Coal Tar and Coal Tar Pitch Market Outlook
The global coal tar and coal tar pitch market size was valued at USD 5,687.1 Mn in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 6,231.1 Mn by 2027, expanding at a CAGR of 4.8% during the forecast period, 2020-2027. In terms of volume, the market is expected to expand at a CAGR of 3.3% during the forecast period. Coal tar is derived from coal and is also referred to as crude tar. It is a mixture of hydrocarbons and is produced by the process called pyrolysis of coal.
It is a byproduct of the production of coke. Coal tar pitch is solid at room temperature. Coal tar pitch is a viscous black residue that is left after heat treatment or distillation of coal tar. It has a wide softening range rather than a defined melting temperature. Both coal tar and coal tar pitch are carbon precursors essential for scientific research for the development of new carbon materials as well as for carbon industries.
Coal Tar and Coal Tar Pitch Market Dynamics
The market growth is attributed to the factors such as the increasing use of coal tar pitch for aluminum smelting, growing applications of coal tar pitch in the coatings & paint industry, and rising use of coal tar pitch for the manufacturing of graphite electrodes, as well as in healthcare industry.
Aluminum is produced with the help of anodes in the aluminum smelter. Key components of anodes are petroleum coke and coal tar pitch. The aluminum industry uses carbon pitch for binding purposes in the production of carbon anodes for aluminum smelters. Aluminum smelting is used to extract aluminum from alumina and its oxides. Coal tar pitch is a key raw material for binding carbon anodes during aluminum production. Increasing global aluminum production is expected to drive the market in the projected years.
According to the survey by The Aluminum Association, Inc., the estimated annual rate of primary aluminum production was 1,132.3 thousand metric tons (kmt) in the US in March 2020. Additionally, according to the India Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF), the combined aluminum production in India stood at 3.6 million Tons (MT) in 2020. India is the third largest producer of coal with a production of 729.10 million Tons (MT) in 2020. These factors are expected to increase the demand for coal tar pitch in the aluminum industry during the forecast period.
Additionally, according to the USGS (U.S. Geological Survey) Mineral Commodity Statistics, in 2019, aluminum smelter production in China and Russia stood at 36,000 thousand metric Tons and 3,600 thousand metric tons respectively. Moreover, the worldwide production capacity for smelter production is estimated to be around 77,900 thousand metric Tons in 2019. Thus, the above-mentioned factors are driving the demand for coal tar pitch across the globe.
Coal tar belongs to a class of drugs called keratoplastics. It is used for the treatment of skin conditions including eczema, psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis, and other skin disorders. Coal tar is only available with a doctor's prescription for some of these medical conditions.
However, it is purchased over the counter in shampoos, lotions, creams, or foam for use in various applications. It functions by causing the skin's top layer to shed dead cells, thereby, slowing the growth of cells in the skin. As a result, the dryness and scaling of the skin are reduced. Coal tar decreases itchiness in skin conditions. Thus, the demand for coal tar from the healthcare industry is expected to increase in the forthcoming years.
Moreover, the increasing focus of manufacturers on providing coal tar in various forms such as shampoo, foam, ointment, liquid, solution, lotion, and gel/jelly is expected to attract a large customer base across the world. For instance, Lake Consumer Products, Inc. (a US-based company) manufactures and distributes a ‘Non-Drying Multi-Symptom Coal Tar Gel’ that helps to relieve itching, scaling, and redness, thereby reducing inflammation and irritation.
However, side effects associated with coal tar exposure is expected to hinder the market growth during the forecast period. Coal tar pitch volatiles (CTPVs) are generated when coal tar or coal tar pitch is heated. When workers are exposed to these airborne CTPVs, it has a negative impact on their health. According to the National Cancer Institute, work-related exposure to coal tar or coal tar pitch increases the threat of skin cancer.
Moreover, several other types of cancer such as digestive tract, bladder, lung, and kidney cancers are linked to exposure to coal tar pitch. Additional health effects associated with short-term exposure to coal tar pitch include eye & respiratory tract irritation, convulsions, and severe burns. Such health hazards associated with exposure of coal tar during the production process hamper the market.
Coal Tar and Coal Tar Pitch Market Segmental Outlook
Based on product type, the global coal tar and coal tar pitch market is segmented into coal tar (50-65% pitch content), partially distilled tar (65-99% pitch content), and pure pitch (100% pitch content). The coal tar (50-65% pitch content) segment held a considerable share of the market in 2019 and is anticipated to expand at a significant CAGR during the forecast period.
The large share of the coal tar (50-65% pitch content) segment is attributed to the increasing production of aluminum across the globe. For instance, according to the US Geological Survey’s 2020 report on aluminum, countries such as China, Russia, India, Canada, UAE, and Australia are considered as the top aluminum-producing countries worldwide. These countries are expected to significantly contribute to the segmental growth during the forecast period.
On the basis of grade, the global coal tar and coal tar pitch market is segmented as binder grade and impregnation grade. The binder grade segment held the largest share of the market in 2019 and is anticipated to expand at a higher CAGR during the forecast period. The large share of the binder grade segment is attributed to the increasing need of binder grade of coal tar pitch for aluminum and steel industries. Moreover, the high quinoline insoluble content in this grade as compared to the impregnation grade is expected to drive the segment in the upcoming years.
In terms of application, the global coal tar and coal tar pitch market is segmented into chemicals, pharmaceuticals, consumer goods, construction & roofing, and others. The construction & roofing segment is projected to expand at a highest CAGR during the forecast period. The growth is attributed to the waterproofing nature of the coal tar and its self-healing properties that repair small deformities created by surface punctures. Additionally, the long-lasting properties of coal tar are expected to increase its use in construction and roofing activities during the forecast period.
Based on regions, the global coal tar and coal tar pitch market is segmented as North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa. Asia Pacific accounted for a significant market share in 2019 and is expected to expand at the highest CAGR during the forecast period, 2020-2027. Large market share of Asia Pacific is attributed to the strong presence of countries producing primary aluminum in the region.
For instance, according to the statistics from the Government of Canada, in 2019, the production of primary aluminum in China, India, and Australia stood at 36,000, 3,700, and 1,600 thousand tonnes. Primary aluminum production in these countries accounted for around 64% of the total primary aluminum production worldwide. Coal tar pitch is a key raw material used in the production of aluminum; hence its demand is expected to increase in this region during the forecast period.
Key Benefits for Industry Participants & Stakeholders
- In-depth Analysis of the Global Coal Tar and Coal Tar Pitch Market
- Historical, Current, and Projected Market Size in terms of Value and Volume
- Potential & Niche Segments and Regions Exhibiting Promising Growth Covered
- Industry Drivers, Restraints and Opportunities Covered in the Study
- Recent Industry Trends and Developments
- Competitive Landscape & Strategies of Key Players
- Neutral Perspective on Global Coal Tar and Coal Tar Pitch Market Performance
- Coal Tar (50-65% Pitch Content)
- Partially Distilled Tar (65-99% Pitch Content)
- Pure Pitch (100% Pitch Content)
- Binder Grade
- Impregnation Grade
- Consumer Goods
- Construction & Roofing
- North America
- Rest of the Europe
- Asia Pacific
- South Korea
- Rest of Asia Pacific
- Latin America
- Rest of Latin America
- Middle East & Africa
- Saudi Arabia
- South Africa
- Rest of Middle East & Africa
Key Market Players Profiled in the Report
- C-Chem CO.,Ltd.
- Coopers Creek
- Bilbaína de Alquitranes, S.A.
- Nagreeka Group (Hydrocarbons)
- Himadri Speciality Chemical Ltd
- Rain Industries Limited (Rain Carbon Inc)
- Industrial Química
- Crowley Chemical Company
Key players in the market include Rain Industries Limited (Rain Carbon Inc.), Himadri Speciality Chemical Ltd, Koppers, C-Chem CO.,Ltd., and Bilbaína de Alquitranes, S.A. These companies are considered as key manufacturers of coal tar and coal tar pitch based on their revenue, research & development (R&D) activities, and regional presence. The players are adopting key strategies such as merger, acquisition, and geographical expansion in order to strengthen their market position.
- C-Chem Co., Ltd, and Fangda Carbon New Material Co., entered into a conclusive agreement to with Ltd. Koppers Holdings Inc. (NYSE: KOP) to buy Koppers (Jiangsu) Carbon Chemical Company Limited (KJCC), to in order to focus on its portfolio. KJCC is a tar distillation facility situated in Pizhou City, China.