Global Chemicals and Materials Industry Outlook Along with an Overview of the Global Soda Ash Market
Recycle and reuse practices are impacting the sales of virgin materials, resulting into lesser dependency on volume-driven growth. New materials are showcasing potential for driving value-based growth, but chemical companies are still some time away from achieving voluminous production, while maintaining high quality at the same time. Barring few exceptions, a majority of players are still prioritizing short-term volume growth over long-term value growth. Pressure on improving bottom-line is influencing manufacturers to improve efficiency and reduce operational costs. The impact of value-driven growth may not be visible in the short-term, but long-term outlook remains in favor of a balanced approach between value and volume.
Manufacturers are under increasing pressure to incorporate digital solutions in their offerings. Forward-thinking manufacturers are investing in technology to reduce human interference and streamline key operational aspects such as ordering and shipping. Resonating its influence over every industry, Internet of Things (IoT) has the potential to transform and disrupt the chemical sector. Connectivity through IoT devices is gaining traction, whereas product-level sensors on dispensing equipment and barrels are helping manufacturers track their consignments digitally. Through assessment of long-term benefits, chemical companies are capitalizing on digitization by adopting digital platforms & processes that eliminate human error in profit-associated operations.
Manufacturers continue seeking low-priced feedstock in a bid to marginally reduce pre-production costs. Industry leaders are joining forces to replace fossil fuel-derived feedstock with bio-based alternatives. However, concerns related to producing affordable and sustainable feedstock at mass scale remains a challenge. Access to quality and affordable feedstock will continue to remain a focus area for manufacturers. Chemical manufacturing processes are running on limited energy, while volume of feedstock is getting stranded at ports as disapproval from import authorities keeps disrupting supply chains in sectors, such as oleochemicals and petrochemicals industries.
Chemical manufacturers have promised support and adherence to governments & regional authorities that are committing towards green, sustainable initiatives. Development of bio-alternatives is gaining momentum. Research & academic institutes are teaming up with manufacturers to formulate sustainable substitutes for commonly-used chemical substrates. Many companies are keeping a close eye on advancements in “green chemistry.” Shift towards eco-friendly chemicals will gain momentum in the future on the back of government regulations and end-user preference. Rising costs of fossil fuels will also instrument the upsurge for sustainable chemicals manufacturing.
List of factors tracked in the Chemicals and Materials Market Report
- Chemical Industry Value Add
- Chemical Sales
- Per Capita Consumption
- Standard Capacity Factors
- Plastics Consumption Outlook
- Glass Consumption Outlook
- Policies and Regulations
- Historical growth of top players
- Growth in associated markets
- Net trade scenario
- Apparent production capacity
PMR utilizes robust methodology and approach to arrive at market size and related projections. The research methodology for this report is based on 3 dimensional model. We conduct about 45-60 min duration detailed interviews with product manufacturers; apart from this we also collect market feedback from industry experts. To validate this data, we interact with senior panel members having more than 10 years of experience in relevant field. The panel members help in validating the findings and fill the gaps if any. In addition, we leverage on our existing pool of information, paid database and other valid information sources available in public domain. Usually industry interactions extend to more than 50+ interviews from market participants across the value chain.
PMR collects data from secondary sources including company annual reports, association publications, industry presentations, white papers, and company press releases apart from these we leverage over paid database subscriptions and industry magazines to collect market information and developments in exhaustive manner. After being done with desk research, detailed questionnaire and discussion guide is formulated to initiate primary research with key industry personnel; the discussion aims at collecting key insights, growth perspectives, prevalent market trends and quantitative insights including market size and competition developments. Both of these research approaches help us in arriving at base year numbers and market hypothesis.
In this phase, PMR validates the data using macro and micro economic factors. For instance, growth in electricity consumption, industry value added, other industry factors, economic performance, growth of top players and sector performance is closely studied to arrive at precise estimates and refine anomalies if any.
Data Analysis and Projection
Data analysis and projections were made based on proprietary research frameworks and statistical analysis, which was further validated from industry participants. These frameworks include Y-o-Y growth projections, macro-economic factor performance, market attractiveness analysis, key financial ratios, and others.
For public companies we capture the data from company website, annual reports, investor presentations, paid databases. While for privately held companies, we try to gather information from the paid databases (like Factiva) and based on the information we gather from databases we estimate revenue for the companies. In addition, the team tries to establish primary contact with the companies in order to validate the assumptions or to gather quality inputs.
Standard Report Structure
- Executive Summary
- Market Definition
- Macro-economic analysis
- Parent Market Analysis
- Market Overview
- Forecast Factors
- Segmental Analysis and Forecast
- Regional Analysis
- Competition Analysis
The global soda ash market has been segmented into:
- North America
- Latin America
- SEA and Pacific
- Glass and Ceramics
- Soaps and Detergents
- Paper and Pulp
- Water Treatment
Soda ash is progressively being used as a fluxing agent to lower the melting point of the furnace, which is required to melt silica. The utilization of soda ash has reduced the overall energy consumption in glass manufacturing industries; the demand for flat glass and container glass will continue to be significant in upcoming years. Container glass is also being increasingly used in food and beverage and pharmaceutical packaging industries, thereby generating significant traction in the market. There has been a substantial rise in production of glass over the past few years owing to high demand from automotive, and building and construction industries.
Apart from glass manufacturing, soda ash is also used for the manufacturing of a number of chemicals such as sodium silicate, sodium bicarbonate and percarbonate, and sodium chromate and dichromate. It is also used for the manufacturing of dyes, coloring agents, adhesives and sealants, amongst others. Manufacturing of pulp in the paper and pulp industry also consumes soda ash on a large scale. In the metallurgical processing industry, soda ash is utilized for the recycling of aluminum and zinc. An expanding application base is foreseen to be a key driver impacting the growth of global soda ash market.
‘Glass and Ceramics’ stay at the top in terms of the use of soda ash
Over the recent past, there has been a notable increase in the production of glass, majorly flat glass and container glass, amongst others. These glasses use soda ash as an important material for the manufacturing process. Glass and ceramics production has been a major end use of soda ash and is responsible for almost 50% of the overall consumption. There has been noteworthy growth in the production of glass, especially due to rising demand from automotive, construction and renovation industries. Flat glass is increasingly being used in buildings, window panels and vehicles, amongst others. With steady growth of automotive and construction industries, especially in developing countries within Asia Pacific region, consistent rise in glass production has been registered. Furthermore, container glass sales for food packaging, pharmaceutical packaging and personal care packaging is also projected to create traction in the market, which is likely to have a positive impact on the demand for soda ash in near future.
Demand for soda ash is likely to rise steadily owing to higher demand in metallurgy and chemicals
Soda ash is a vital raw material used for the production of various chemical fertilizers, dyes and coloring agents. It is also used as a chemical in preparing pulp for the paper and pulp industry. A number of adhesives and sealants are also being manufactured with the help of soda ash. Several chemicals, such as sodium silicate, sodium bicarbonate and percarbonate, and sodium chromate and dichromate, are produced using soda ash, which is expected to generate significant traction in near future. In the metallurgical processing industry, soda ash is utilized for the recycling of aluminum and zinc. It is also employed for removing phosphates and sulfurs from ferrous and non-ferrous ores. Additionally, soda ash is also added to pools, lakes and spa which helps to maintain alkalinity of water and remove acidity. Aforementioned factors are identified to be primarily responsible for sustained sales of soda ash market on a global level. However, the overall growth prospects remain passive throughout the forecast period.