Limestone Market: Overview
Limestone is a naturally occurring sedimentary rock. It consists of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) in its extremely pure form. Limestone is created by the accumulation of fossils of various marine organisms such as coral, algae, and molluscs and also by the precipitation of calcium carbonate from oceans, lakes, and other water bodies. It is available in various forms such as stones, aggregates, crushed, and also powders of different dimensions.
The shape, dimension, and size of limestone depends on the purpose of its use. For example, in agriculture, the limestone used is coarse or medium ground, whereas in building & construction, it is preferred to be utilized in its crushed stone form.
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Limestone is employed as a raw material for manufacturing cement, steel, as well as lime, which are of commercial importance in a number of applications. The different variants of limestone based on its application include chemical lime, industrial lime, refractory lime, and construction-based lime.
Limestone Market: Trends
Limestone is used in applications such as construction & construction materials, water treatment, food & beverages, agriculture, plastic, and paper making. The market for limestone is predicted to be driven by the wide range of applications offered by the mineral. There has been a rise in the use of limestone in applications such as metal & paper manufacturing, steel production, and cement & glass manufacturing.
With rapid urbanization and industrialization, demand for cement has increased widely, which is expected to drive the limestone market during the forecast period. Another upcoming application of limestone is its usage in water treatment and agriculture as a fertilizer, since it is capable of neutralizing the acidity of soil and supplying sufficient calcium for plant nutrition.
Limestone is also used as a substitute for lime in biochemical assays and construction activities to a certain extent. The market for limestone is likely to expand rapidly during the forecast period due to the wide range of properties it possesses.
Limestone reacts with acid rain and is known to wear away. Special care needs to be taken of buildings consisting limestone during adverse climatic conditions. This could prove to be a major restraint for the global market.
Limestone Market: Region-wise Outlook
The development of the limestone market has been comparatively fast in Asia Pacific over the last decade, mainly attributed to the presence of emerging economies in the region such as China, which holds the maximum market share globally. Several countries in Asia Pacific have witnessed rapid urbanization over the last few years, which has provided ample scope for the expansion of the market for limestone.
Europe too exhibited substantial growth. The region has a strong presence in the global steel making industry. Manufacturing of steel requires a large amount of limestone as a raw material, which is projected to propel the limestone market in the region during the forecast period. The limestone market in North America is mainly boosted by the need for it in agriculture and water treatment.
The market in Latin America is driven by the demand for the mineral in the agriculture industry, whereas construction & building materials are major applications of limestone in Middle East & Africa. The rising incorporation of limestone in these two sectors is estimated to push the market in Latin America and Middle East & Africa during the forecast period as well as in the future.
Limestone Market: Key Players
Key market players operating in the limestone market include Carmeuse Group S.A., Fels-Werke GmbH, Elliot Stone Company, Inc., Lhoist Group, Tarmac, and Sachaefer Kalk GmbH & Co. KG.
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