Methanol Market Overview

Methanol is a liquid which is manufactured mostly through oxidization of methane or through synthesis of carbon monoxide and hydrogen. Methanol is termed as wood alcohol since it depicts properties similar to conventional fuels. Methanol is chiefly utilized as a fuel in vehicles as well as an antifreeze solution in automobiles. It is also used as a feedstock for manufacturing various products such as formaldehyde, acetic acid, MTBE, DME, and others. It is used widely in numerous other industrial applications. It is a volatile, colorless, toxic, and flammable liquid. Globally, methanol is produced at around 90 methanol plants. Most of these methanol plants are located in Asia Pacific, Latin America, North America and others.

Methanol market is segmented on the basis of feedstock type, application, and end-use industry. On the basis of feedstock type, the market is segmented into oil & gas and coal. Oil & gas feedstock segment is expected to contribute the major market share in the global market. However, lower cost of coal has boosted coal based production of methanol. On the basis of application, methanol market is segmented into formaldehyde, acetic acid, MTBE, DME, and gasoline. Formaldehyde application segment of methanol holds major market share and is expected to dominate the overall market during the forecast period. On the basis of end-use industry, methanol market is segmented into automotive industry, construction industry, and others. Automotive end user industry segment is expected to hold leading share of methanol industry.

Global Methanol Market Taxonomy

The global methanol market is classified on the basis of the following segments:

  • Feedstock Type
    • Oil & Gas
    • Coal
  • Application
    • Formaldehyde
    • Acetic Acid
    • MTBE
    • DME
    • Gasoline
  • End-use Industry
    • Automotive
    • Construction
    • Others

Prevalent Scenario in Methanol Market

Methanol is extensively utilized at filling stations and as alternative fuel which is expected to drive the demand for methanol. Methanol is widely used at various industries such as construction, automotive, textile, and furniture industries. Increased activities in these industries have further boosted the demand for methanol across the globe. Energy and petrochemical industries have increased their production which has led to high demand for methanol in these industries. Formaldehyde and acetic acid are widely used derivatives of methanol across the globe. Natural gas is the primary source of feedstock for manufacturing methanol. Asia Pacific is the leading market for methanol across the globe. China dominates the methanol market in Asia Pacific. China has been utilizing coal as the primary source of feedstock for methanol production owing to its low cost and easy availability. Share of coal feedstock is expected to increase owing to increase in share of China in global methanol market.

Future Outlook of Methanol Market

Globally, various mixtures of methanol are being utilized as alternative fuel source for vehicles and other applications. This trend is expected to boost the demand for methanol. Derivatives of methanol are widely used for various industrial applications and processes which are expected to boost the demand for methanol in these industries. Applications such olefins, DME, and gasoline blending provide huge growth opportunities for methanol market. Regions such Middle East and Africa and Latin America have also boosted the production of methanol owing to easy availability and low cost of natural gas in these regions. Production of methanol in North America has also increased owing to shale gas boom in the region. Production cost of methanol in North America has become competitive owing to these factors. Excess supply of methanol in the market and improved safety factors are expected to further drive the demand for methanol owing its low cost of production. Additionally, growing demand for biofuels and strict emissions norms are expected to further drive the demand for methanol across the globe during the forecast period. Asia Pacific is expected to be the leading market for methanol during the forecast period owing to high demand from countries such as China, India, Japan, and others.

Key Players

Some of the leading players operating in the global methanol market include BASF SE, Celanese Corporation, Methanex Corporation, Methanol Holdings (Trinidad) Limited (MHTL), Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Co., Inc. (MGC), Mitsui & Co., Ltd., Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas), SABIC, Valero Marketing and Supply Company, and Zagros Petrochemical Company (ZPC), among others.

Key Development

The major players dominate the production and supply of methanol across the globe. The leading players are striving to improve and hold major share of the global methanol market. Various production and supply chain strategies are adopted by companies to improve market positioning.

  • For instance, in April 2019, Celanese Corporation, one of the leading chemical producer, expands its methanol capacity at its manufacturing facility in Texas.
  • In January 2019, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC), manufacturer of chemicals and petrochemicals, signed an agreement with South Louisiana Methanol to develop methanol facility in the U.S. Through this agreement, the SABIC will reach new global markets and enable the company to access competitive feedstock.
  • In October 2019, Sabic and The Russian Direct Investment Fund, Russia’s sovereign wealth fund, to invest in ESN Group’s methanol plant development in Russia's Far East
  • In August 2018, Koch Methanol, a subsidiary of Koch Industries, buy into US$ 1.85 billion methanol production facility in the U.S. from YCI Inc. (Chinese Yuhuang Chemical Industries Inc.). The facility produced approximately 1.7 million metric tons of methanol per year.
  • In June 2015, OCI N.V., producer of chemical and natural gas-based fertilizers in the Netherlands, acquired BioMCN, producer of methanol, for US$ 16.63 million. Through this acquisition, OCI strengthen its position in the European methanol market.

Research Methodology

Coherent Market Insights followsa comprehensive research methodology focused on providing the most precise market analysis. The company leverages a data triangulation model which helps company to gauge the market dynamics and provide accurate estimates. Key components of the research methodologies followed for all our market reports include:

  • Primary Research (Trade Surveys and Experts Interviews)
  • Desk Research
  • Proprietor Data Analytics Model

In addition to this, Coherent Market Insights has access to a wide range of the regional and global reputed paid data bases, which helps the company to figure out the regional and global market trends and dynamics. The company analyses the industry from the 360 Degree Perspective i.e. from the Supply Side and Demand Side which enables us to provide granular details of the entire ecosystem for each study. Finally, a Top-Down approach and Bottom-Up approach is followed to arrive at ultimate research findings.

Data Triangulation Methodology | Coherent Market Insights

Coherent Market Insights desk research is based on a principle set of research techniques:

  • National level desk research: It Includes research analysis of regional players, regional regulatory bodies, regional trade associations, and regional organization.
  • Multinational level desk research: The research team keeps a track of multinational players, global regulatory bodies, global trade associations, and global organization.

Coherent Market Insights has a large amount of in-house repository of industry database. This is leveraged as a burner for initiating a new research study. Key secondary sources include:

  • Governmental bodies, National and international social welfare institutions, and organizations creating economic policies among others.
  • Trade association, National and international media and trade press.
  • Company Annual reports, SEC filings, Corporate Presentations, press release, news, and specification sheet of manufacturers, system integrators, brick and mortar - distributors and retailers, and third party online commerce players.
  • Scientific journals, and other technical magazines and whitepapers.

Market Analysis | Coherent Market Insights

Preliminary Data Mining

The raw data is obtained through the secondary findings, in house repositories, and trade surveys. It is then filtered to ensure that the relevant information including industry dynamics, trends, and outlook is retained for further research process.

Data Standardization

Holistic approach is used to ensure that the granular and uncommon parameters are taken into consideration to ensure accurate results. The information from the paid databases are further combined to the raw data in order to standardize it.

Coherent Statistical model

We arrive at our final research findings through simulation models. Coherent Data Analytics Model is a statistical tool that helps company to forecast market estimates. Few of the parameters considered as a part of the statistical model include:

  • Micro-economic indicators
  • Macro-economic indicators
  • Environmental indicators
  • Socio-political indicators
  • Technology indicators

Data Processing

Once the findings are derived from the statistical model, large volume of data is process to confirm accurate research results. Data analytics and processing tools are adopted to process large chunk of collected informative data. In case, a client customizes the study during the process, the research finding till then are benchmarked, and the process for new research requirement is initiated again.

Data Validation

This is the most crucial stage of the research process. Primary Interviews are conducted to validate the data and analysis. This helps in achieving the following purposes:

  • It provides first-hand information on the market dynamics, outlook, and growth parameters.
  • Industry experts validates the estimates which helps the company to cement the on-going research study.
  • Primary research includes online surveys, face-to face interviews, and telephonic interviews.

The primary research is conducted with the ecosystem players including, but not limited to:

  • Raw Material Suppliers
  • Manufacturers
  • System Integrators
  • Distributors
  • End-users