Wet Chemicals Market size is forecast to reach $700 million by 2025, after growing at a CAGR of 6% during 2020-2025. Surging demand for wet chemicals from electrical and electronic industries for etching and manufacturing of integrated and printed circuit boards is escalating the market growth. Wet Chemicals are used as a disinfectant in personal care products such as aftershave lotions and hand sanitizers. Increasing usage of wet chemicals such as hydrogen peroxide and sulfuric acid in agrochemical industries for manufacturing pesticides is also accelerating the growth of wet chemicals market size. Wet chemicals are also used for detecting carbonate ions in carbonate testing. However, sulfuric acid is a highly corrosive chemical that is potentially explosive in concentrated form and can cause severe skin burns, irritate the nose and throat, which in turn hampers the growth of the wet chemicals market share during 2020-2025.
Chinese government ambitious “Made in China 2025” plan to achieve independence from foreign supply for semiconductors and integrated circuits is likely to boost the growth of wet chemicals market.
Increasing environmental concerns and government restrictions on use of plastics boosts the paper industry which in turn augments the wet chemicals market.
Rise in demand of wet chemicals from health care industries also contribute to the market growth.
Chemical Type – Segment Analysis
Hydrogen Peroxide segment holds the largest share of more than 30% in the wet chemicals market in 2019. According to trade map, total hydrogen peroxide import increased by 18% and accounts for $908,349 globally in 2018. Use of high purity hydrogen peroxide as propellants in aircraft and rockets drives the growth of wet chemicals market. Hydrogen Peroxide also find various applications in pharmaceuticals and medical industries including dental or wound disinfectant and decontamination of surgical instruments, which further boosts the wet chemicals market. Accelerating use of hydrogen peroxide as a bleaching agent in paper industry and for the treatment of natural and synthetic fibers in the textile industry is likely to aid the growth of market.
Grade- Segment Analysis
Based on the grade, industrial grade segment holds the largest share of more than 30% in the wet chemicals market. Wet chemical of industrial grades is used as intermediates in agrochemical industry for production of pesticides and as an electrolyte in batteries. Increasing environmental concerns and rising demand for electric vehicles is boosting the demand of lithium ion batteries which in turn accelerates the growth of wet chemicals market. According to International Energy Agency (IEA), global stock of electric vehicles increased by 63% in 2018. Thus, increase in electric vehicles escalated the use of wet chemicals as an electrolyte in batteries.
End-Use Industry – Segment Analysis
Electronic segment holds the largest share of more than 25% wet chemicals market in 2019. Wet chemicals such as hydrogen peroxide and sulfuric acids are used as an oxidizing and cleaning agent in the manufacture of semiconductors and printed circuit board. An increase in demand for electronic appliances increases the use of printed circuit boards which further propels the growth of wet chemicals market. According to the Industry association for Printed Circuit Boards (IPC), total North American printed circuit board shipments in April 2019 increased by 6.6% compared to April 2018, subsequently fueling the wet chemicals market. Also, according to trade map, the total import of electronic integrated circuits in China accounted for $305.9 Million in 2019.
COVID-19 has badly impacted the wet chemicals market. Lack of manpower has led many manufacturing companies to stop their production which further results in their downfall. Electronic, aerospace, and textile industries are facing huge losses, thus affecting the demand for wet chemicals. According to the Indian Cellular & Electronic Association of India, the shutdown would lead to a lack of $1,309.2 Mn to $1,963.8 Mn in 2020. However, continuous use of hydrogen peroxide and isopropyl alcohol in pharmaceuticals companies during this pandemic for making disinfectants and hand sanitizers is boosting the growth of wet chemicals market.
Geography – Segment Analysis
Asia Pacific has dominated the wet chemicals market with a share of more than 35% in 2019 followed by North America and Europe. Population growth coupled with rapid industrialization is driving the growth of wet chemicals market in APAC region. Increasing demand for apparel and expansion of textile industries across the country is also aiding the growth of market. According to Indian Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF), India’s textile and apparel exports accounted for US$ 38.70 billion in 2019 and is expected to increase to US$ 82.00 billion by 2021, subsequently augmenting the demand of hydrogen peroxide for the bleaching process. Moreover, growing use of wet chemicals such as phosphoric acid in fertilizers and pesticides for better crop productivity by nations like China, India, Malaysia, and Indonesia are also contributing to the growth of wet chemicals market.
Drivers – Wet Chemicals Market
Growing demand from health care industries
Wet chemicals such as isopropyl alcohol and hydrogen peroxide are widely used in disinfectants and antiseptics in health care industries. Rising health concerns and an increase in health care spending are driving the growth of wet chemicals market. According to the Centre for Medicare and Medicaid Services, total health care spending of the United States grew by 4.6 percent in 2018, reaching $3.6 trillion or $11,172 per person. Also, the outbreak of coronavirus has led many companies to manufacture disinfectants and hand sanitizers which in turn boosts the wet chemicals market.
Increasing usage of paper and restrictions on plastics
Hydrogen peroxide is used as a bleaching agent in paper and pulp industry. To overcome the environmental impacts of plastics, the demand of paper for packaging applications is increasing which further drives the growth of wet chemicals. According to the environmental paper network (EPN), paper use is steadily increasing year on year and exceeded to 400 million tons per year in 2018. Moreover, government regulations to lower the use of plastics also boost the growth of market. For instance, New York has restricted the use of plastics by passing Senate Bill 1508 in 2019.
Challenges – Wet Chemicals Market
Harmful effects on human health and fluctuation of chemicals prices
Although wet chemicals find wide range of application, but the presence of harmful chemical ingredients and their impact on the health restraint the growth of market. For example, the exposure to wet chemicals can cause severe skin burns, can irritate the nose and throat and cause difficulties in breathing. Furthermore, fluctuating prices of chemical is also a major challenge for wet chemicals market. For instance, in October 2019, Arkema has raised price for its hydrogen peroxide range by $ 33.65/DMT to cover increasing electricity and labor costs. Whereas, Solvay raised the prices in September 2018 by $155 per dry metric ton in Europe for all hydrogen peroxide grades and derivatives. Additionally, the disruption of global supply chain due to COVID-19 and trade war between China and the US has acts as a major factor for fluctuating the prices, which in turn act as a challenging factor to the market growth.
Technology launches, acquisitions and R&D activities are key strategies adopted by players in the wet chemicals market report. Major players in the wet chemicals market are KMG Chemicals, BASF SE, Avantor Inc., Honeywell International LLC, KANTO CHEMICAL CO. INC., Solvay, Evonik Industries AG, Eastman Chemical Company, Zhejiang Kaisn Fluorochemical Co. Ltd., Technic Inc., among others.
In November 2018, Indian Peroxide Limited (IPL) expanded its business by establishing 125TPD hydrogen peroxide plant complex in Gujarat, India which produces hydrogen peroxide in 35%, 50%, and 60% concentration.
In May 2018, Arkema launched new grade of Hydrogen Peroxide, Valsterane S-HP for spray Aseptic packaging systems and it is available in two different concentrations, 25% and 35% of hydrogen peroxide.