Transparency Market Research has published a new report that presents an executive-level blueprint of the global caustic soda market. The report is titled “Caustic Soda Market – Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast 2014 – 2020” and is available for sale on the company website. According to the findings of the report, the global caustic soda market, which stood at US$30.82 bn in 2013, is expected to reach US$39.75 bn by 2020. If the figures hold true, the global caustic soda market will progress at a CAGR of 3.7% between 2014 and 2020.
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Caustic soda, also known as sodium hydroxide or lye, is an inorganic compound. It is available commercially in the form of pellets, flakes, or granules. Caustic soda has diverse industrial applications due to its strong alkaline nature. It is integral to the manufacture of petroleum products, pulp and paper, alumina, textiles, and soaps and detergents, along with its application in food processing, water treatment, petroleum processing, pharmaceuticals, glass making, and soaps. For commercial purposes, caustic soda is used either in a 50% aqueous solution or as a solid. Industrially, caustic soda is produced by electrolytic chloralkali process.
The report states that the global caustic soda market has been exhibiting steady growth in the last couple of years. It attributes factors such as rapid development of end-use industries such as alumina, pulp and paper, chemicals, and soaps and detergents for the steady growth of the global caustic soda market. Chlor-alkali is an electro-intensive industry, as it uses electricity as a raw material and not as utility. Thus, the energy intensive production process of caustic soda is anticipated to hamper the market in the near future. However, upcoming opportunities in the relatively untapped markets in Africa may open up new growth avenues for the caustic soda market in the near future.
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In terms of volume, organics was the largest application segment of the caustic soda market, accounting for a share of approximately 20% in 2013. Caustic soda is extensively used as a base in the manufacture of various organic chemicals such as methanol, hydroxyl ethyl cellulose, carboxymethyl hydroxyethyl cellulose, cellulose ether, methyl cellulose, and acetic acid. Alumina is projected to be the fastest growing application segment of the caustic soda market during the forecast period owing to increasing demand for aluminum in automotive, packaging, and aerospace applications.
Additionally, pulp and paper accounted for a significant volume share in 2013 due to high demand for caustic soda in bleaching processes. The market for pulp and paper has witnessed a surge in the past few years. Other applications, including textiles, petroleum processing, and food processing, have also been growing at a fast pace over the past few decades. This trend is likely to continue during the forecast period. This, in turn, is expected to drive demand for caustic soda in the near future.