Formaldehyde is a major constituent for urea-alkyd resins production, having a wide range of end-users from industries including automobile, plywood, construction, buildings, furniture, paints & coatings, textiles, fertilizers & pesticides and packaging sectors. The global market is estimated to grow moderately over the forecast period.
The product is used mainly for manufacturing of amino resins such as melamine-formaldehyde, urea-melamine-formaldehyde and urea-formaldehyde resins. Apart from being cheaper than conventional adhesives, theses resins possess phenomenal moisture resistance and adhesive strength. Commercially, formaldehyde is functioned as formalin, in liquid form, which widely used as embalming agent and disinfectants.
Formaldehyde is anticipated to be emerging market owing to growing end use applications in various sector such as infrastructure and construction especially in developing nations. One of the major drivers for the market is usage of formaldehyde for fuel production, as it is a cheaper alternative to oil. The increasing demand for medium density fiberboards, laminates, particle boards, automotive parts are anticipated to drive the market.
Increased production of laminates and wood-based panels are increasing the demand of formaldehyde, thus, boosting the market over the forecast period.
However, growing concerns regarding health and safety of health and environment are anticipated to hamper the market. Apart from monitoring health and safety, fluctuation in raw material prices are also expected to restrain the market.
U.S. EPA has issued strict recommendations for workforce safety to avoid potential disorders of nose, lungs, skins, cancer and even the reproductive system. Also, under Biocidal Products Directive, formaldehyde is banned for certain applications such as for use as preservatives for processing & liquid-cooling systems, and anti-fouling products.
Major formaldehyde market applications include UF resins, MF resins, PF resins, pentaerythritol, 1, 4-butanediol, methylenebis, and polyacetal resins. PF resins are fire and water resistant and extensively used in oil, automotive and construction industry such as binders, composites, and insulation foams. Hence, PF resins are anticipated to dominate the market owing to its high demand and consumption rates.
Phenolic PF resins, fire resistant in nature, are used widely in construction and automobile industries. Water resistant variants are also used as durable binders and adhesives. Growing UF resins demand is anticipated to drive the global market owing to its chemical, flame & arc resistant, also color retention properties.
Formaldehyde coatings are used to enhance durability and aesthetics of wooden material and furniture. It is majorly used in wood and coating industry owing to its outstanding properties such as heat & chemical resistance, hardness suitable to manufacture serving trays and wiring devices.
End User Insights:
Construction industry dominated the market in 2015. Automotive, healthcare, aerospace, and clothing are another major end user segment. Construction industry includes the production of cabinet doors, medium density fiberboards, laminator countertops and insulation, which requires resin as their crucial raw material. These resins are also used for long-lasting furniture manufacturing and are cost effective as compared to wood.
Formaldehyde market demand is anticipated to drive automobile market owing to its manufacturing of door panels, axles, brake shoes, electrical systems, engine blocks, and transmission.
North American market has shown moderate growth in various segments. Asia-Pacific countries such as India, China, and Japan are expected to grow significantly owing to its rapidly developing plastic, automotive and constructional market. Other regions of Europe and Latin America also been anticipated to witness steady growth rate. China was the largest formaldehyde market globally.
The global market players for formaldehyde market are BASF SE, Huntsman Corporation, Momentive Specialty Chemical Inc., Celanese Corporation, Georgia-Pacific Corporation, Perstorp Formox AB, Bayer AG and Dynea Oy.
Global Formaldehyde Application Outlook (Volume, Kilo tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2012 - 2020)
• UF Resins
• PF Resins
• MF Resins
• Polyacetal Resins
• Methylenebis (4-phenyl isocyanate) (MDI)
Global Formaldehyde End Use Outlook (Volume, Kilo tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2012 - 2020)
• Others (automotive, aircraft, healthcare, clothing)
Formaldehyde Regional Outlook (Volume, Kilo tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2012 - 2020)
• North America
• Asia Pacific
Research Support Specialist, USA