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Propylene Oxide Market

Market Study on Propylene Oxide: Polyether Polyols to Remain Key End Use Over Decade

Propylene Oxide Market by Application (Polyether Polyols, Propylene Glycols, Propylene Glycol Ethers, and Others)

Market Snapshot

According to Persistence Market Research's most recent market report, the global market for propylene oxide has been estimated to reach a value of US$ 18,453.8 Mn in 2023. The market for propylene oxide is expected to reach US$ 30,636.7 Mn in value by 2033 with a steady growth rate of 5.2%.

Attributes Key Insights

Propylene Oxide Sales (2022A)

US$ 17,533.0 Mn

Propylene Oxide Demand (2023E)

US$ 18,453.8 Mn

Propylene Oxide Market Projections (2033F)

US$ 30,636.7 Mn

Value CAGR (2023-2033)


Collective Value Share: Top 3 Countries (2023E)


Propylene oxide (C3H6O), is a synthetic cyclic ether that is mostly made by either dehydrochlorinating propylene chlorohydrin or indirectly oxidizing propylene. Propylene Oxide is widely used as a precursor in the manufacturing of numerous chemicals as well as in the automotive, electronics, textile, and furniture industries. South Asia Pacific region to remain one of the fastest growing market owing to significantly growing end use industries.

Propylene oxide is used as a fumigant to eliminate insect and bacterial infestations in soil and packaged food goods. Also, very small amounts of propylene oxide are employed to sterilize medical equipment. With the automotive sector growing rapidly, demand for propylene oxide is also gaining pace due to wide application in this industry. Demand for a more sturdy and strong automobile structure is resulting in high propylene oxide consumption.

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Historical (2017-22) v/s Forecast (2023-33) Market Outlook for Propylene Oxide Market

According to the historical analysis, the market for propylene oxide expanded at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.6% from 2017 to 2022. The pandemic crisis caused a significant drop in the growth of the market, owing to production and supply chain disruptions, and less demand created from the end-use sectors, particularly from automotive and construction. The pandemic had the greatest impact on the construction, automotive, and transportation industries, with a direct impact on the metal sector, and, as a result, on propylene oxide sales.

The market is projected to expand at a CAGR of 5.2% over the forecast timeframe influenced by significant growth of the medical industry. Extending human lifespan and increasing costs and innovations in the medical sector have accelerated the growth of the polyurethane market in the medical device industry. The proliferation of new technologies over the past few decades has increased the use of polyurethanes in the medical industry.

Polyurethane-containing devices such as non-allergic gloves, medical apparel, hospital bedding, hip implants, and wound dressings are widely used in the medical industry. Growing demand for pacemakers and short-term implants as well as growth in the healthcare industry is expected to provide opportunities for the rapid growth of propylene oxide, which is estimated to influence the overall growth of the propylene oxide market during the forecast period.

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Market Dynamics

Increasing demand from various end-use industries creates ample space for propylene oxide.

Propylene oxide is a commercially important chemical catering applications in various industries as an intermediate for a wide array of products. The growth of propylene oxide is primarily attributable to the growth of its end-use industries such as the construction, automotive, textile, and aerospace industries. For instance, propylene oxide is extensively used in the manufacturing of construction chemicals, paints, grouts, coatings, waterproofing materials, and adhesives.

Propylene oxide involves in the manufacturing of propylene glycol, which is further used in several food products, such as cake mix, drink mix, dried soups, dressings, soft drinks, bread, fast foods, and dairy products. Surging demand for packaged food products is anticipated to boost the consumption of propylene glycol across the globe.

On the other hand, propylene oxide is also used in the agriculture sector as a sterilant and an insecticidal fumigant, to control insect infestations, bacteria contamination, mold contamination, and microbial spoilage of food products and prevent insects in non-food products. The aforementioned factors are expected to bolster the consumption of propylene oxide during the forecast period.

Availability of substitute products and concerns toward the toxic nature of propylene oxide constraints the market growth

In humans and animals, exposure to propylene oxide produces ocular and respiratory irritation. Even with weak solutions, skin contact can necrosis in humans and induce irritation. Propylene oxide properties also have a slight depressive effect on the central nervous system. Animals exposed to propylene oxide inhalation for long periods of time have had inflammatory lesions and neurological consequences in their nasal passages, trachea, and lungs.

Propylene oxide is listed as a Group B2 probable carcinogen by the EPA. Hence, the toxic nature of propylene oxide is anticipated to hamper the growth of the global propylene oxide market during the forecast period. The growing adoption of substitute products, such as alkylene carbonate as a viable alternative to synthesizing liquid polyols is also expected to be the key factor restraining the market growth.

Thriving demand from the Automotive and Construction Industry to provide opportunities for Propylene Oxide Manufacturers

Propylene oxide is increasingly being used in various industries such as construction and automotive. The construction industry is paying more and more attention to the construction of energy-efficient buildings, which has resulted in an increased demand for polyurethane materials.

Whether a rigid foam is used as a sandwich element for new structural and insulating blocks or spray foam for energy retrofitting, polyurethane foam is at the heart of modern energy management. The growing automotive sector in various emerging economies promises to improve profitability for propylene oxide suppliers over the coming years.

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Country-wise Insights

What is the Growth Outlook of the Propylene Oxide Market in the U.S.?

U.S. accounts for nearly 21.9% of the global propylene oxide market and is expected to witness significant CAGR during 2023-2033. Owing to the presence of several key manufacturers and propylene oxide end-use industries, the country is also expected to be a prominent market in the business of propylene oxide. The increased adoption of advanced technologies in North America is contributing to the region's market growth.

Propylene oxide sales in the United States are expected to rise in the coming years as the building and construction industries expand. Propylene oxide consumption in the United States is expected to rise significantly as a result of strong auto demand and stable property market development. The presence of a large automotive, aerospace, and construction industry is expected to boost propylene oxide sales.

What is the Growth Outlook of the Propylene Oxide Market in China?

The market for propylene oxide in China is estimated to witness a growth rate of 5.8% during the forecast period. Due to rising demand from a range of industries, including automotive and transportation, as well as the rapidly growing industrial economy of the nation, China has developed into a profitable market for propylene oxide. China is expected to witness a slowdown in the industrial growth owing to lockdown implementation in the country in the recent times.

More orders for vehicles and other applications have been placed as a result of rising purchasing power in China, which has significantly increased the demand for propylene oxide in China over the past decade. Production and demand will continue to grow over the next decade as well. China's economy has maintained strong growth for more than two decades, driven by continued growth in industrial production, imports and exports, consumer consumption, and investments.

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Category-wise Insights

What is the demand outlook of the Polyether Polyols segment in the Propylene Oxide market?

The market for propylene oxide is expected to be dominated by polyether polyols with a value share of 69.7% in the global market. Propylene Oxide is extensively used in the manufacturing of polyether polyols and the growth of the propylene oxide (PO) market is highly dependent on its use in polyether polyols.

Increasing usage of polyether polyols for urethane and non-urethane applications, such as rigid foam, flexible foam, coatings, adhesives, surfactants, and oil demulsifiers has led to increased production and consumption of polyether polyols in end-use industries.

What is the demand outlook of the Propylene Glycols segment in the Propylene Oxide market?

Propylene glycol segments account for nearly 19.4% of the global propylene oxide market in 2023 and are expected to witness significant growth during the forecast period. Propylene glycol is a clear, colorless, and hygroscopic liquid that finds applications in various industries, such as the chemical, food, and pharmaceutical industries.

Significant growth of these end-use industries will boost the consumption of propylene glycols in the coming years. Increase in investment in the manufacturing sector in the field of chemical and pharmaceuticals to bolster the consumption volume in the coming years.

Competitive Landscape

key propylene oxide manufacturers are focusing on the development of new products that can cater to more niche segments. Key players in the market are also focusing on strengthening their supply chain to stay at the forefront of the market competition. The majority of key players are focusing on the acquisition of small players, whereas small-scale companies need to make significant investments in R&D to introduce new products and enhance their presence across the globe.

For instance,

In June 2022, Indorama Ventures Public Company Limited (IVL) signed a license agreement with Shandong Binhua New Material Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of Befar Group to build, own and operate a propylene oxide (PO), t-Butanol (TBA), and t-Butyl methyl ether (MTBE) co-production unit. On completion, the company will able to produce 600,000 tons of propylene, 800,000 tons of butane isomerization, 150,000 tons of synthetic ammonia, 240,000 tons of propylene oxide and 742,000 tons of MTBE per year

In December 2021, Chevron Phillips Chemical announced to the expansion of its propylene business in Baytown, Texas, within the company’s Cedar Bayou facility.

Scope of Report

Attribute Details

Forecast Period


Historical Data Available for


Market Analysis

  • USD Million for Value
  • Kilo Tons for Volume

Key Countries Covered

  • U.S.
  • Canada
  • Brazil
  • Mexico
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • France
  • U.K.
  • Spain
  • Russia
  • China
  • Japan
  • South Korea
  • India
  • ANZ
  • GCC Countries
  • Turkey
  • Northern Africa
  • South Africa

Key Segments Covered

  • Application
  • Region

Key Companies Profiled

  • LyondellBasell Industries
  • The Dow Chemicals
  • SK Chemicals
  • Royal Dutch Shell
  • Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd.
  • Huntsman International LLC.
  • AGC Chemicals
  • Repsol
  • CSPC Pharmaceutical Group Limited
  • Air Liquide
  • Air Products and Chemicals, Inc.
  • China Petrochemical Corporation
  • Eastman Chemical Company
  • Mitsui Chemicals, Inc.
  • PetroChina International Co., Ltd.
  • Ineos Group Limited
  • Tokuyama Corporation
  • Hanwha Group

Report Coverage

  • Market Forecast
  • Company Share Analysis
  • Competition Intelligence
  • DROT Analysis
  • Market Dynamics and Challenges
  • Strategic Growth Initiatives

Customization & Pricing

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Propylene Oxide Market Segmentation

By Applications, the Propylene Oxide market is segmented as:

  • Polyether Polyols
  • Propylene Glycols
  • Propylene Glycol Ethers
  • Others
    • Flame Retardants
    • Fumigants
    • Textile Surfactants
    • Modified Starch

By Region:

  • North America
  • Latin America
  • Europe
  • East Asia
  • South Asia & Pacific
  • Middle East & Africa

- Companies Covered in This Report -

  • LyondellBasell Industries Holdings B.V.
  • The Dow Chemicals
  • SK Chemicals
  • Royal Dutch Shell
  • Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd.
  • Huntsman International LLC.
  • AGC Chemicals
  • Repsol
  • CSPC Pharmaceutical Group Limited
  • Air Liquide
  • Air Products and Chemicals, Inc.
  • China Petrochemical Corporation
  • Eastman Chemical Company
  • Mitsui Chemicals, Inc.
  • PetroChina International Co., Ltd.
  • Ineos Group Limited
  • Tokuyama Corporation
  • Hanwha Group

- Frequently Asked Questions -

The global market of Propylene Oxide is estimated to reach a valuation of US$ 18,453.8  Mn in 2023.

The Propylene Oxide demand is anticipated to witness a growth rate of 5.2% over the forecast period of 2023 and 2033 in terms of value.

According to PMR analysis, The Dow Chemical Company, Huntsman International LLC., Royal Dutch Shell, LyondellBasell Industries Holdings B.V., Sumitomo Chemical Company, Limited, AGC Chemicals Company, among others are identified as the key manufacturers in the Propylene Oxide market.

Key players in the global Propylene Oxide market are expected to account for about 40-45% of the overall market share.

The top countries driving the global Propylene Oxide demand are the India, China,  and the U.S.

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