Hydrochloric Acid Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2021 - 2026)

The Hydrochloric Acid Market is segmented by End-user Industry (Food and Beverage, Steel, Oil and Gas, Chemical, Textile, and Other End-user Industries) and Geography (Asia-Pacific, North America, Europe, South America, and Middle-East and Africa). The report offers market size and forecasts for Hydrochloric Acid in revenue (USD million) for all the above segments.

Market Snapshot

Hydrochloric Acid Market - Market Summary
Study Period: 2016 - 2026
Base Year: 2020
Fastest Growing Market: North America
Largest Market: Asia Pacific
CAGR: >5 %

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Market Overview

The hydrochloric acid market was valued at around USD 950 million in 2020, and the market is projected to register a CAGR of over 5% during the forecast period (2021-2026).

The COVID-19 pandemic had an adverse effect on the global economy, which includes disruption of the supply chain. Due to lockdown regulations and a deficient number of workers, the production in various chemical and other industries declined, and the supply of raw materials to the industries decreased. Several countries have been under complete lockdown, many factories running on minimal staffing or even closed temporarily. The levels of activities were very low, and many project schedules changed or postponed. Due to all these interruptions, except the healthcare sector, other end users started delaying non-essential purchases and disengages from the consuming processes by postponing their demands for hydrochloric acid.

  • Over the medium term, the major factors driving the growth of the market studied are increasing demand from the oil and gas industry and growing demand for pickling in the steel industry.
  • On the flip side, the pollution and damage to the environment, and health hazards of HCL are likely to affect the market studied. The HCL in the atmosphere causes atmospheric pollution and acid rain, among others, and it has short-term and long-term effects on human health.
  • The Asia-Pacific region dominated the global market, followed by North America.

Scope of the Report

Hydrochloric acid is colorless solution. It is a strong inorganic acid with distinctive pungent smell. Hydrochloric acid is an important laboratory reagent and industrial chemical. It is industrially prepared by dissolving hydrogen chloride in water. The hydrochloric acid market is segmented by end-user industry and by geography. By the end-user industry, the market is segmented into food and beverage, steel, oil and gas, chemical, textile, and other end-user industries. The report also covers the market size and forecast for the hydrochloric acid market in 15 countries across major regions. For each segment, the market sizing and forecast have been done on the basis of revenue (USD million).

End-user Industry
Food and Beverage
Oil and Gas
Other End-user Industries (Leather, Rubber, etc.)
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 for Pickling in the Steel Industry

  • Hydrochloric acid is used in the pickling process in the steel industry. Pickling is a process used for the removal of impurities, such as inorganic contaminants, stains, rust or scale from ferrous metals, copper, precious metals, and aluminum alloys.
  • From 1964, hydrochloric acid has replaced sulfuric acid in many steel pickling facilities. Owing to this, the requirement for hydrochloric acid increased from various steel production facilities.
  • The steel industry is the major end-user industry of hydrochloric acid. According to world steel association, global crude steel production in the year 2020 has reached 1,864 million tons, down by 0.9% compared to 2019 due to pandemic and is expected to increase during forecast period.
  • The major quantity of steel is produced in the Asia-Pacific region, in countries, such as China, Japan, and India.
  • China is also projected to remain the largest consumer of iron and steel. The country’s production of crude steel is likely to increase during the forecast period, owing to the recovery in consumption.
  • Crude steel production in North America was 101.1 million tons in 2020, down 15.5% on 2019. The United States produced 72.7 million tons in 2020, down 17.2% on 2019. The production is expected to increase in future owing to recovering market conditions post COVID.
  • Overall, owing to the aforementioned factors, the market for hydrochloric acid is expected to grow during the forecast period.
Hydrochloric Acid Market - Segmentation

Asia-Pacific Region Dominated the Hydrochloric Acid Market

  • In the Asia-Pacific region, China is the largest economy in terms of GDP. The country witnessed about 6.1% growth in its GDP during 2019, even after the trade disturbance caused due to its trade war with the United States. The economic growth rate of China in 2020 was initially expected to be moderate as compared to the previous year. However, due to the onset of COVID-19 in 2020, the economic growth of China is estimated to contract to some extent and is expected to witness recovery in 2021.
  • In the oil and gas industry, HCL is commonly used in the stimulation of oil and gas wells, particularly in carbonate formations. With increasing demand in countries like China and India, oil and gas companies are planning on expanding their manufacturing activities, resulting in the increased consumption of hydrochloric acid.
  • In 2019, the Asia-Pacific region produced oil (crude oil, shale oil, oil sands, and NGLs) around 7.65 million barrels daily (1,043.65 thousand tons daily).
  • The steel industry is one of the major end-user industries of hydrochloric acid. The major quantity of steel is produced in the Asia-Pacific region, in countries such as China, Japan, and India. Asia produced 1,374.9 million tons of crude steel in 2020, an increase of 1.5% compared to 2019. China's crude steel production in 2020 reached 1,053 million ton, up by 5.2% compared to 2019. Japan's crude steel production in 2020 reached 83.2 million ton, and it decreased compared to 99.3 million ton in 2019.
  • India is a growing economy and holds great potential for future market opportunities. The country witnessed a negative GDP growth rate of -10.3% in 2020, from 4.2% in 2019. The COVID-19 outbreak persists in the first quarter of 2021 as well, which, in turn, is expected to continue affecting the overall production, employment, income, and demand scenario in the country during 2021.
  • With a growing population in India, developments are taking place in the industries, such as food, chemical, and textile, thereby increasing the market for hydrochloric acid.
  • Moreover, the country’s government has been taking initiatives to attract FDI in the manufacturing sector in order to make India a manufacturing hub. The government is targeting an increase in the GDP share of the manufacturing sector, from 16% to 25%, by 2022.
  • Owing to the impact of COVID-19, the region has witnessed a decline in 2020, due to the slowdown in almost all the end-user industries except healthcare. However, recovery is expected in 2021, and the market for hydrochloric acid in the region is expected to have high growth during the forecast period.
Hydrochloric Acid Market - Regional Trend

Competitive Landscape

The hydrochloric acid market is fragmented in nature. Some of the major players in the market include Solvay, BASF SE, AGC Chemicals, Occidental Petroleum Corporation, and ERCO Worldwide, among others.

Recent Developments

  • In October 2020, the Univar Solutions Inc. and PVS Chemicals Inc. (PVS) announced PVS sourcing agreements for Hydrochloric Acid to Univar Solutions. This agreement further expands Univar Solutions' large and robust network for its HCL business in North America. As part of the agreement, Univar Solutions becomes a strategic provider of HCL for PVS, which is one of the largest managers of chlorides used in the production of finished steel throughout North America.

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 from the Oil and Gas Industry

      2. 4.1.2 Demand for Pickling in the Steel Industry

      3. 4.1.3 Other Drivers

    2. 4.2 Restraints

      1. 4.2.1 Effects on Humans and the Environment

      2. 4.2.2 Impact of COVID-19

      3. 4.2.3 Other Restraints

    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


    1. 5.1 End-user Industry

      1. 5.1.1 Food and Beverage

      2. 5.1.2 Steel

      3. 5.1.3 Oil and Gas

      4. 5.1.4 Chemical

      5. 5.1.5 Textile

      6. 5.1.6 Other End-user Industries (Leather, Rubber, etc.)

    2. 5.2 Geography

      1. 5.2.1 Asia-Pacific

        1. China

        2. India

        3. Japan

        4. South Korea

        5. Rest of Asia-Pacific

      2. 5.2.2 North America

        1. United States

        2. Canada

        3. Mexico

      3. 5.2.3 Europe

        1. Germany

        2. United Kingdom

        3. Italy

        4. France

        5. Rest of Europe

      4. 5.2.4 South America

        1. Brazil

        2. Argentina

        3. Rest of South America

      5. 5.2.5 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 / Ranking Analysis**

    3. 6.3 Strategies Adopted by Leading Players

    4. 6.4 Company Profiles

      1. 6.4.1 AGC Chemicals

      2. 6.4.2 BASF SE

      3. 6.4.3 Coogee Chemicals

      4. 6.4.4 Covestro AG

      5. 6.4.5 Detrex Corporation

      6. 6.4.6 Dongyue Group

      7. 6.4.7 Dow

      8. 6.4.8 ERCO Worldwide

      9. 6.4.9 Ercros SA

      10. 6.4.10 Inovyn

      11. 6.4.11 Nouryon Industrial Chemicals

      12. 6.4.12 Occidental Petroleum Corporation

      13. 6.4.13 Olin Corporation

      14. 6.4.14 PCC Group

      15. 6.4.15 Shin-Etsu Chemical Co., Ltd

      16. 6.4.16 Solvay

      17. 6.4.17 Tessenderlo Group

      18. 6.4.18 TOAGOSEI CO. LTD

      19. 6.4.19 Vynova Group

      20. 6.4.20 Westlake Chemical Corporation

    5. *List Not Exhaustive

    1. 7.1 Increasing Demand for Synthetic Hydrochloric Acid

    2. 7.2 Other Opportunities

**Subject to Availability

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Frequently Asked Questions

The Hydrochloric Acid Market market is studied from 2016 - 2026.

The Hydrochloric Acid Market is growing at a CAGR of >5% over the next 5 years.

North America is growing at the highest CAGR over 2021- 2026.

Asia Pacific holds highest share in 2020.

Solvay , BASF SE , ERCO Worldwide , Occidental Petroleum Corporation, AGC Inc. are the major companies operating in Hydrochloric Acid Market.

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