Demand from Iron and Steel Industries to Influence Refractories Market Growth
Use of refractories in the iron and steel industries has been increasing since the past decade. Major use of refractories in this industry is their application in internal linings of the furnace to produce iron and steel. They are also used in furnaces during the steel heating process prior to further processing and in containers to hold and transport slag and metal. Furthermore, the production of iron and steel has been increasing at a stable rate since the past couple of years. For instance, according to World Steel Association, steel production on the global front increased by 3.7% in 2021 to touch 1950.5 metric tons as compared to the production in 2020 which was 1880.4 metric tons. This factor coupled with stable increase in the production of iron and steel is expected to bolster growth of the refractories market from the end-use industry standpoint.
In addition, the demand for steel in the automotive sector has witnessed a spike. According to the joint analysis of World Steel Association and International Organization of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers, steel based components account for around 60% of the vehicle structure. Additionally, automotive sector has been focused on enhancing vehicle performance and fuel consumption, which necessitates use of components that reduce vehicle weight. This triggered development of AHSS (Advanced High Strength Steel) that meets vehicle performance requirements. That said, demand for high-strength, lightweight steel in the automotive sector is expected to complement the production of steel, consequently influencing the refractories market growth.
Recycling of Refractories to Present Opportunistic Scenario for the Market
Adoption of refractory grogs has prevailed since the recent past. Refractory grogs are secondary raw material derived by recycling of used refractories. The quality of these secondary raw materials depends on the quality of the actual refractories based on which their usage is gauged. For instance, from refractories that were of high quality can deliver refractory grogs that can be utilised 100%. However, small percentage of refractory grogs derived from low quality refractories can be used in processes. The need of refractory products recycling has significantly increased. This is mainly owing to rising costs of raw materials and freight charges coupled with impending environmental pressures that have pushed companies to opt for sustainable alternatives for applications concerning refractoriness.
In addition, the refractory industry witnessed volatility in the past. This caused difficulties in procurement of raw material ultimately resulting in high costs. Moreover, on the back of environmental concerns, companies are focused on reducing their carbon footprint. Regulations on emissions and landfills have been enforced which have motivated companies to improve their waste recycling activities. In this backdrop, recycling of refractories can facilitate reduction in landfills this protecting environment health along with reduction in production costs owing to availability of cheaper raw material. This factor is expected to create potential opportunities for manufacturers and distributors of refractories in the coming years.
Bricks and Shaped Refractories Likely to Account for a Significant Revenue Share in the Market
Demand for bricks and shaped form of refractories is expected to witness momentum, in turn giving an impetus to value growth of the refractories market. This can be attributed towards their growing adoption in non-metal and metal industries. In addition, greater insulation provided by bricks has fuelled their application in the inside layers of kilns, and ovens. These are then replaced periodically in a bid to ensure the required insulation ratings demanded by the customer, which has further influenced their sales. In this background, increasing sales of bricks and shaped refractories is expected to complement the growth of the market on the global front.
Asia Pacific Likely to Emerge as an Optimistic Region for Refractories Market
Emerging economies in Asia Pacific are expected to showcase higher market attractiveness in the years to follow. This can be attributed towards rising construction activities in the region coupled with increasing production of iron and steel that need refractories during production processes. Moreover, emerging nations such as China, and India have been focusing on investing in commercial and residential buildings owing to rising industrialisation, and urbanisation. For instance, according to Global Construction Perspective and Oxford Economics, the construction sector worldwide will expand by 85% by 2030 with India, US and China accounting for about 57%. China is expected to gain higher share in the refractories market in wake of increasing construction output from the country. According to National Bureau of Statistics, construction output in China in 2021 was valued at around CNY 29.31 trillion. These factors remain instrumental in driving use of refractories in Asia Pacific, making it a lucrative go-to-region for companies.
Refractories Market: Competitive Scenario
A few of the major players in the refractories market include Saint-Gobain, Vesuvius, Korsaki Harima Corporation, SHINAGAWA Refractories Co. Ltd., RHI Magnesita GmbH, and Posco Chemical.
The Global Refractories Market is Segmented as Below:
By End Use Industry
Key Elements Included In The Study: Global Refractories Market
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