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

The Refractories Market is segmented by Product Type (Non-clay Refractory and Clay Refractory), End-user Industry (Iron and Steel, Energy and Chemicals, Non-ferrous Metals, Cement, Ceramic, Glass, and Other End-user Industries), and Geography (Asia-Pacific, North America, Europe, South America, and Middle-East and Africa). The report offers the market size and forecasts for refractories in volume (kiloton) for all the above segments.

Market Snapshot

refractories market
Study Period: 2017-2027
Base Year: 2021
Fastest Growing Market: Asia Pacific
Largest Market: Asia Pacific
CAGR: >5 %

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Market Overview

The refractories market was valued at over 50,000 kiloton in 2021, and it is expected to register a CAGR of greater than 5% during the forecast period (2022-2027).

Due to COVID-19, numerous countries were in lockdown, which significantly affected the global economy, the economic and industrial activities came to a temporary halt, and the refractories market also witnessed a repercussion in terms of both production and demand from the end-user industries, such as iron and steel, cement, energy and chemicals, ceramics, etc.​

· Over the medium term, the major factors driving the market studied are the strong growth of iron and steel production in the emerging countries and the increase in the production of non-ferrous materials. The refractories are used for internal lining applications in iron steel and non-ferrous productions.

· Moreover, high demand coming from the glass industry is the major factor driving the growth.

· On the flip side, due to the increasing environmental awareness, government agencies and environmental agencies across the world are laying down the guidelines regarding the usage and disposal of refractories. This is likely to hinder market growth.

· The Asia-Pacific region is likely to dominate the market and register the highest CAGR. Emerging countries like China, Russia, Mexico, and South Africa are investing heavily in large-scale infrastructure projects, which are expected to significantly boost the growth of the iron and steel industry.

Scope of the Report

A refractory or refractory material is a material that, at high temperatures, is resistant to decomposition by heat, pressure, or chemical attack and retains strength and form. Refractories are used as a primary material for internal linings in large industrial equipment for their safe, low-maintenance, and cost-effective operations. The refractories market is segmented by product type, end-user industry, and geography. By type, the market is segmented into non-clay refractories and clay refractories. By non-clay refractories, the market is segmented into magnesite brick, zirconia brick, silica brick, chromite brick, and other non-clay refractories. By clay refractories, the market is segmented into high alumina, fireclay, and insulating refractories. By end-user industry, the market is segmented into iron and steel, energy and chemicals, non-ferrous metals, cement, ceramic, and glass. The report also covers the market size and forecasts for the refractories market in 15 countries across the major regions. For each segment, the market sizing and forecasts have been done on the basis of volume (kiloton).

Product Type
Non-clay Refractory
Magnesite Brick (Dead Burned Magnesia, Fused Magnesia, and Caustic Calcined Magnesia)
Zirconia Brick
Silica Brick
Chromite Brick
Other Product Types (Carbides, Silicates)
Clay Refractory
High Alumina
End-user Industry
Iron and Steel
Energy and Chemicals
Non-ferrous Metals
Other End-user Industries (Paper and Pulp, Lime Production)
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 the Iron and Steel Industry

  • The iron and steel industry is the major end users of refractories, which accounts for around 60% of the market. These materials can withstand high temperatures, ranging from 260°C (500°F) to 1850°C (3400°F), without any major change in their physical properties.
  • The major applications of refractories in the iron and steel industry include usage in internal linings of furnaces to make iron and steel, in furnaces for heating steel before further processing, in vessels for holding and transporting metal and slag, in the flues or stacks through which hot gases are conducted, and other applications.
  • According to the World Steel Association, global steel production reached about 1950.5 metric ton in 2021, registering an increase of 3.7% compared to 1880.4 metric ton in 2020. This indicates the demand prospect prevailing in the global market, which is instrumental in driving steel production activities.
  • In terms of consumption, Asia-Pacific is currently the largest consumer of refractories in the iron and steel industry, followed by Europe and North America. In North America, the United States is expected to witness the highest growth rate in the consumption of refractories in this industry during the forecast period.
  • In the European Union, a mild recovery in demand for steel continues while improving the economic sentiments and investment conditions. However, uncertainties in the political landscape related to the refugee crisis and Brexit are some of the risks to the economic condition. The demand for steel in the region is anticipated to grow at a slow pace over the forecast period.
  • All the aforementioned factors are expected to drive the global market during the forecast period.
refractories market analysis

China to Dominate the Asia-Pacific Region

  • In the Asia-Pacific region, China is the largest economy and has one of the largest manufacturing and production industries in the world. China dominates the refractories market in terms of consumption and production due to the local availability of raw materials, such as magnesite.
  • The iron and steel industry consumes the largest portion of refractories globally and in China as well. Moreover, growing construction activities are creating demand for the production of iron and steel in the country and have been driving the growth of the refractories market in recent times.
  • China is the largest producer of steel in the world. In 2021, the country's annual production capacity of crude steel stood at 1,032.8 metric ton, registering more than 50% of global production. This huge demand for steel in the country projects market opportunities for refractories.
  • Furthermore, China is experiencing massive growth in its construction sector. According to the National Bureau of Statistics of China, in 2021, the construction output in China was valued at approximately CNY 29.31 trillion. Thus, it is likely to provide a huge demand in the market studied.
  • Furthermore, in 2021, electric vehicle sales in China skyrocketed by 154%, with total electric vehicle sales of 3.3 million units in 2021, up from 1.3 million in 2020. This is in accordance with the Ministry of Finance of China's statement to provide financial subsidies for new electric vehicles, as they will be exempted from vehicle purchase tax between January 1, 2021, to December 31, 2022.
  • Overall, the demand for refractories in China and the Asia-Pacific region is expected to grow at a significant rate during the forecast period.
refractories market share

Competitive Landscape

The refractories market stands to be fragmented in nature, where the top five companies cater to about 34%-35% of the global market demand.​ The major players (not in any particular order) include RHI Magnesita GmbH, Vesuvius, Krosaki Harima Corporation, Shinagawa Refractories Co. Ltd, and Saint-Gobain.

Recent Developments

  • In May 2021, ArcelorMittal Refractories, a part of the ArcelorMittal Group, entered a partnership agreement with Krosaki Harima Corporation. The companies will carry out tasks to optimize production capacities and expand ArcelorMittal Refractories’ portfolio of refractory products using Krosaki Harima’s manufacturing technology.
  • In June 2021, Imerys started the production at its new Vizhag refractory plant. The Imerys Group invested INR 350 crores in creating the facility to cater to domestic customers. The new plant will supply the refractory as well as the construction market with calcium aluminate binders.
  • In March 2021, the Refratechnik Group and Höganäs Borgestad Group entered a strategic agreement for the supply of refractory products.

Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Drivers

      1. 4.1.1 Growing Iron and Steel Production, Especially in Asia-Pacific and Middle East

      2. 4.1.2 Increase in the Production of Non-ferrous Materials

      3. 4.1.3 High Demand from the Glass Industry

    2. 4.2 Restraints

      1. 4.2.1 Environmental Concerns and Health and Safety Issues

      2. 4.2.2 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 Product Type

      1. 5.1.1 Non-clay Refractory

        1. Magnesite Brick (Dead Burned Magnesia, Fused Magnesia, and Caustic Calcined Magnesia)

        2. Zirconia Brick

        3. Silica Brick

        4. Chromite Brick

        5. Other Product Types (Carbides, Silicates)

      2. 5.1.2 Clay Refractory

        1. High Alumina

        2. Fireclay

        3. Insulating

    2. 5.2 End-user Industry

      1. 5.2.1 Iron and Steel

      2. 5.2.2 Energy and Chemicals

      3. 5.2.3 Non-ferrous Metals

      4. 5.2.4 Cement

      5. 5.2.5 Ceramic

      6. 5.2.6 Glass

      7. 5.2.7 Other End-user Industries (Paper and Pulp, Lime Production)

    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. United Kingdom

        3. Italy

        4. France

        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 Chosun Refractories

      2. 6.4.2 Harbisonwalker International

      3. 6.4.3 IFGL Refractories Ltd

      4. 6.4.4 Imerys

      5. 6.4.5 Krosaki Harima Corporation

      6. 6.4.6 Magnezit Group

      7. 6.4.7 Minerals Technologies Inc.

      8. 6.4.8 Morgan Advanced Materials

      9. 6.4.9 Refratechnik

      10. 6.4.10 Resco Products Inc.

      11. 6.4.11 RHI Magnesita GmbH

      12. 6.4.12 Shinagawa Refractories Co. Ltd

      13. 6.4.13 Vesuvius

      14. 6.4.14 Saint-Gobain

      15. 6.4.15 INTOCAST AG

      16. 6.4.16 Puyang Refractories Group Co. Ltd

    5. *List Not Exhaustive

    1. 7.1 Growth Potential of the Indian Steel Industry

**Subject to Availability

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Frequently Asked Questions

The Refractories Market market is studied from 2017 - 2027.

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

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

Asia Pacific holds highest share in 2021.

Krosaki Harima Corporation, RHI Magnesita GmbH, Vesuvius, SHINAGAWA REFRACTORIES CO.,LTD., Saint-Gobain are the major companies operating in Refractories Market.

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