Vinyl chloride monomer is considered one of the most significant commodity chemicals available in the chemical industry. It is a colorless, flammable gas at room temperature. Vinyl chloride monomer is primarily used in the production of polyvinyl chloride, is employed mainly in the building & construction industry.
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Vinyl chloride monomer is produced commercially by combining hydrocarbon feedstock, which is obtained by cracking natural gas or petroleum, with elemental chlorine. It is generally stored as a liquid under pressure and evaporates readily at ambient temperature. Vinyl chloride monomer gets polymerized if it is exposed to elevated temperatures. It is used in the production of ethylene diamine and chlorinated solvents.
The vinyl chloride monomer market is primarily driven by the increase in demand from the building & construction industry. Vinyl chloride monomer is used in siding, roofing, water distribution, wire and cable insulation, window frames, etc. in the building & construction industry. Industrial processes such as landfill liners, piping used in food processing, and chemical processing are also driving the market for vinyl chloride monomer. Advancements in medical technologies and emergence of advanced medical devices are also propelling the global vinyl chloride monomer market, as vinyl chloride monomer is majorly used in the production of blood and intravenous bags, kidney dialysis, blood transfusion, cardiac catheters, and artificial heart valves. Rise in demand for vinyl chloride monomer in the automotive industry is also augmenting the global vinyl chloride monomer market. Global environmental concerns such as carbon emission and global warming along with health related issues are likely to hamper the vinyl chloride monomer market in the near future. However, this trend is likely to change due to the advancements in the production of bio-based vinyl chloride monomer.
In terms of raw material, the global vinyl chloride monomer market can be segmented into ethylene, chlorine, and oxygen. Based on application, the vinyl chloride monomer market can be divided into building & construction, healthcare, agriculture, and electrical.
The global vinyl chloride monomer market witnessed modest expansion in 2016. This trend is estimated to continue during the forecast period. Asia Pacific is expected to account for significant share of the global vinyl chloride monomer with major contribution from China. This high demand can be ascribed to the easy availability of raw materials and increase in urbanization. Expansion in the building & construction industry in Asia Pacific is estimated to propel the market for vinyl chloride monomer. North America maintains a low production cost position in chlorine and ethylene raw materials. This is likely to boost the share of North America in the global vinyl chloride monomer market. The shift toward lower natural gas and feedstock costs for the vinyl chain in the U.S. and Canada, via shale gas, is solidifying North America’s position as one of the world’s lowest cost vinyl chloride monomer producers. Technological advancements in medical and electrical sectors in Europe are expected to fuel the vinyl chloride monomer market in the region. The vinyl chloride monomer market in Latin America is anticipated to provide lucrative opportunities with the entry of manufacturers in the region. Strong growth in the oil & gas sector in Middle East & Africa is estimated to propel the vinyl chloride monomer market in the region.
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Key players operating in the vinyl chloride monomer market include Bayer AG, Mexichem, Nova Chemical, and Chemson Group.