Growing Energy Applications and Surging Demand from China Drives the Global Methanol Market, According to New Report by Global Industry Analysts, Inc.

San Jose, California (PRWEB) November 16, 2012

Follow us on LinkedIn The worldwide methanol market is witnessing steady growth in demand, prices and production output. Methanol, a liquid chemical, by virtue of its use in the manufacture of myriad products and in numerous applications that touch our daily lives, has become an integral part of the global economy. Methanol is increasingly gaining popularity as a fuel owing to its ability of being produced from a wide range of feedstock such as natural gas, coal, timber waste, pulp mill black liquor, agricultural waste and even carbon dioxide pollution. In addition, the divergence in the price of crude oil and other hydrocarbon resources such as coal and natural gas is paving the way for the use of methanol and derivatives such as fuels to bridge the energy gap. China is at the forefront of these developments, with the government actively encouraging the use of DME and methanol-blended gasoline for energy applications, and the outstanding growth of the domestic coal-to-olefins industry.

Dynamics of the global methanol market distorted rapidly during the recession. The precipitous fall of major end-use sectors in western economies drastically decreased methanol demand in downstream products including formaldehyde and acetic acid, leading to a capacity surplus in several regions. The overall downstream methanol requirement remained weak during 2009 with the market witnessing modest growth in fuel additives segment. Following the plunge in late 2008 as a result of the global economic recession, international methanol prices continue to remain below the pre-recession levels. However, new capacity additions emerged with the market indicating recovery in demand in late 2009 and 2010.

Global methanol production is presently dominated by developing regions, such as Asia, the Middle East and Latin America. A large number of new plants and capacity expansions are scheduled over the next few years, portending a drastic increase in production capacity. Competition among methanol producers in Asia Pacific and Middle East markets is intensifying. China gained laurels as the largest global methanol producer and consumer in recent years, with the domestic methanol and related derivates industry expanding at an impressive pace in recent years. The Middle East methanol market is highly competitive in terms of methanol pricing, due to the availability of natural gas feedstock. The availability of low cost shale gas is revitalizing methanol production in the North American market, with a corollary effect on methanol trade in Latin America.

Although formaldehyde and acetic acid, which are major chemical intermediates, make up the biggest slice of global demand for methanol, the formaldehyde segment is losing market share to energy applications. Though demand for MTBE declined steeply during the past decade due to the ban on the chemical in US and Canada, and the replacement of MTBE with ethanol and ETBE in developed countries across the world, the demand for MTBE from emerging markets continues to grow, reflecting the improving quality of life in the region.

Tremendous efforts are in the offing for designing hybrid vehicles that run on conventional gasoline as well as various grades of methanol-blended gasoline, with fleet tests already underway in several countries. The United States Open Fuels Standard Act would pave the way for the large scale launch of methanol powered fuel flexible vehicles (FFVs). Following the implementation of the national M85 and M100 fuel standards for automobiles in 2009, the Chinese government is mulling the rollout of a national M15 standard. Worldwide demand for methanol for Gasoline Blending/Combustion Biofuels is rising steadily propelled by soaring international crude oil prices and government legislation, such as the US Renewable Fuel Standard and EU Renewable Energy Directive (RED). Biomethanol, considered as a sustainable fuel, enjoys eligibility for double biofuel credits under the EU Renewable Energy Directive (RED).The segment represents the fastest growing market for the methanol with a projected CAGR of 13.6% through 2018.

Asia Pacific, led by China, is the largest and fastest growing methanol market, as stated by the new market research report on Methanol. Methanol consumption in the region is expected to charge ahead with a projected CAGR of 8.9% for the analysis period, propelled due to the huge appetite for methanol and derivatives in the Chinese market. Demand in the Western Europe region is expected to be modest owing to the sovereign debt crisis, offset to some extent by strong activity in the CIS and Baltic economies.

Key players profiled in the report include Atlantic Methanol Production Company LLC,

BASF SE, BioMCN, JSC Metafrax, LyondellBasell Industries NV, Metanol de Oriente SA,

Methanex Corporation, Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Company Inc., National Iranian Petrochemical Company, PETRONAS, Qatar Fuel Additives Company Ltd., Repsol YPF, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation, Saudi International Petrochemical Company, and Statoil ASA, among others.

The research report titled Methanol: A Global Strategic Business Report announced by Global Industry Analysts Inc., proffers an extensive review of the primary growth drivers and restraints in the methanol market, shedding light on post-recession scenario and key trends shaping the global and regional market. The report also summarizes strategic events, production data, and captures a snapshot of major players operating in this dynamic market. The analysis is backed by quantified estimates and forecasts of annual consumption for the years 2010 through 2018 in terms of volume (Thousand Metric Tons) for major geographic markets – North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Latin America and Rest of World. Key end-uses analyzed in the report include Formaldehyde, Acetic Acid, MTBE/TAME, DME, Gasoline Blending/Combustion Biofuels and Others. The study also offers a glimpse into market evolution through historic data covering the period 2004 through 2009.

For more details about this comprehensive market research report, please visit

About Global Industry Analysts, Inc.

Global Industry Analysts, Inc., (GIA) is a leading publisher of off-the-shelf market research. Founded in 1987, the company currently employs over 800 people worldwide. Annually, GIA publishes more than 1300 full-scale research reports and analyzes 40,000+ market and technology trends while monitoring more than 126,000 Companies worldwide. Serving over 9500 clients in 27 countries, GIA is recognized today, as one of the world’s largest and reputed market research firms.

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