Cumene Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2022 - 2027)

The market is segmented by Catalyst Type (Aluminum Chloride Catalyst, Solid Phosphoric Acid (SPA) Catalyst, Zeolite Catalyst, and Other Catalyst Types), Application (Phenol, Acetone, and Other Applications), and Geography (Asia-Pacific, North America, Europe, South America, and Middle-East and Africa). The report offers market size and forecasts for Cumene in volume (kilo tons) for all the above segments.

Market Snapshot

Cumene Market - Market Summary
Study Period: 2016 - 2026
Base Year: 2021
Fastest Growing Market: Asia Pacific
Largest Market: Asia Pacific
CAGR: 4.88 %

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Market Overview

The Global Cumene Market was valued at 15,066.67 kilotons in 2020 and is expected to grow with a CAGR of 4.88% during the forecast period ( 2021-2026).

The sudden onset of the global pandemic COVID-19 has caused demand for Cumene to decline in the international market, leading to low demand for Phenol and Acetone derivatives of Cumene. The phenol market industry across the globe witnessed a growth rate of only 4% in 2020 owing to the suspension of industrial activities. The demand for phenol decreased due to the higher impact of COVID-19 at the industry level, a regional level, and subsequent supply chain operations. Thus, the demand for cumene contracted in 2020. Moreover, the COVID-19 pandemic started to affect the major end-user industries of cumene, such as cosmetics and personal care, paints and enamels, high-octane aviation fuels, polymer industries, the decline in sales due to the pandemic effect weakened the demand for cumene for a long period of time. However, the demand for Cumene is expected to recover in the coming years, as various end-user industries, such as construction and others, which consume cumene and its derivative-based products, are picking the pace.

  • In the medium term, increasing demand for phenol from the plastic industry and increasing use of acetone as a solvent are likely to drive the market's growth.
  • On the flip side, harmful effect due to extended exposure and unfavorable conditions arising due to the COVID-19 outbreak are expected to significantly hinder the growth of the market studied.
  • Asia-Pacific is expected to dominate the global market during the forecast period. Also, it is expected to register the highest CAGR during the forecast period.

Scope of the Report

Cumene is an aliphatic-substituted aromatic hydrocarbon. Crude oil and refined fuels all contain it. It is a colorless, flammable liquid with a boiling point of 152°C. The cumene market is segmented by catalyst type, application, and geography. By catalyst type, the market is segmented into Aluminum Chloride Catalyst, Solid Phosphoric Acid (SPA) Catalyst, Zeolite Catalyst, and Other Catalyst Types. By application, the market is segmented into Phenol, Acetone, and Other Applications. The report also covers the market size and forecast for the cumene market in 15 countries across major regions. For each segment, the market sizing and forecast have been done on the basis of volume (kilo tons).

Catalyst Type
Aluminum Chloride Catalyst
Solid Phosphoric Acid (SPA) Catalyst
Zeolite Catalyst
Other Catalyst Types
Other Applications (Includes paints, enamels, aviation fuels, and others)
South Korea
Rest of Asia-Pacific
North America
United States
United Kingdom
Rest of Europe
South America
Rest of South America
Middle-East and Africa
Saudi Arabia
South Africa
Rest of Middle-East and Africa

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Key Market Trends

Increasing Demand from Phenol Segment

  • One of the major applications of cumene is in the production of phenol. The liquid-phase oxidation of cumene with molecular oxygen forms cumene hydroperoxide, which is further decomposed with the use of a catalyst into phenol and acetone.
  • The oxidation process requires the use of purified cumene. The catalyst used for the decomposition of cumene hydroperoxide into phenol and acetone is Sulphuric Acid. 
  • Phenol plays a major role in many industries. Some of the common applications of phenol include Plywood, window glazing, DVDs and CDs, computers, sports equipment, fiberglass boats, automotive parts and accessories, circuit boards, and flat-panel televisions.
  • The largest single market for phenol is in the production of Bisphenol A (BPA), which is manufactured from phenol and acetone. BPA, in turn, is used in the manufacturing of polycarbonate and epoxy resins. 
  • Both polycarbonate and epoxy resins are used in many different industries, which makes phenol a major component or application of the cumene market.
  • Phenol is also a major component in phenolic adhesives used in wood products such as plywood and oriented strand board. It is also used to produce phenolic resins used in the molding of heat-resistant components for household appliances, counter-top and flooring laminates, and foundry castings.
  • In addition, it is a valuable intermediate in the production of detergents, agricultural chemicals, medicines, plasticizers, and dyes.
  • The production stats of phenol have been volatile in the past, which is now reaching a steady figure in the recent years. The production of phenol in the United States in 2019 stood at 1115,000 metric tons. 
  • The phenol production in India has also witnessed some decline. According to DCP India, the phenol production in FY 2020 stood at 57.85 thousand metric tons, while that in 2019 stood at 65.39 thousand metric tons.
  • Majority of cumene is used in phenol production, which in turn is used in a variety of applications, thus making phenol an important application of cumene.
  • Therefore, all the aforementioned factors from phenol segment is likely to significantly impact the demand for the market studied.
Cumene Market - Segmentation

China to Dominate the Asia-Pacific Market

  • Small amounts of cumene are also used as thinners for paints, lacquers, and enamels, and as solvents in paints and other types of coatings.
  • China accounts for more than one-fourth of the global coatings market presently. According to the China National Coatings Industry Association, the industry has been registering a growth of 7% through recent years. It was estimated that from 2019, the construction of at least ten large coatings investment projects in China had been reported publicly. Nippon has been tapping into this market situation by upgrading its coatings production process in its new plants in China. ​
  • In May 2021, PPG announced the completion of its USD 13 million investment in its Jiading, China paint and coatings facility, including eight new powder coating production lines and an expanded powder coatings technology center that is expected to enhance PPG’s research and development capabilities. The expansion is likely to increase the plant’s capacity by more than 8,000 metric tons per year.
  • Cumene is also used as a gasoline blend for providing high octane aviation fuel, which is being used in the jet and commercial aircrafts. 
  • The International Energy Agency (IEA) in March forecast China's demand for gasoline, jet fuel, and diesel would rise by 6.5% to 8.2 million bpd in 2021.
  • Additionally, according to the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), China is one of the largest markets for domestic air passengers. The civil aircraft fleet in the country has been increasing steadily for the last five years. ​
  • According to Boeing Commercial Market Outlook, the deliveries of commercial airplanes in the country will be around 8700 by the year 2040, which is likely to increase the consumption of jet fuels in the country.
  • Moreover, the Chinese airline companies are planning to purchase about 7,690 new aircraft in the next 20 years, valued at approximately USD 1.2 trillion, which is further expected to rise the market demand for cumene in gasoline blend for aviation fuel in the country.​​
  • The aforementioned factors are likely to increase the demand for cumene in China during the forecast period.
Cumene Market - Regional Trend

Competitive Landscape

The global cumene market stands to be fragmented in nature, with cut-throat competition among the market players to increase their share in the studied market. Some of the key players in the market include Cepsa, INEOS, KUMHO P&B CHEMICALS.,INC., Dow, and KOCH Industries Inc., among others.

Recent Developments

  • In October 2019, INEOS announced that it breaks ground at its world-scale cumene investment at Marl, Germany. The plant has a capacity of 750,000 metric tons per year of cumene, which was expected to be completed in 2021.

Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Drivers

      1. 4.1.1 Increasing Demand for Phenol from the Plastic Industry

      2. 4.1.2 Increasing Use of Acetone as a Solvent

    2. 4.2 Restraints

      1. 4.2.1 Harmful Effects Due to Extended Exposure

      2. 4.2.2 Unfavorable Conditions Arising Due to the COVID-19 Outbreak​

    3. 4.3 Industry Value Chain Analysis

    4. 4.4 Porter's Five Forces Analysis

      1. 4.4.1 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      2. 4.4.2 Bargaining Power of Consumers

      3. 4.4.3 Threat of New Entrants

      4. 4.4.4 Threat of Substitute Products and Services

      5. 4.4.5 Degree of Competition

    5. 4.5 Feedstock Analysis​

    6. 4.6 Technological Snapshot

    7. 4.7 Trade Analysis

    8. 4.8 Price Trends

    9. 4.9 Regulatory Policy Analysis


    1. 5.1 Catalyst Type

      1. 5.1.1 Aluminum Chloride Catalyst

      2. 5.1.2 Solid Phosphoric Acid (SPA) Catalyst

      3. 5.1.3 Zeolite Catalyst

      4. 5.1.4 Other Catalyst Types

    2. 5.2 Application

      1. 5.2.1 Phenol

      2. 5.2.2 Acetone

      3. 5.2.3 Other Applications (Includes paints, enamels, aviation fuels, and others)

    3. 5.3 Geography

      1. 5.3.1 Asia-Pacific

        1. China

        2. India

        3. Japan

        4. South Korea

        5. Rest of Asia-Pacific

      2. 5.3.2 North America

        1. United States

        2. Canada

        3. Mexico

      3. 5.3.3 Europe

        1. Germany

        2. France

        3. United Kingdom

        4. Italy

        5. Rest of Europe

      4. 5.3.4 South America

        1. Brazil

        2. Argentina

        3. Rest of South America

      5. 5.3.5 Middle-East and Africa

        1. Saudi Arabia

        2. South Africa

        3. Rest of Middle-East and Africa


    1. 6.1 Mergers and Acquisitions, Joint Ventures, Collaborations, and Agreements

    2. 6.2 Market Share Analysis

    3. 6.3 Strategies Adopted by Leading Players

    4. 6.4 Company Profiles

      1. 6.4.1 Braskem

      2. 6.4.2 Cepsa

      3. 6.4.3 Chang Chun Group

      4. 6.4.4 CITGO

      5. 6.4.5 Domo Chemicals

      6. 6.4.6 Dow

      7. 6.4.7 INEOS

      8. 6.4.8 Koch Industries Inc.

      9. 6.4.9 Kumho P&B Chemicals Inc.

      10. 6.4.10 Prasol Chemicals Pvt Ltd

      11. 6.4.11 Royal Dutch Shell PLC

      12. 6.4.12 SABIC

      13. 6.4.13 Versalis Spa

    5. *List Not Exhaustive

    1. 7.1 Rising Investments and Applications of Bisphenol A (BPA)

**Subject to Availability

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Frequently Asked Questions

The Cumene Market market is studied from 2016 - 2026.

The Cumene Market is growing at a CAGR of 4.88% over the next 5 years.

Asia Pacific is growing at the highest CAGR over 2021- 2026.

Asia Pacific holds highest share in 2020.

Cepsa, INEOS, KUMHO P&B CHEMICALS.,INC., Dow, Koch Industries, Inc. are the major companies operating in Cumene Market.

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