The report presents a comprehensive research of the global polyalkylene glycol market by product (polypropylene glycol and polyethylene glycol) and by application (PU foams, lubricants, personal care, and pharmaceuticals). The report also determines the geographic breakdown of the market in terms of detailed analysis and impact, which includes key geographies such as APAC, the Americas, and EMEA.
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Market driver: increasing demand for PU foams
The primary reason for the high demand of polyalkylene glycol is the increased use of PU foams as a material in automotive seating. Polyalkylene glycols superior properties is the reason it is used as an important material in the production of PU foams. PU foams are used in bed liners, boat floors and tire-covers, and instrumental panels. The automobile sector also uses PU foam solutions, as they offer shorter production time, reduced cost, higher quality, and emit lesser volatile organic compounds (VOC).
According to a senior analyst at Technavio for specialty chemicals research, “When PU foams are used in vehicles, they exhibit properties such as sustainable cushioning, shock absorption, and insulation, leading to its high demand. PU foams help achieve the required size of automotive seating as per the requirement, which reduces cost and waste. PU foams are recyclable and help in minimizing the environmental impact, which is another factor leading to its high demand. Such factors have further strengthened the global polyalkylene glycol market.”
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Market trend: growing popularity of bio-based glycols
The demand for bio-based glycols is expected to increase during the forecast period. The usage of non-perishable resources has increased as various governments are taking initiatives toward mitigating environmental concerns. During the production process of various petrochemicals, many initiatives have been taken toward the release of hazardous pollutants. Such initiatives are expected to fuel the demand for bio-based products, including bio-based glycols. Bio-based glycols are considered to be safe, eco-friendly, and compliant with stringent government regulations. The demand for it is expected to increase during the forecast period due to their extensive use in the pharmaceutical, cosmetic, and food industries.
Market challenge: volatility in the prices of petrochemicals
The two main classes of petrochemical raw materials that are extracted from refineries are propylene and ethylene. The prices of crude oil, propylene, and ethylene are inter-dependent. Owing to the varying demand of crude oil across the globe, the prices fluctuate and affect the price of propylene. Propylene is mainly produced by steam cracking and catalytic reforming processes and is used as a monomer in the production of polypropylene. Thus, any fluctuation in the prices of crude oil or petrochemicals will directly affect the price of polypropylene which will result in an impact on the supply of and demand for polyalkylene glycol products.
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