The global phosphoric acid market was valued at US$ 13,399.62 Mn in 2017 and is anticipated to register a stable CAGR of 3.0% from 2018 to 2026, according to a new report published by Transparency Market Research (TMR) titled “Phosphoric Acid Market: Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends, and Forecast, 2018–2026.” The global phosphoric acid market is driven by rise in the demand for phosphate fertilizers. Asia Pacific accounts for a major share of the global phosphoric acid market, due to increased usage of diammonium phosphate (DAP) in agricultural activities in the region.
Rise in Demand for Diammonium Phosphate (DAP) projected to drive Market
Declining Arable Land per Capita likely to offer Attractive Growth Opportunities
As the population is increasing primarily in cities, the farmland per capita is decreasing and higher food production is required from each acre of the farmland. According to the data from the FAO (Food & Agriculture Organization), the arable land per capita is expected to decrease from 0.25 hectare per person to 0.19 hectare per person between 2010 and 2050. This, in turn, calls for increased yield from each unit of the planted area. Also, the arable land is limited, due to the industrialization. Most arable land is concentrated in Brazil. Therefore, the only viable method to increase in the crop production is to raise the yield in existing farms in countries such as China, India, Russia, Africa, and the U.S. This can be achieved by optimizing the use of phosphoric acid in the form of potash fertilizers and that of water and seeds. Also, improvement in the quality of life and decrease in the arable land led by growing population are resulting in increased consumption of fruits and vegetables. These fruits and vegetables need phosphate fertilizers for their better growth and higher yields. Thus, the decreasing arable land per capita is providing lucrative growth opportunities to the global phosphoric acid market.
Environmental Impact of Phosphoric Acid anticipated to hamper Phosphoric Acid Market
The environmental impact of phosphoric acid and phosphates, in general, has been investigated over the years and with the recent and relatively clear results, regulation have been imposed on the use of these chemicals. Phosphoric acid contains phosphates, which impact water bodies and lead to an imbalanced system. Presence of phosphates is necessary for plant growth; however, increase in the phosphate content leads to increased growth of plants in water bodies such as algae. This reduces the supply of oxygen and light to the animal life in water bodies and creates an ecological imbalance. This cycle of pollution is a well-documented fact and is also the reason why phosphoric acid is being heavily regulated and banned in several regions across the world. Thus, the environmental impact of phosphoric acid hampers the global phosphoric acid market.
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Fertilizers Segment to dominate Global Phosphoric Acid Market
The global phosphoric acid market has been segmented based on application and region. Based on application, the market can be divided into fertilizers, food additives, animal feed, and others. Fertilizers is the dominant segment of the phosphoric acid market. It has been sub-segmented into diammonium phosphate (DAP), monoammonium phosphate (MAP), trisodium phosphate (TSP), and others. Phosphoric acid can be combined with ammonia and granulated to produce solid fertilizers such as DAP and MAP. It can be evaporated to produce merchant-grade phosphoric acid (MGA) or further evaporated to produce superphosphoric acid (SPA), which is then converted into a liquid fertilizer. Among fertilizers, DAP is the mostly used fertilizer, followed by MAP and TSP. These fertilizers supply the soil with elements such as nitrogen and phosphorus in a form that is usable by plants.
Asia Pacific dominates Global Phosphoric Acid Market
Among regions, Asia Pacific accounted for a major (58%) share of the global phosphoric acid market in 2017. Presence of a large number of phosphate rock reserves in the region is attracting a large number of customers of phosphoric acid toward the market in Asia Pacific. Rise in the use of phosphate fertilizers is anticipated to provide lucrative growth opportunities to manufacturers of phosphoric acid in Asia Pacific in the next few years. In Asia Pacific, China is the key exporter, while India is the leading importer of phosphoric acid. In terms of volume, China is the major consumer of phosphoric acid, followed by India. High demand for phosphoric acid in Asia Pacific can be ascribed to increase in agricultural activities in countries across the region. Manufacturers in Asia Pacific are engaged in the production of phosphate fertilizers such as diammonium phosphate (DAP), monoammonium phosphate (MAP), and trisodium phosphate (TSP). The phosphoric acid markets in both Western and Central Europe are fairly mature. The market in Eastern Europe is expected to expand at a significant pace during the forecast period. Phosphate reserves have been explored in Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan. With this, new phosphoric acid plants are expected to be established in these countries in the near future. Several phosphoric acid plants have also been explored in Russia.
High Degree of Competition among Established Players
Key players profiled in the report on the global phosphoric acid market are The Mosaic Company, Nutrien Ltd., Israel Chemicals Ltd., OCP Group, Yara International, Maaden, Eurochem Group AG, WengFu Group, Prayon S.A., J.R. Simplot Company, Solvay, and CECA (Arkema Group). These players account for almost 50% share of the global phosphoric acid production capacity and are forward integrated. Manufacturers of phosphoric acid are mostly concentrated in countries/regions where phosphate rock reserves are found in abundance; for example, China, Russia, North Africa, and North America.
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