Global synthetic rubber market has the largest end-user in the tires segment. It accounts for more than 50% share of the market revenue. It is projected to be the fastest growing segment in global synthetic rubber market. Synthetic rubbers are primarily considered as a substitute to the natural rubbers. Sturdy development of synthetic rubbers in the global rubber market can be accredited to numerous interrelated factors. Major reason behind the shift of consumers from natural rubber market to synthetic rubber market was the high instability in prices of natural rubber. Geographical limitations on rubber plantations, growing demand for rubber all over the world, varying supply caused by the fluctuations in obtaining raw materials and long transport distances led to unpredictable prices of the natural rubber market. Thus, the demand for synthetic rubber has escalated due to the changing dynamics of the global rubber market. This has helped industrial rubber consumer to bring about higher profit margin and cost benefits.
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Synthetic rubber market has the biggest product segment in Styrene Butadiene Rubber (SBR). It accounted for over 30% of the shares. SBR is a copolymer made up of styrene and butadiene in the ratio of 3:1 by weight. It provides improved process ability, resistance to abrasion and heat aging. SBR, blended with natural rubber, is predominantly used in the production of car tires. Few of the other areas where SBR is utilized includes gaskets, floor tiles, adhesives, conveyor belts, hoses and footwear. Nitrile Butadiene Rubber (NBR) has been projected to be the most rapidly emerging product segment of global synthetic rubber market over the forecast period. Growth of nitrile butadiene rubber is largely attributed to the growing demand for NBR in automotive applications.
Global synthetic rubber market has witnessed a strong growth rate in the recent past owing to the growing demand for tires, particularly green tires. Factors such as excellent performance of the tires and tire labelling regulations may favorably impact market growth. It will be driven by the growing automotive industry, growth in emerging economies and diminishing prices of crude oil. In the recent past, demand for synthetic rubber has witnessed a significant rise in manufacturing both commercial vehicles and cars.
Synthetic rubber is widely used in the footwear industry around the globe. This has led to a high demand for SBR synthetic rubber type which is used in the production of car tires in the automotive industry. Hence, expansion in the footwear market will also provide a helping hand to the global synthetic rubber market. Rise of bio-based feedstock presenting a high market opportunity is expected to drive the demand for synthetic rubber market further. The key players in the global synthetic rubber market will also benefit from it. The proportionate capacity of synthetic rubber has increased more than their relative demand which is expected to drive the market for synthetic rubber.
However, few factors may restrain the growth of the market. The surplus supply created by the regular additions to the capacity is projected to negatively impact the market. Another factor that may obstruct the market growth is the increasing substitution of synthetic rubber by natural rubber. There has been a decrease in the prices of natural rubber which is hampering the growth of global synthetic rubber market. Further to this, factors such as depletion of fossil fuels, growing concerns regarding the environment and regulatory issues may pose challenges to the market growth over the forecast period.
Asia Pacific synthetic rubber market is expected to witness the fastest growth over the next seven years. Growing Chinese manufacturing industry is projected to produce an enormous number of footwear and tire units which will lead to the highest growth rate for Asia Pacific. The U.S., India, Russia and Japan are expected to experience a high growth in the global synthetic rubber market.
Four key players functioning in global synthetic rubber market include Exxon Mobil Corp (ExxonMobil), Lanxess AG, Kumho Petrochemical Co. and Good Year. The other major industry participants include DuPont, Dynasol Elastomers, China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), China Petroleum &Chemical Corporation, The Dow Chemical Company, TSRC Corporation, Sumitomo Chemical Co. Ltd., DSM Elastomers, Sinopec, Showa Denko K.K, VersalisS.p.A. and Asahi Kasei Corporation.
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