Kaolin Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Kaolin Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Application (Paper, Ceramics, Paint & Coatings, Fiber Glass, Plastics, Rubber, Cosmetics), By Region (North America, Europe, APAC, MEA, CSA), And Segment Forecasts, 2020 - 2027

  • Published Date: Feb, 2020
  • Base Year for Estimate: 2019
  • Report ID: 978-1-68038-337-9
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2016 - 2018
  • Number of Pages: 133

Report Overview

The global kaolin market size was valued at USD 4.36 billion in 2019 and is anticipated to expand at a revenue-based CAGR of 3.3% in terms of revenue from 2020 to 2027. Increasing demand for ceramics in the construction industry is expected to remain a key driving factor, as kaolin is the major raw material used for manufacturing ceramic tiles. Increasing construction activities in developing economies, such as China, India, and Brazil owing to the rapid urbanization and industrialization along with greater migration of rural population to urban centers is projected to drive the demand for new housing units. Thereby, positively influencing the demand for the ceramic tiles, which in turn is expected to propel the demand for kaolin.

U.S. kaolin market size

U.S. is among the fast growing countries in the construction industry. According to the United States Census Bureau, the construction spending in the country increased by 3.3% from 2017 to 2018 owing to the rising investment in infrastructure development projects. This increasing number of construction projects is likely to propel the need for ceramics and paints and coatings in the country, which in turn is anticipated to boost the demand for kaolin in the forthcoming years.

Kaolin is used in various industries including paper, plastics, rubber, and fiber glass. Properties, such as smoothness and whiteness, as well as receptiveness to printing inks make the product suitable in the form of fillers and coatings in the paper industry. The demand for paper and paper boards are largely driven by the growing packaging industry, in which paper is being used over plastics as it is an environmentally friendly material. The increasing demand for these materials is anticipated to boost the demand for kaolin in paper industry over the coming years.

Despite the growing demand for kaolin, availability of numerous substitutes such as carbonates, talc, fuller’s clay, and ball clay are anticipated to hinder the market growth over the coming years. These minerals exhibit similar properties and can replace kaolin for filler and coating functions in paper, plastics, paints, refractories and fiberglass industries respectively.

Application Insights

Paper was the largest segment accounted for a volume share of 40.0% of the kaolin market in 2019 owing to the increasing demand for paper boards from the packaging industry. Lightweight and recyclability of paper along with various stringent regulations regarding reducing the use of plastic bags are the factors likely to propel the demand. Kaolin is used for adding a bright and glossy shine and smoothness of fibrous papers during the production of paper. Large particles of kaolin are used as filler and coatings to improve the paper strength.

In ceramics, kaolin is combined with silica and feldspar to increase the plasticity of the material. The mixture is poured into molds of desirable shapes that are further used in porcelain, earthenware, china sanitary ware, electrical porcelain, and wall tiles. Characteristics, such as fine particle size, chemical inertness, absorption properties, refractoriness, white burning feature, and high fusion temperature make it more suitable for ceramics tiles over other clays.

Plastics segment is anticipated to expand at a CAGR of 2.3% in terms of revenue from 2020 to 2027 owing to the rising demand from polyvinyl chloride that is commonly used in construction, automotive, healthcare, and electronics industries. Kaolin is used both as a diluent filler as well as a reinforcing filler in epoxy resins, polyesters, and vinyls. Specific advantages of product over other mineral fillers include its fine particle size, relatively uniform particle size distribution, large surface area, nonabrasive character, low chemical reactivity, and thermal characteristics.

Kaolin is used in paint and coatings as it offers various advantages in the form of better suspension properties, rapid dispersion, corrosion and water resistance, and reduced viscosities to enhance the paint performance. In addition, kaolin-based paints have emerged as a cost-effective option as they can easily substitute expensive pigments such as titanium oxide in paint formulations due to the similar particle size.

Regional Insights

Asia Pacific accounted for the largest revenue share of 41.06% in 2019 owing to the rising demand for paper packaging due to various stringent government regulations, such as GB standards by China on human health safety. The standard includes the quality and safety of paper and paper board packaging used especially in the food industry. Furthermore, increase in disposable income of consumers and ever increasing need for products, such as ceramics, rubber, and paints coupled with the increase in construction activities is anticipated to drive the regional market growth.

In North America, flexible packaging paper from food and beverage sectors is likely to have a positive impact on the paper industry over the forecast period. According to the Association of International Metallizers, Coaters and Laminators (AIMCAL), paper-based containers accounted for a volume share of nearly 17% of food packaging in North America, in 2017. Major food and beverage companies enter into various long-term investment strategies with packaging industry, thus, resulting in the increased demand for paper, which in turn is anticipated to augment market growth.

Global kaolin market share

Europe accounted for a volume share of 31.35% in 2019 owing to rising demand for ceramics form the construction industry. According to the European Ceramic Industry Association, the European Union ceramics industry accounts for around 25% of the global production. Growing domestic ceramics production and consumption, especially in the housing sector is likely to increase the regional product demand over the forthcoming years.

Germany is a leading market for the automotive industry in Europe. The growth of the automotive industry propels the demand for paints, plastics, and rubber used in manufacturing of automobiles. As per Organisation Internationale des Constructeurs d'Automobiles (OICA), the country produced 5,120,409 cars in 2017. The growing demand for luxury cars, small-sized cars, and premium SUVs has led to an increased automotive production in the country. The growth of the automotive industry is expected to influence the demand for kaolin in the country during the forecast period.

Kaolin Market Share Insights

Major market players including BASF SE, Imerys S.A., LB MINERALS Ltd., KaMin LLC, Thiele Kaolin Company, and Sibelco N.V. are adopting various strategies such as capacity expansions, mergers and acquisitions, and new product innovations. For instance, in February 2018, BASF SE started investing USD 200 million in its kaolin business. The company will continue doing so for the next 10 years in order to realize the potential of growth, innovation, and sustainable supply of the product to cater to the rising demand. The investment was intended to provide innovative solutions, sustainable supply, and services.

Report Scope



Base year for estimation


Actual estimates/Historical data

2016 - 2018

Forecast period

2020 - 2027

Market representation

Volume in Kilotons; Revenue in USD Million; & CAGR from 2020 to 2027

Regional scope

North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Central & South America, Middle East & Africa

Country scope

U.S., Canada, Mexico, Germany, U.K., Russia, Turkey, China, India, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Brazil, & Saudi Arabia

Report coverage

Revenue forecast, company share, competitive landscape, growth factors and trends

15% free customization scope (equivalent to 5 analyst working days)

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Segments Covered in the Report

This report forecasts revenue and volume growth at the global, regional, and country levels, and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2016 to 2027. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global kaolin market report on the basis of application and region:

  • Application Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2027)

    • Paper

    • Ceramics

    • Paint & Coatings

    • Fiber Glass

    • Plastic

    • Rubber

    • Pharmaceuticals & Medical

    • Cosmetics

    • Others

  • Regional Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2027)

    • North America

      • U.S.

      • Canada

      • Mexico

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • U.K.

      • Russia

      • Turkey

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • India

      • Japan

      • South Korea

      • Australia

    • Central & South America

      • Brazil

    • Middle East & Africa

      • Saudi Arabia

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