APAC Tops the Global Cumene Market | Technavio


LONDON–The latest market research report by Technavio on the global cumene market predicts a CAGR of more than 4% during the period 2017-2021.

The report has further segmented the global cumene market into two segments based on application (phenol, acetone, and others) and geography (APAC, the Americas, Europe, and the Middle East and Africa). It provides a detailed illustration of the major factors influencing the market, including drivers, opportunities, trends, and industry-specific challenges.

Here are some key findings of the global cumene market, according to Technavio chemicals and materials researchers:

  • Rise in demand for phenol and its derivatives for various applications: a major market driver
  • In 2016, the phenol segment dominated the market, and it is expected to grow at CAGR of close to 5% through 2021
  • APAC dominated the global cumene market in 2016
  • BP, China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation, ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell, and The Dow Chemical are the major players in the market

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Market growth analysis

The rise in demand for phenol and its derivatives for various applications is one of the major factors driving the global cumene market. Bisphenol A (BPA) is a key ingredient in the production of polycarbonate, and epoxy resins is the largest consumer of phenol. BPA is used regardless of the health and safety-related issues associated with it. Another major application of phenol is its use in the production of phenol-formaldehyde resins. These resins are primarily used in wood adhesives for binding the layers of plies in exterior plywood.

According to Kshama Upadhyay, a lead analyst at Technavio for research on specialty chemicals, “The production of BPA and phenolic resins takes place in almost all the regions, including APAC, the Americas, the EU, and the Middle East and Africa and their demand is highly affected by a region's economic conditions. The production of BPA is high in developed economies such as the US, China, and countries in Europe due to the regulations related to raw materials and cost in the EU and the Americas. There have been many developments in BPA facilities. Several vendors also plan to invest in developing regions that have witnessed an increased demand in the recent years.”

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Geographical analysis

In 2016, APAC was the largest consumer of cumene. During the forecast period, it is expected to grow at the highest CAGR when compared to the other regions. China, South Korea, Japan, and India are the major consumers of cumene in the region. Few new phenol production plants are expected to open in Asia during the forecast period. For instance, PTT Phenol in Thailand has recently acquired a new plant with a production capacity of 250,000 tons/year. Apart from rapid growth in the automotive and construction industries, technological advances have also been witnessed in countries such as China, Japan, and India. These factors are expected to drive the market in the region over the next few years.

Competitive vendor landscape

Several vendors are present in the global cumene market, and the market is dominated by global vendors such as Royal Dutch Shell, ExxonMobil, BP, China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation, and The Dow Chemical. Several regional vendors are present in the cumene market in regions with oil reserves such as the Middle East and APAC. The Middle East is the largest supplier of crude oil. Most of the major players in the market use cumene for the inhouse production of phenol and acetone. Very small amount of cumene is available for sale in the market and consumed for general applications, such as solvents and enamels.

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