Chemical sales have been forecast to grow by 3% every year till 2050 by the United Nations. Moreover, the 2012 Global Chemicals Outlook report published by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) says, “The exact number of chemicals on the global market is not known but under the pre-registration requirement of the European Union’s chemicals regulation, REACH, 143,835 chemical substances have been pre-registered.” This clearly shows how vast the chemical industry is and why; chemicals, natural or synthetic, are required for manufacturing almost everything from processed foods to complex machines.
As a result of the growing chemical industry, P&S Intelligence has forecast significant expansion in the chlorobenzene industry in the years to come. This is because this chemical is widely used as an intermediate in the production of other specialty chemicals, including insecticides and pesticides, organic chemicals, di-isocyanate, paints, adhesives, coatings, waxes, and the pigments that are consumed during the manufacturing of di-phenyl oxide and nitrobenzene. Other key applications of chlorobenzene include pharmaceuticals and the degreasing of automobile body parts. Moreover, the chemical is used as a fiber swelling agent in the textile sector and during dry cleaning.
These applications require the chemical in various forms, such as paradichlorobenzene, monochlorobenzene, m-dichlorobenzene, orthodichlorobenzene, tetrachlorobenzene, trichlorobenzene, and hexachlorobenzene. Among these, monochlorobenzene is the most-widely consumed form of the base chemical, on account of the high demand for nitrochlorobenzene and diphenyl oxide, which are themselves used to manufacture pigment and organic intermediates, dyes, pesticides, rubber processing chemicals, and pharmaceuticals. In the coming years, the consumption of paradichlorobenzene will rise the fastest, as it is used as a repellent and fumigant insecticide and in the production of specialty mothballs, deodorant blocks for toilets and restrooms, and poly (p-phenylene sulfone).
With urbanization, the demand for various basic, intermediate, advanced, and specialty chemicals is rising around the world, especially in developing countries. Thus, the government of China, India, Japan, and Bangladesh, among other emerging economies, are taking initiatives to augment their chemical production. For instance, heavy investments are being poured into the manufacturing sector as part of the Make in India and Made in China initiatives. Moreover, Asian countries offer cost-effective raw material and labor and also have less-stringent environmental regulations, which are encouraging North American and European chemical companies to establish their plants here.
This is why Asia-Pacific has been the dominating region in the chlorobenzene market till now, and it will also witness the highest growth rate in the years to come. Additionally, with the growing agricultural sector, the demand for agrochemicals is rising, which is driving the consumption of chlorobenzenes. Another emerging application area of these chemicals in the region is pharmaceuticals, the production of which is growing to cater to the increasing disease-ridden population. For instance, as per the India Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF), India exported $16.3-billion worth of pharma products in FY2020, and its overall pharmaceutical industry is set to touch $100 billion in 2025.
Here, trichlorobenzene, for example, is used to synthesize various intermediates that are themselves used as ingredients in vitamins, antibiotic drugs, and other medications. Similarly, polysulfone polymer, a kind of thermoplastic produced from chlorobenzenes, displays biocompatibility and the ability to be sterilized, which makes it popular in several medical applications. With the population of APAC rising at a high rate, the incidence of various diseases and disorders is increasing. This is leading to the surging demand for drugs, as well as the escalating hospitalization rate, which are propelling the demand for chlorobenzene.
Thus, the growth in end-use industries will continue to result in the increasing consumption of chlorobenzenes.