The market for blowing agents is expected to expand at a CAGR of 2.27% during the forecast period of 2019 - 2024. Major factors driving the market studied is rise in demand for polymeric insulation foams for buildings, automotive, and appliances. stringent environmental regulations regarding blowing agents is expected to hinder the growth of the market studied.
- High Demand for Zero Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP) and Low Global Warming Potential (GWP) Blowing Agents is likely to act as an opportunity in the future.
- In terms of revenue, North America dominated the market studied during the forecast period. In terms of volume, Asia-Pacific dominated the global market.
Key Market Trends
Increasing Demand from the Building and Construction Industry
- Owing to their non-VOC, non-ozone depleting, low global warming potential, and reduced energy consumption, blowing agents are environmentally acceptable, and are thus, used in building and construction. They help to create better uniform components, resulting in better, tighter insulation, higher energy efficiency, and limited energy consumption.
- Blowing agents are used as a component in building insulation, such as block pipe and roof insulation, doors, sheathing, and in structures that require foundation. They are also used as sealants for windows and doors.
- They are majorly used in polyurethane foams that have high utilization in pipes to prevent loss of heat and to maintain temperatures even during cold climates, to avoid freezing or cracking for long-distance heating.
- They are also used in phenolic foams, but with limited usage. Phenolic foams are majorly used in panels to act as insulating barriers in roofing, wall cavities, and floor insulation. The increasing construction activities worldwide is expected to significantly boost the blowing agents market.
- In North America, the demand from the United States is expected to increase, owing to the major growth in office buildings and in the residential, healthcare, & commercial sectors. The construction industry in the United States witnessed a steady growth in 2018 (by about 5%), as a result of increased private sector expenditure on residential construction and office space expansion.
- The Asia-Pacific region dominates the building and construction sector, with India, China, and various other South East Asian countries driving the market growth significantly.
- The positive factors like the aforementioned ones are expected to drive the market growth through the forecast period.
China to Dominate the Asia-Pacific Market
- As a Group I member, China is expected to freeze HFC production and use at agreed baseline levels, by or before 2024, and is expected to phase down the production and use, beginning with a 10% phasedown below freeze levels, by 2029.
- Though the usage of CFC-11 was banned internationally in 2010, owing to the ozone depletion effects of the substance, evidence has been found proving the illegal production and usage of CFC-11 as a blowing agent in the rigid polyurethane foam insulation sector. According to a field study carried out by the Environmental Investigative Agency, a UK-based NGO, the atmospheric levels of CFC-11 in China are significantly greater than expected, proving the harmful nature of CFC-11.
- Apart from the banned CFCs and HCFCs (whose usage is regulated and is expected to phase out by 2040), China has been using alternative blowing agents, like preblended CP (cyclopentane), HFO blends, and water.
- China has the world's largest construction industry. However, the growth rate of the industry has become increasingly modest, as the Chinese government is looking to shift toward a services-led economy.
- China has the second-largest packaging industry in the world and is expected to witness a consistent growth during the forecast period, owing to the rise of customized packaging, increased demand for microwave food, snack foods, and frozen foods, among others.
- China has the world's largest textile and apparel industry, which is also a key player for the country's economy. However, there has been a drop in the market share occupied by the country in the global apparel export market, owing to the trade war with the United States and maturation of the market.
- Hence, the aforementioned factors are likely to affect the demand for blowing agents in China during the forecast period.
The global market for blowing agents is fragmented. There are many local players in the market along with international players. The major companies include Honeywell International Inc., The Chemours Company, Arkema, Sinochem Group Co. Ltd, Nouryon, etc.
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