Published October 2014
Overall, water management is the largest use for acrylamide globally. It accounts for about 35–40% of global acrylamide consumption. This is followed by the oil and gas sector, which includes use in enhanced oil recovery (EOR) (26%) and other uses in petroleum production such as hydraulic fracturing. Acrylamide use in pulp and paper manufacture also accounts for a share of the market at about 16–18% of global consumption. Water management is the leading segment in the United States and Western Europe, while paper uses dominate the Japanese market. EOR will continue to be the largest segment in the Chinese market, followed by water treatment. The following pie chart shows world consumption of acrylamide:
China accounts for 46% of global acrylamide consumption in 2014 and will continue to be the leading acrylamide consumer during the forecast period. The fastest growth will occur in the water treatment industry as strict environmental standards are implemented and sewage treatment increases. China also has increasing enhanced oil recovery needs resulting in increasing consumption of acrylamide in its oil fields.
The U.S. acrylamide market (accounting for 18% of the world total) will experience strong growth in petroleum processes such as fracking and in EOR (from a smaller base) and steady growth in water management uses as a result of environmental regulations. Acrylamide consumption will also grow in mining processes, but use in paper is expected to have limited growth.
Western Europe accounts for 17% of global acrylamide consumption. The majority of this use is in water treatment, which is expected to have moderate growth. Acrylamide demand in petroleum production will increase greatly, but from a small base. Acrylamide use in the paper and mining sectors is expected to decline in this region.
In Other Asia, only moderate growth is expected; most polyacrylamide in this region is used for water treatment and paper production.
Japanese consumption of acrylamide accounts for about 6% of the world total; the pulp and paper market accounts for the largest share of Japanese consumption, followed by water treatment. No growth is expected in the paper segment, while only very slight growth is anticipated in the water management industry. Only a negligible amount of oil is produced; thus there is only negligible use in oil and gas markets.
In Central and South America, acrylamide consumption is mainly for water treatment, mineral processing, paper and other uses. Relatively strong growth is expected in this region, although the oil and gas sector has been slower to develop. Both Canada and Mexico have small acrylamide consumption levels with limited growth.
The acrylamide business is global, as manufacturers locate world-scale production facilities closer to the sites of consumption and exploit lower-cost production locations and process efficiencies through new technology.