Global hydrochloric acid (HCl) or muriatic acid market is poised to witness growth over the forecast period owing to increasing demand from application industries such as water treatment, food processing and oil & gas. In addition, growing HCl use in steel and pharmaceutical industry is expected to drive the market over the next six years. However, uncertain raw material supply and resulting price fluctuations are anticipated to hamper the market growth. Furthermore, stringent government regulations concerning CFC emissions during HCl production is expected to act as a market restraint over the forecast period. Increasing investments in the oil & gas sector along with the mining industry has resulted in market participants undertaking R&D for application development providing ample opportunities for market growth. In addition, developments in chemical manufacturing sector are poised to positively influence the market growth in the next six years. Growing HCl applications in pharmaceutical industry for pH control, use as a catalyst, deionization of water and as a reduction agent are further expected to create growth opportunities.
Asia Pacific was the market leader in HCl consumption in 2013 owing to industrial development in India, Indonesia and China. Middle East, Canada, Indonesia and China are anticipated to witness the fastest growth on account of growing oil & gas industry over the forecast period. Major HCl end-use includes ore processing, calcium chloride & ethyl dichloride production. Additionally, niche applications of HCl include use in leather, dyes and pigments. HCl is produced by four basic methods including the combination of hydrogen and chlorine; the chlorination of organic chemicals; the salt-sulfuric acid production process and as a co-product during silica manufacturing.
Growing M&A by major industry participants such as acquisition of Chloralkali plant by PVS in Thailand to serve increasing customer demand; Tessenderlo Partecipazioni S.p.A by International Chemical Investors Group (ICIG) and Virdia by Stora Enso for USD 62 million are expected to augment the industry rivalry. Other industry participants include Allan Chemical Corporation, GFC Chemicals, Eco-Tec, Inc., Basic Chemical Solutions, LLC, Brainerd Chemical Co, Inc., AkzoNobel N.V., Qingdao Henley Co., Ltd., Compound Solutions Inc. and International Petrochemicals Pvt. Ltd.
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