The solvents market is projected to grow from USD 21.8 billion in 2020 to USD 30.0 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 6.6% during the forecast period. Growing demand for home care, personal care, pharmaceuticals are projected to drive the demand for solvents across regions. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) are compounds which form ground-level ozone and particulate matter and are main constituents of smog. Stringent regulations in Europe and North America for the reduction of VOCs are projected to drive the demand for bio & green solvents.
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Montreal Protocol of 1987 and its succession amendments regulate the usage of Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS). These are implemented into European Legislation by the regulation EC 1005/2009 on substances that deplete the ozone layer. Under this regulation, carbon tetrachloride and methyl chloride are regulated. Carbon tetrachloride shows a stratospheric Ozone Depleting Potential (ODP), and therefore its use is regulated. Therefore, only a small fraction of carbon tetrachloride is used as an industrial and laboratory solvent. Methyl chloride has very low stratospheric ODP, and it is listed as a “new substance” under the ODS regulation. Each participant in the supply chain is required to report annually relevant statistical data of these substances to European and national authorities. Thus, their usage is regulated.
In addition, the implementation of the EU’s solvents emission directive, which came into force in various countries between 2005 and 2007, has led to a decline in the sales of Perchloroethylene (PERC) in Europe and the US. In the EU and the US, efforts are underway to remove PERC from the dry cleaning industry.
Technological advancements leading to innovation
Technological advancements create an opportunity for the growth of the solvents market. Europe and North America are characterized by extensive experience and knowledge in the solvents market. The market is experiencing rapid growth in emerging economies. Advanced technologies and latest equipment, coupled with the application of new systems, are driving the demand for improved products in both developed and developing countries. The introduction of Gas-to-Liquids (GTL) technology was developed by Shell in 2014 have helped the solvents market to develop. Some of the major players investing in R&D are Royal Dutch Shell PLC. (Netherlands), and BASF SE (Germany).
1. In May 2018, Royal Dutch Shell PLC, started the operation of the second ethylene cracker at Nanhai Petrochemicals Complex in Huizhou, Guangdong Province, China. The company started the production through a joint venture of China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) and Shell Nanhai B.V. (Shell). The expansion helped the company manufacture ethylene oxide, ethylene glycol, propylene oxide, polyols, polyolefins, phenol and oxo-alcohols through OMEGA, SMPO, and polyols technologies.
2. In May 2018, BASF SE (Germany) and ExxonMobil (US) signed an agreement to jointly develop new gas treating solvents and process technologies to be used for natural gas processing and petroleum refining.
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