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

The Specialty Chemicals Market is segmented by Paints and Coatings - Application; Catalysts - Function; Construction Chemicals - Application; Cosmetic Chemicals - Application; Dyes, Inks, and Pigments - Type; Electronic Chemicals - Application; Water Treatment Chemicals - Function; Food Additives - Type; Agrochemicals - Type; Industrial and Institutional Cleaners - Application; Lubricant Additives - Product Type; Mining Chemicals - Function; Oilfield Chemicals - Application; Adhesives and Sealants - Technology; Plastic Additives - Plastic Type; Rubber Processing Chemicals - Application; Specialty Polymers; Textile Chemicals - Application; and Geography (Asia-Pacific, North America, Europe, South America, and Middle-East and Africa).

Market Snapshot

specialty chemicals market
Study Period: 2016 - 2026
Base Year: 2021
Fastest Growing Market: Asia Pacific
Largest Market: Asia Pacific
CAGR: >4 %
specialty chemicals industry

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Market Overview

The specialty chemicals market was estimated at around USD 900 billion in 2020, and the market is projected to register a CAGR of over 4% during the forecast period (2021-2026).

The market was negatively impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak in 2020. Owing to pandemic scenario, several countries went into lockdown, which led to supply chain disruptions, work stoppages, and labor shortages. This negatively impacted various industries, like construction, mining, automotive, cosmetics, food and beverages, and other industries. According to OICA, in 2020, the global automotive production in the first quarter was about 17.9 million units, in the second quarter was 31.1 million units and in the third quarter was 52.1 units, declining about 23.1%, 32.4%, and 22.9%, respectively, from the previous year at the same time. The car sales for the first ten months of 2020 in major global car markets of Europe, the United States, Japan, Brazil, India, and China were down by 27.3%, 17%, 14.7%, 30.9%, 24.6%, and 10%, respectively, in comparison to the previous year. Similarly, several industries were severely affected. However, the condition is expected to recover in 2021, thereby driving the market's growth over the forecast period.

  • Over the short term, the major factors driving the growth of the market studied are the robust growth of construction activities, especially in Asia-Pacific and Middle East & Africa.
  • On the flip side, increasing environmental regulations, decreasing fossil fuel reserves, and the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic are the restraints hampering the growth of the market studied.
  • Agrochemicals dominated the specialty chemicals market, and they are expected to grow during the forecast period, which is majorly driven by the increasing population and growth in the demand for food across the world.
  • Growing R&D for developing new products is likely to provide an opportunity for the market studied over the forecast period.
  • Asia-Pacific dominated the market across the world, owing to the huge customer base, leading to high demand for specialty chemicals, increasing industrial production, and robust growth of the construction sector in the region.

Scope of the Report

Specialty chemicals are the chemical products, on which many other industries such as construction chemicals, paints and coatings, textile chemicals, mining chemicals, plastic additives, and others rely on. The specialty chemicals market is segmented by paints and coatings - application; catalysts - function; construction chemicals - application; cosmetic chemicals - application; dyes, inks, and pigments - type; electronic chemicals - application; water treatment chemicals - function; food additives - type; agrochemicals - type; industrial and institutional cleaners - application; lubricant additives - product type; mining chemicals - function; oilfield chemicals - application; adhesives and sealants - technology; plastic additives - plastic type; rubber processing chemicals - application; specialty polymers; and textile chemicals - application. The report also offers market size and forecasts for 16 countries across major regions. For all the segments, the market sizing and forecasts have been done on the basis of value (USD million).

Paints and Coatings
Other Applications
Chemical Synthesis Catalysts
Petroleum Refining Catalysts
Polymerization Catalysts
Construction Chemicals
Public Space
Cosmetic Chemicals
Hair Care
Skin Care
Oral Care
Personal Hygiene
Other Applications
Dyes, Inks, and Pigments
Organic Pigments
Inorganic Pigments
Electronic Chemicals
Semiconductors and Integrated Circuits
Printed Circuit Boards
Water Treatment Chemicals
Biocides and Disinfectants
Defoamers and Defoaming Agents
pH Adjusters and Softeners
Other Functions
Food Additives
Natural Additives
Synthetic Additives
Other Crop Protection Chemicals
Industrial and Institutional Cleaners
General Purpose Cleaners
Disinfectants and Sanitizers
Laundry Care Products
Vehicle Wash Products
Lubricant Additives
Product Type
Dispersants and Emulsifiers
Oxidation Inhibitors
Extreme-pressure Additives and Anti-wear Additives
Viscosity Index Modifiers
Friction Modifiers
Corrosion Inhibitors
Other Product Types
Mining Chemicals
Flotation Chemicals
Extraction Chemicals
Grinding Aids
Oilfield Chemicals
Drilling and Cementing
Workover and Completion
Well Stimulation
Enhanced Oil Recovery
Adhesives and Sealants
Water-borne Adhesives
Solvent-borne Adhesives
Hot-melt Adhesives
Reactive Adhesives
Other Adhesives
Plastic Additives
Plastic Type
Polyethylene (PE)
Polystyrene (PS)
Polypropylene (PP)
Polyamide (PA)
Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET)
Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)
Polycarbonate (PC)
Other Plastic Types
Rubber Processing Chemicals
Specialty Polymers
Textile Chemicals
Coating and Sizing Chemicals
Colorants and Auxiliaries
Finishing Agents
Desizing Agents
Other Types
South Korea
ASEAN Countries
Rest of Asia-Pacific
North America
United States
Rest of North America
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

Agrochemicals Segment to Dominate the Market Demand

  • The agrochemicals segment dominated the share in the specialty chemicals market. The growth of the segment is extensively driven by the decreasing per capita arable land and increasing demand for food across the world.
  • The global population is increasing at a rapid rate. This growing population is adding to the food demand. Supplying food to this growing population has become a threat. On the other hand, arable land is declining due to industrialization and urbanization. Fertilizers have been used for a long time to increase the productivity of crops, thus, enhancing the demand for agrochemicals over the forecast period.
  • With the increasing per capita income and growing population level, the demand for food crops and cash crops is estimated to increase globally. For instance, as per the FAO, the food demand in the United States is expected to increase by 50-90% by 2050.
  • The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) have published projections of an increase in global food demand out to 2050. The FAO projections indicate that world food demand may increase by 70% by 2050, with much of the projected increase in global food demand expected to come from rising consumer incomes in regions such as Asia-Pacific, Eastern Europe, and Latin America.
  • Furthermore, owing to the growing concerns about nutrient efficiency uptake by plants and the growing regulatory health and environmental concerns, micronutrient fertilizers, bio-based fertilizers, and specialty fertilizers (like liquid fertilizers) are gaining popularity.
  • Bio-herbicides that use microbes as biological weed control agents are also gaining popularity in integrated pest management techniques, along with synthetic herbicides. Although the segment constitutes only a small part of the industry, it is expected to grow at a significant growth rate.
  • Moreover, contracting agricultural land and the loss of crops, owing to the incidence of pests and diseases, are the significant factors driving the market for insecticides.
  • Hence, all such favorable trends are expected to drive the demand for the agrochemicals market during the forecast period. This is expected to drive the demand for specialty chemicals.
specialty chemicals market size

Asia-Pacific Region to Dominate the Market

  • The Asia-Pacific region dominated the specialty chemicals market, and it is likely to retain its position during the forecast period due to robust growth of the construction sector, increasing demand for cosmetic products, growing investment and production in the increasing electrical and electronics industry output, increasing demand for adhesives and plastics from the packaging industry, and increasing installations of water treatment systems from the industries in the region.
  • The growing population in the region, especially in countries such as China and India, is increasing the demand for food. This is expected to drive the market for agrochemicals and consequently help the specialty polymers market to grow over the forecast period.
  • The growth of the Asia-Pacific construction sector is majorly driven by the expansion of the service sector, leading to an increase in the demand for office spaces, an increase in residential construction projects, and inflow of investments from multi-national companies to set up an industrial base in the region. Such factors are likely to increase the demand for paints and coatings, adhesives and sealants, construction chemicals, and specialty polymers in the region during the forecast period.
  • The increase in population in China and India is expected to boost the construction industry. The Chinese government has rolled out massive construction plans, including making provisions for the movement of 250 million people to its new megacities over the next ten years, creating a major scope for the market studied.
  • India is also likely to witness an investment of around USD 1.3 trillion in housing over the next seven years, where the country is likely to witness the construction of 60 million new homes. The availability of affordable housing is expected to rise around 70% by 2025 in India. Besides, the Indian government's ‘Housing for All by 2022’ is also a major game-changer for the industry.
  • The cosmetic industry is also witnessing strong growth in demand in the region, which is fueled by the increased usage of cosmetic products, due to rising demand for anti-aging cosmetic products from baby boomers and X generation, western culture influence on youth, increased women employment, and continuous innovation of products attracting the masses. This is increasing the cosmetic production in the region, leading to a rise in demand for cosmetic chemicals.
  • Hence, all such favorable trends are collectively likely to drive the growth of the specialty chemicals market in the region during the forecast period.
speciality chemicals industry report

Competitive Landscape

The specialty chemicals market is highly fragmented, with numerous players holding a significant share of the market. Some of the noticeable players in the market include 3M, BASF SE, H.B. Fuller, Huntsman International LLC, and Henkel AG & Co. KGaA, among others.

Recent Developments

  • In Nov 2019, Axalta, a leading global supplier of liquid and powder coatings, announced that it completed the acquisition of Capital Paints LLC, a UAE-based thermosetting powder coatings manufacturer.
  • In Aug 2019, PPG completed its acquisition of Dexmet Corporation, a manufacturer of specialty materials for surfaces in aerospace, automotive, and industrial applications.
  • In Jul 2019, Arkema completed the acquisition of ArrMaz, a global leader in specialty surfactants for crop nutrition, mining, and infrastructure markets.

Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Industry Value Chain Analysis

    2. 4.2 Porter's Five Forces Analysis

      1. 4.2.1 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      2. 4.2.2 Bargaining Power of Consumers

      3. 4.2.3 Threat of New Entrants

      4. 4.2.4 Threat of Substitute Products and Services

      5. 4.2.5 Degree of Competition

    3. 4.3 Raw Material Analysis


    1. 5.1 Paints and Coatings

      1. 5.1.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.1.2 Application

        1. Architectural

        2. Automotive

        3. Industrial

        4. Wood

        5. Other Applications

    2. 5.2 Catalysts

      1. 5.2.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.2.2 Function

        1. Chemical Synthesis Catalysts

        2. Petroleum Refining Catalysts

        3. Polymerization Catalysts

    3. 5.3 Construction Chemicals

      1. 5.3.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.3.2 Application

        1. Commercial

        2. Industrial

        3. Infrastructure

        4. Residential

        5. Public Space

    4. 5.4 Cosmetic Chemicals

      1. 5.4.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.4.2 Application

        1. Hair Care

        2. Skin Care

        3. Oral Care

        4. Personal Hygiene

        5. Other Applications

    5. 5.5 Dyes, Inks, and Pigments

      1. 5.5.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.5.2 Type

        1. Inks

        2. Dyes

        3. Organic Pigments

        4. Inorganic Pigments

    6. 5.6 Electronic Chemicals

      1. 5.6.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.6.2 Application

        1. Semiconductors and Integrated Circuits

        2. Printed Circuit Boards

    7. 5.7 Water Treatment Chemicals

      1. 5.7.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.7.2 Function

        1. Flocculants

        2. Coagulants

        3. Biocides and Disinfectants

        4. Defoamers and Defoaming Agents

        5. pH Adjusters and Softeners

        6. Other Functions

    8. 5.8 Food Additives

      1. 5.8.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.8.2 Type

        1. Natural Additives

        2. Synthetic Additives

    9. 5.9 Agrochemicals

      1. 5.9.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.9.2 Type

        1. Fertilizers

        2. Herbicide

        3. Fungicide

        4. Insecticide

        5. Nematicide

        6. Molluscicide

        7. Other Crop Protection Chemicals

    10. 5.10 Industrial and Institutional Cleaners

      1. 5.10.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.10.2 Application

        1. General Purpose Cleaners

        2. Disinfectants and Sanitizers

        3. Laundry Care Products

        4. Vehicle Wash Products

    11. 5.11 Lubricant Additives

      1. 5.11.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.11.2 Product Type

        1. Dispersants and Emulsifiers

        2. Detergents

        3. Oxidation Inhibitors

        4. Extreme-pressure Additives and Anti-wear Additives

        5. Viscosity Index Modifiers

        6. Friction Modifiers

        7. Corrosion Inhibitors

        8. Other Product Types

    12. 5.12 Mining Chemicals

      1. 5.12.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.12.2 Function

        1. Flotation Chemicals

        2. Extraction Chemicals

        3. Grinding Aids

    13. 5.13 Oilfield Chemicals

      1. 5.13.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.13.2 Application

        1. Drilling and Cementing

        2. Workover and Completion

        3. Well Stimulation

        4. Production

        5. Enhanced Oil Recovery

    14. 5.14 Adhesives and Sealants

      1. 5.14.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.14.2 Technology

        1. Water-borne Adhesives

        2. Solvent-borne Adhesives

        3. Hot-melt Adhesives

        4. Reactive Adhesives

        5. Other Adhesives

        6. Sealants

    15. 5.15 Plastic Additives

      1. 5.15.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.15.2 Plastic Type

        1. Polyethylene (PE)

        2. Polystyrene (PS)

        3. Polypropylene (PP)

        4. Polyamide (PA)

        5. Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET)

        6. Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)

        7. Polycarbonate (PC)

        8. Other Plastic Types

    16. 5.16 Rubber Processing Chemicals

      1. 5.16.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.16.2 Application

        1. Tire

        2. Non-tire

    17. 5.17 Specialty Polymers

      1. 5.17.1 Dynamics

    18. 5.18 Textile Chemicals

      1. 5.18.1 Dynamics

      2. 5.18.2 Type

        1. Coating and Sizing Chemicals

        2. Colorants and Auxiliaries

        3. Finishing Agents

        4. Desizing Agents

        5. Other Types

    19. 5.19 Geography

      1. 5.19.1 Asia-Pacific

        1. China

        2. India

        3. Japan

        4. South Korea

        5. ASEAN Countries

        6. Rest of Asia-Pacific

      2. 5.19.2 North America

        1. United States

        2. Canada

        3. Mexico

        4. Rest of North America

      3. 5.19.3 Europe

        1. Germany

        2. United Kingdom

        3. Italy

        4. France

        5. Spain

        6. Rest of Europe

      4. 5.19.4 South America

        1. Brazil

        2. Argentina

        3. Rest of South America

      5. 5.19.5 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

      1. 6.2.1 Adhesives and Sealants

      2. 6.2.2 Agrochemicals

      3. 6.2.3 Construction Chemicals

      4. 6.2.4 Lubricant Additives

      5. 6.2.5 Mining Chemicals

      6. 6.2.6 Oilfield Chemicals

      7. 6.2.7 Paints and Coatings

      8. 6.2.8 Specialty Polymers

      9. 6.2.9 Water Treatment Chemicals

    3. 6.3 Strategies Adopted by Leading Players

    4. 6.4 Company Profiles

      1. 6.4.1 3M

      2. 6.4.2 AECI

      3. 6.4.3 Afton Chemical

      4. 6.4.4 Akzo Nobel NV

      5. 6.4.5 Albemarle Corporation

      6. 6.4.6 ALTANA

      7. 6.4.7 Archroma

      8. 6.4.8 Arkema Group

      9. 6.4.9 Ashland

      10. 6.4.10 Asian Paints

      11. 6.4.11 Axalta Coating Systems

      12. 6.4.12 Baker Hughes Company

      13. 6.4.13 BASF SE

      14. 6.4.14 Berger Paints India Limited

      15. 6.4.15 Buckman

      16. 6.4.16 Chevron Corporation

      17. 6.4.17 Clariant

      18. 6.4.18 Corteva

      19. 6.4.19 Covestro AG

      20. 6.4.20 DIC Corporation

      21. 6.4.21 Dow

      22. 6.4.22 DSM

      23. 6.4.23 DuPont

      24. 6.4.24 Eastman Chemical Company

      25. 6.4.25 Ecolab

      26. 6.4.26 Evonik Industries AG

      27. 6.4.27 Exxon Mobil Corporation

      28. 6.4.28 Ferro Corporation

      29. 6.4.29 Flint Group

      30. 6.4.30 FMC Corporation

      31. 6.4.31 GCP Applied Technologies Inc.

      32. 6.4.32 H.B. Fuller Company

      33. 6.4.33 Halliburton

      34. 6.4.34 Henkel AG & Co. KGaA

      35. 6.4.35 Hexcel Corporation

      36. 6.4.36 Huntsman International LLC

      37. 6.4.37 Infineum International Limited

      38. 6.4.38 Kemira

      39. 6.4.39 KRONOS Worldwide Inc.

      40. 6.4.40 Kurita Water Industries Ltd

      41. 6.4.41 LafargeHolcim

      42. 6.4.42 LANXESS

      43. 6.4.43 Lonza

      44. 6.4.44 MAPEI SpA

      45. 6.4.45 Merck KGaA

      46. 6.4.46 NIPSEA GROUP

      47. 6.4.47 Nouryon

      48. 6.4.48 Nutrien Ltd

      49. 6.4.49 Pidilite Industries Ltd

      50. 6.4.50 PPG Industries Inc.

      51. 6.4.51 Procter & Gamble

      52. 6.4.52 RPM International Inc.

      53. 6.4.53 SABIC

      54. 6.4.54 Schlumberger Limited

      55. 6.4.55 Sika AG

      56. 6.4.56 Solenis

      57. 6.4.57 Solvay

      58. 6.4.58 Syngenta

      59. 6.4.59 The Chemours Company

      60. 6.4.60 The Lubrizol Corporation

      61. 6.4.61 The Sherwin-Williams Company

      62. 6.4.62 Venator Materials PLC

      63. 6.4.63 Veolia

      64. 6.4.64 W. R. Grace & Co.

      65. 6.4.65 Wacker Chemie AG

      66. 6.4.66 Yara

    5. *List Not Exhaustive

**Subject to Availability

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Frequently Asked Questions

The Specialty Chemicals Market market is studied from 2016 - 2026.

The Specialty Chemicals Market is growing at a CAGR of >4% over the next 5 years.

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

Asia Pacific holds highest share in 2021.

3M, H.B. Fuller, Henkel AG & Co. KGaA, BASF SE, Huntsman International LLC are the major companies operating in Specialty Chemicals Market.

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