Refinery Catalyst Market Share, Size & Trend Report

Refinery Catalyst Market Share, Size & Trend Analysis Report By Material (Zeolites, Metals, Chemical Compounds), By Application (FCC, Alkylation, Hydrogeneration, Hydrotreating, Catalyting Reforming) And Segment Forecasts To 2022

  • Published Date: Mar, 2016
  • Base Year for Estimate: 2015
  • Report ID: 978-1-68038-572-4
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2013-2015
  • Number of Pages: 107

Industry Insights

Global refinery catalyst market size was estimated to be 1,300.8 kilo tons in 2014. The industry is expected to witness significant growth in next seven years on account of increasing demand for high-performance transportation fuel globally. Stringent fuel norms and standards coupled with increasing petroleum derivatives consumption are expected to steer market growth.

These specialty catalysts are used in petroleum refining processes to enhance their operational efficiencies. High refining costs are expected to have a positive impact on demand in the future. Increasing high octane fuel demand, particularly in metropolitan cities in economies including the U.S., Japan, Germany, the UK, and India is expected to positively impact industry expansion.

North America refinery catalyst market

North America zeolite refinery catalysts demand was 94.4 kilo tons in 2014 and is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 2.8% from 2015 to 2022, to reach a total volume of 117.3 kilo tons by 2022.

These materials are widely used to counter complex issues such as metal contamination and heat balance effects in tight oil processing. Increasing tight oil production in the U.S., Russia, China, and Argentina are expected to drive demand over the forecast period.

Refinery catalysts are widely used to counter issues such as metal contamination and heat balance effects in tight oil processing. Increasing tight oil production in the U.S., Russia, China, and Argentina are expected to drive product demand over the forecast period.

Stringent government regulations including those related to ultra-low sulfur diesel (ULSD) and strict emission standards in mature economies are anticipated to drive catalyst demand in the petroleum refining sector. Availability of alternate fuels such as biofuels and adoption of “Go Green” campaigns as well as the environmental policies adopted by nations are the factors that restrain the global refining catalyst market.

Asia Pacific refinery catalysts market is anticipated to witness significant growth on account of increasing energy demand in emerging economies of China and India. Presence of adequate tight oil reserves in China is expected to further complement the Asia Pacific market growth. Major market participants are shifting their focus towards increasing capacities in Asia Pacific in order to cater to the growing demand.

In mature markets, products that help to process difficult feedstock and increase outputs are creating opportunities. Increasing shale gas and tight oil production in the U.S., Russia, and Western Europe are expected to drive the North American and European markets. The market in these regions is characterized by technological innovations and new product development with reduced environment impact.

Material Insights

Zeolites were the majorly used refinery catalyst materials, accounting for over 30% of the global market volume share in 2014. Zeolites have the ability of providing microporosity and adjustable acidity, which pave their way for use as catalyst in refining and petrochemical applications. Zeolites find applications in various processes including olefin alkylation, naphtha isomerization, reforming, hydrocracking, and cracking.

Low cost of chemical compounds as compared to zeolites and metals is expected to supplement the former’s growth over the next seven years. Chemical compounds are expected to emerge as the fastest growing segment and gain share, growing at an estimated CAGR of 3.5% over next seven years.

Zeolites play an important role in enhancing rate of reaction in fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) and hydrocracking. Gaining importance of FCC for converting high molecular weight hydrocarbons into light cuts such as gasoline and diesel in the U.S. is expected to fuel zeolite catalyst demand over the forecast period.

Other materials such as biocatalysts and enzymes maintained over 18% of global market revenue share in 2014 and are expected to witness an above-average growth over the forecast period. Gaining importance of eco-friendly materials in biorefineries is expected to play a crucial role in driving growth for enzyme-based catalyst over the foreseeable future.

Application Insights

Fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) was the largest application segment and accounted for over 45% of the total market volume share in 2014. (FCC) is a type of secondary unit operation and primarily used in producing additional gasoline in the refining process. Escalating global diesel and gasoline consumption as primary transportation fuel is expected to boost product demand in the sector over the forecast period.

Stringent environmental norms and standards regarding FCC gasoline and heavy oil quality may be attributed for high market penetration. The segment is estimated to witness moderate growth over the forecast period owing to increasing penetration of other refinery catalysts applications

Global refinery catalyst market

Alkylation was another major application segment and is anticipated to witness stagnant growth in the future. Hydrotreating is expected to witness a high growth of 4.7% in terms of market value from 2015 to 2022. Catalytic hydrotreating in petroleum refining is done to remove most of the contaminants including nitrogen, sulfur, oxygen, and metals from liquid petroleum fractions.

These contaminants travel through refinery processing units and can have detrimental effects on the equipment, catalysts, and quality of the finished products. Growing concerns towards maintaining minimum contaminant quantities and improving pipeline fluid quality within the refinery processes may attribute to high-penetration in the segment.

Hydrocracking is also estimated to witness above average growth rates over next few years owing to increasing requirement to disintegrate heavier crude oil and residual process streams into lighter components. Low quality gas oil from the atmospheric or vacuum distillation units, FCCU, and the coking units are upgraded to high-quality, clean-burning jet fuel, diesel, and gasoline.

Regional Insights

Asia pacific refinery catalyst market dominated the global demand, accounting for 32.8% of overall volume share in 2014. Increasing refinery throughput in China, India, and South-East Asia coupled with several upcoming capacity expansions in these economies may attribute to high demand.

China had a significant share in global petroleum refining throughput and has emerged as a manufacturing destination for chemical and petrochemical products owing to growing domestic demand coupled with low manufacturing cost as compared to the U.S. and EU countries. Positive outlook of petrochemicals and refining sectors in China and India is expected to fuel market expansion over the forecast period.

Asia Pacific is anticipated to witness the fastest growth over the forecast period and is expected to reach a net demand of over 570 kilo tons by 2022. Population growth coupled with increasing automotive industry growth is anticipated to spur high octane gasoline consumption in the region.

Europe was the second major consumer, accounting for 25.7% of global refinery catalyst market volume share in 2014. The region is estimated to lose share to high growth markets of Asia Pacific and Latin America.

North America refinery catalysts market is anticipated to increase share to account for over 22% of the total demand by 2022. Rising demand for cleaner transportation fuels in the U.S. is expected to increase importance of catalyst used for converting heavy crude oil into light fractions such as gasoline, diesel, and kerosene. Industry growth in chemical and oil & gas sectors in Mexico are other driving factors contributing to industry expansion in North America.

Growing production of aforementioned metals in emerging economies of Chile, China, and South Africa on account of favorable regulatory support for FDI in mineral production is expected to ensure the raw material supply for market players. However, growing demand for these metals in other applications is expected to restrict the raw material availability and may challenge market growth.

Refinery Catalyst Market Share Insights

Global refinery catalyst market is moderately consolidated with top five players including BASF, W. R Grace, Chevron, Exxon Mobil, and DuPont accounting for over 50% of the industry revenue share in 2014. Companies including Materia Inc. and Umicore Ag & Co. Kg have a patent each to their credit whereas W.R. Grace & Co. – Conn entered into an agreement with Dow Chemicals to develop next-generation catalysts for polypropylene production.

Presence of numerous chemical manufacturing companies including DSM, BASF, DuPont, Bayer, Huntsman, and Henkel is expected to have a positive impact on the market. However, high manufacturing cost in Europe as compared to China, India, and Brazil is expected to shift chemical manufacturers’ interest to latter countries. This factor is likely to reduce scope of catalysts in chemical production.

Companies such as Albemarle, BASF, Johnson Matthey, and W.R. Grace are integrated in their operations, where the companies manufacture raw materials such as zeolites and other chemical compounds that are captively consumed for manufacturing heterogeneous and homogenous catalysts.

Report Scope



Base year for estimation


Actual estimates/Historical data

2013 - 2015

Forecast period

2016 - 2022

Market representation                                    

Revenue in USD Million & CAGR from 2012 to 2020

Regional scope

North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, RoW

Report coverage        

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

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

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Segments covered in the report

This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional & country levels and provides an analysis on the latest trends in each of the sub-segments from 2012 to 2020. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the Refinery Catalyst market on the basis of material, application, and region:

  • Material Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2012 - 2020)

    • Zeolites

    • Metals

    • Chemical Compounds

  • Application Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2013 - 2024)

    • FCC

    • Alkylation

    • Hydrogeneration

    • Hydrotreating

    • Catalyting Reforming

  • Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2013 - 2024)

    • North America

    • Europe

    • Asia Pacific

    • RoW

Key questions answered by the report
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