The global nitric acid market is poised for significant growth, driven by rapid population growth and its impact on various industries. Nitric acid, a versatile compound, finds wide use in fertilizers, explosives, adhesive production, medicinal applications, metal cleaning, paint production, etching, drug discovery, furniture coating and laboratory research. With patents being regularly developed to discover new uses for nitric acid, its applications continue to hold promising growth.
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- Nitric acid: Properties and applications
- Growing demand from the fertilizer industry
- Global Fertilizer Demand and Nitric Acid Market
- The role of nitric acid in improving food quality
- Garbage: Fastest growing segment
- Fertilizers based on nitrogen and nitric acid
- Asia Pacific Nitric Acid Market
- Increasing agricultural production in Asia Pacific
- Fertilizer production in India and wheat production
- Application of nitric acid in the textile industry
- Competitive landscape of the global nitric acid market
- LSB Industries, Inc.: New Supply Contract
- KBR and Haifa Group: Increased production capacity
- Major Players in Nitric Acid Market
- Frequently asked questions
The rapid growth of the global population is set to drive the expansion of the nitric acid market. Nitric acid, characterized as a conjugate acid of a nitrate, has remarkable properties such as high solubility in water, strong oxidizing abilities and good electrical conductivity. Its versatile nature has led to its widespread presence across multiple industries and processes, with new patents constantly being developed to explore innovative applications.
Nitric acid: Properties and applications
Nitric acid plays a crucial role in various industries, ranging from fertilizers to explosives, adhesives to medical applications, and metal cleaning to paint production. It is also used in engraving, drug discovery, furniture coating and laboratory use. In addition, nitric acid serves as a component of liquid rocket fuel and plays a vital role in the production of plastics. It finds application as a cleaning product in food processing facilities, ensuring high hygienic standards.
Growing demand from the fertilizer industry
The increasing demand for nitric acid can be attributed to the increasing need by fertilizer formulators and the increasing use of fertilizers in rural economies worldwide. According to the US Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), global fertilizer demand is forecast to reach 197.93 million tons in 2021, with nitrogen-based fertilizers showing a 1.4% year-on-year growth rate in the same year. The increasing global demand for food has necessitated the adoption of various fertilizers and agricultural practices to increase crop production, reduce cultivation time and ensure healthy crop growth. Nitric acid plays a crucial role in the production of nitrogenous fertilizers, thereby contributing to the promising growth prospect for the nitric acid market.
Global Fertilizer Demand and Nitric Acid Market
Fertilizers are expected to be the fastest growing segment of the nitric acid market during the forecast period. The significant growth is mainly driven by the growing demand for food, leading to the global expansion of composting units. Farmers around the world are using more and more fertilizers to maximize crop yields in the shortest possible time. Nitric acid is widely used in the manufacture of fertilizers, including ammonium nitrate and calcium ammonium nitrate. As the demand for arable land increases to meet the growing global demand for food, the need for fertilizers increases accordingly. This upward trend in fertilizer demand is expected to drive the worldwide fertilizer industry, with an anticipated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of approximately 5% during the forecast period.
The role of nitric acid in improving food quality
To ensure improved food quality, the use of fertilizers has become essential. Fertilizers provide essential nutrients to plants, enabling them to develop and grow at an accelerated rate. Nitric acid, with its prominent role in fertilizer production, plays an important role in increasing crop productivity. Ammonium nitrate, a popular nitrogen-based fertilizer, contains approximately 35% total nitrogen by mass. In addition, calcium-ammonium nitrate (CAN) fertilizers, which contain 25-28% nitrogen, are widely used to provide the nitrogen necessary for optimal plant development. The hygroscopic nature of calcium ammonium nitrate allows it to retain moisture from the air, making it suitable for soil application even in water-scarce conditions.
Asia Pacific Nitric Acid Market
The Asia Pacific region is poised to dominate the nitric acid market in terms of production. As the world’s population and wealth continue to expand, the demand for agricultural commodities increases accordingly. Nations such as India, China and Pakistan have witnessed significant growth in the production of wheat, maize, cotton and potatoes, driving the demand for nitric acid mainly in the fertilizer sector. Asia Pacific countries, especially China, India and South Korea, lead in both production and consumption of fertilizers. According to the ITC trade map, South Korea emerged as the largest exporter of nitric acid in 2021, with 534.2 thousand tons exported, while China stood as the second largest importer in 2020, with 152.8 thousand tons imported for various end-user industries such as such as fertilizers, paints, pigments and dyes, and chemical production.
Fertilizer production in India and wheat production
India, an important market in the Asia Pacific region, has witnessed steady growth in fertilizer production. According to the Fertilizer Association of India, the total production of fertilizer products in India reached 43.49 million MT in 2020-21, showing an increase of 1.7% compared to the previous year. Production of nitrogen-based fertilizers also saw a slight increase of 0.2%, reaching 13.74 million MT in 2020-2021. Wheat production in the country witnessed a 2% increase in 2021, with a total production of 682.9 million tons compared to 650 million tons a year earlier. Corn acreage increased by 5%, while production increased by 4.6% compared to a year ago. The use of fertilizers to increase productivity and compensate for shrinking cultivated land is expected to boost the market in the country. Nitric acid finds applications in various sectors, including the textile industry, where it serves as a raw material for paints, pigments and dyes. According to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, China’s textile industry experienced rapid growth in the first nine months of 2021, with profits of 171.1 billion yuan (approximately $26.80 billion), representing a year-on-year increase of 31.7%. .
Competitive landscape of the global nitric acid market
The global nitric acid market features several key players vying for market share and looking to improve their operations. In October 2020, LSB Industries, Inc. signed a new long-term nitric acid supply contract, aiming to improve profitability through focused marketing efforts and product mix adjustments. Another notable development in July 2020 involves KBR’s collaboration with Haifa Group to increase the production capacity of two nitric acid plants in Israel. This collaboration aims to increase production capacity while reducing plant emissions and operating costs.
Major Players in Nitric Acid Market
The global nitric acid market is supported by a number of industry players. Some of the major players operating in the market include:
- The Chemours Company
- Dyno Nobel
- National Chemical Group
- Koch Garbage
- Nitrogen OCI
- Potash Corp
- Eurochem Group
- CF Industries
- LSB Industries
- Agrium Inc.
These companies play an important role in driving innovation, meeting market demand and contributing to the overall growth of the nitric acid market.
The rapidly increasing global population is expected to drive the growth of the nitric acid market. Nitric acid’s versatile nature and wide range of applications in various industries position it for promising growth opportunities. Demand for nitric acid is particularly driven by the fertilizer industry, which aims to increase crop productivity to meet the growing global demand for food. Moreover, the Asia Pacific region, with increasing agricultural production and significant consumption of fertilizers, is poised to be a key market for nitric acid. As the market expands, industry players actively engage in strategic initiatives to optimize production capacity and improve operational efficiency.
Frequently asked questions:
- Q: What are the main applications of nitric acid? A: Nitric acid finds applications in fertilizers, explosives, adhesive production, medicinal applications, metal cleaning, paint production, etching, drug discovery, furniture coating, and laboratory research.
- Q: How is the growing population impacting the nitric acid market? Answer: Population growth drives the demand for fertilizers and agricultural commodities, which, in turn, drives the growth of the nitric acid market.
- Question: What is the role of nitric acid in fertilizer production? Answer: Nitric acid is a key component in the production of nitrogen-based fertilizers such as ammonium nitrate and calcium ammonium nitrate.
- Q: Which region is expected to lead the nitric acid market? Answer: The Asia Pacific region, with its growing agricultural production and consumption of fertilizers, is likely to dominate the nitric acid market.
- Q: Who are the key players in the nitric acid market? Answer: Some of the key players in the nitric acid market include The Chemours Company, Dyno Nobel, National Chemical Group, KBR, Koch Fertilizers, OCI Nitrogen, Potash Corp, Eurochem Group, CF Industries, LSB Industries and Agrium Inc.
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