The top five companies in the global – The Dow Chemical Company, INEOS Group Ltd., SABIC, LyondellBasell Industries N.V., and Huntsman Corporation – together accounted for a share of close to 48% in 2015. Transparency Market Research (TMR) finds that this highly fragmented market presents an increasing number of opportunities for players. Once the battle against high initial capital investment is won, companies in the ethanolamines market can benefit from a large number of suppliers of ammonia and ethylene oxide, low threat of substitutes, and a well-educated consumer base.
“An increasing number of companies has been focused on R&D as well as innovation as a key strategy in the ethanolamines market,” the author of the study has observed. “Companies have been striving for increased market penetration by forming partnerships, collaborations, joint ventures, and mergers and acquisitions, thereby rendering them with more and improved resources for research and development.”
Considering the rising focus on reducing the environmental footprint, vendors are likely to divert resources to satisfy the sustainability criteria, the analyst states. Looking to benefit from this leading trend, Akzo Nobel invested US$10 mn in a new R&D center in Strongsville, Ohio in December 2015. The facility is aimed at producing innovative and environmental friendly products.
Surging Demand for Herbicides a Leading Growth Driver
Ethanolamines are one of the significant components used in the production of herbicides. The growing demand for and production of glyphosate – the largest consumed variety of herbicides – has considerably fueled the global ethanolamines market, finds TMR. “The increasing cultivation of genetically modified crops and the rising popularity of no-till farming has spurred the demand for glyphosate,” a TMR analyst states. “Produced in over 20 countries around the world and used in over 130 countries, the demand for glyphosate is set to increase over the forecast period. This in turn will boost the global ethanolamines market.”
The ethanolamines market has also received impetus from the surfactants market, especially in the developing regions of Asia Pacific, Latin America, and the Middle East and Africa.
On the flip side, the volatility in raw material prices threatens to hamper the growth of the ethanolamines market. The growing demand for gas sweetening agents, on the other hand, presents lucrative options for players in the ethanolamines market.
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Agriculture-centric APAC Countries Witnessing Increased Demand for Ethanolamines
The global ethanolamines market will expand at a rather modest growth rate over the forecast period, in terms of volume and value, TMR predicts. In 2015, the opportunity in the ethanolamines market was worth US$2.8 bn and this is projected to surpass US$4 bn by 2024 at a 4.1% CAGR therein. By volume, the demand is estimated to increase at a 3.7% CAGR. Among the key product categories, diethanolamines and triethanolamines led the overall ethanolamines market by volume. In terms of application, surfactants were the leading contributor in 2015 and herbicides are projected to expand at the fastest pace in the coming years.
Geographically, Asia Pacific leads the global ethanolamines market and will retain its position through 2024. “The growth of the agriculture sector in the region is anticipated to attribute to the expansion of the APAC ethanolamines market,” the analyst states. “In addition, the rising demand for detergents and other foaming agents is expected to spur the demand for ethanolamines in Asia Pacific in the years to come.”