and cables, leak-proof PVC pipes, and siding and window frames that are exceptionally durable, inexpensive, and help save energy when heating and cooling homes.
Growing environmental and health concerns about using hazardous materials in daily life could limit industry expansion. The number of environmentally concerned consumers worldwide is rising due to informational accessibility, which will inspire other businesses to offer ecologically friendly consumer goods. The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has discovered that petrochemicals like benzene are harmful to the environment and carcinogenic to humans. Long-term exposure to this feedstock can result in major health issues such as anemia, decreased immunity, and cancer. Short-term exposure to this feedstock can also cause narcosis, eye and skin irritation.
Plastic pollution is currently one of the world's most challenging problems. The oceans have been accumulating alarmingly and are now present almost everywhere. The breakdown of macroplastics results in microplastics forming, which negatively affect the environment. In addition, microplastics pollute the oceans and are consumed by aquatic animals, which causes greater concentrations of these plastic particles to enter our food chain. Governments and international organizations are developing standards and procedures for evaluating these items' environmental effects over their entire life cycles in cooperation with the business sector. This will probably lead to stronger environmental and health restrictions restricting harmful items, restricting the market growth.
The primary companies in the petrochemical industry are concentrating on increasing the production of petrochemicals to improve their position and gain a competitive edge in the global market. For instance, a new petrochemical complex will be built in Ruwais, Abu Dhabi, thanks to an agreement between The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company and Reliance Industries. The integrated facility will produce 360,000 tonnes of PVC, 1.1 million tonnes of ethylene dichloride, and 940,000 tonnes of chlor-alkali annually.
Additionally, the Middle East, United States, and Asia-Pacific regions are investing significantly in supporting petrochemical processing capacity to meet client demand. According to information provided by Hydrocarbon Processing's Construction Boxscore, around 280 new petrochemical projects were announced between 2016 and 2018, an increase of 42% from the previous year. This may significantly impact the petrochemical industry's expansion rate, creating market growth opportunities over the forecast period.
The global petrochemicals market is segmented into one category: Product.
Based on the product, the petrochemicals market is bifurcated into ethylene, propylene, butadiene, benzene, xylene, toluene, and methanol.
The ethylene segment owns the highest market share, with a revenue share of 41.17% in 2022. This is explained by the rise in ethylene demand across several sectors, including building, packaging, and transportation. It is anticipated that the consumption of ethylene in emerging economies like India, Brazil, Vietnam, and Thailand will increase due to the countries' ongoing modernization and thriving automotive and packaging sectors over the forecast period. It is anticipated that increased use of polyethylene, High-density Polyethylene (HDPE), and Low-density Polyethylene (LDPE) will support the expansion of the petrochemicals market.
The methanol segment is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 7.08% during the forecast period. Acetic acid and formaldehyde, used in foams, adhesives, foam solvents, plywood subfloors, and windscreen washer solutions, are made using methanol as a feedstock. Due to its strong demand in several end-user industries, including construction, paints and adhesives, medicines, plastics, and automotive, methanol demand is expected to increase.
Butadiene ranked second in product categories in 2022 and was responsible for 26.39% of total revenue. It is primarily used as a chemical intermediary and a monomer when making polymers like styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR), polybutadiene rubber (PBR), polychloroprene (PBR), and nitrile rubber (NR). Butadiene derivatives have experienced significant growth in demand, particularly in China, India, and other Asian nations, due to the flourishing end-user industries such as automotive, consumer goods, construction, and other industries.
Based on regions, the global petrochemicals market is analyzed across North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and LAMEA.
Asia-Pacific is the most significant global petrochemical market shareholder and is estimated to exhibit a CAGR of 7.1% during the forecast period. This is due to the rising demand from the consumer goods sector. Demand for petrochemical goods like plastics, fertilizers, packaging, clothes, electronics, medical equipment, detergents, and tires increased dramatically due to the rapid economic expansion in emerging economies like China, India, and other ASEAN nations. China, the leading actor in the region, has been making aggressive investments in the switch to alternate feedstock for petrochemical production, such as naphtha and natural gas, rather than relying on coal-to-chemical manufacturing to supply raw materials to its sizable domestic industrial base.
Additionally, the region has added a lot of crude oil refining capacity over the past ten years, and this rising trend is anticipated to continue during the projected period. The demand for consumer products is predicted to increase along with people's ability to spend more money. New petrochemical complexes will likely be built in the area in response to rising consumer product demand, which will be advantageous and lead to market expansion.
North America is expected to grow significantly due to rising investment in petrochemical production facilities. The region's upstream petroleum sector has grown dramatically over the past ten years due to technological advancements, particularly shale oil extraction by hydraulic fracturing. In addition, oil and gas production in the region has surpassed domestic fuel needs. Creating additional manufacturing units and value addition is expected to receive investors' attention. The availability of surplus crude oil and plans by several major international chemical companies to build new facilities or expand existing ones in the region is expected to fuel market expansion.
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