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Photoresist chemicals are light-sensitive chemicals used in various industrial processes such as making of printed circuit boards (PCB), copper roller making for packaging and textile industries. These chemicals are available in dry films and liquid forms and are essential for manufacturing semiconductors and micro-electro-mechanical systems. Photoresist chemicals change their chemical structure when exposed to UV light and are therefore, widely used for photoengraving and photolithography to form a patterned coating on a surface.  

Market Outlook

  • Growing electronics & semiconductor industry is expected to propel demand for photoresist chemicals. For instance, according to a report by Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA), July 2018, worldwide sales of semiconductors reached to US$ 38.7 billion in May 2018, recording a growth of around 21.0% in comparison with US$ 32.0 billion accounted in May 2017.
  • However, stringent regulations associated with usage of photoresist chemicals due to environmental and occupational health risks are expected to hamper the market growth.
  • Based on application, photoresist chemicals market is segmented into microelectronics, fabrication of printed circuit boards, sand carving, and others. In microelectronics, photoresist chemicals are generally applied to silicon-integrated circuits/silicon wafers. Other applications of photoresist in patterning and etching of substrates include, glass printed circuit boards, MEMS, and other micropatterning
  • Photoresist chemicals are used in holography, biomedical engineering, and micromachining. Technological innovations in the field on flat-panel displays (lithography systems such as advent of LCDs and OLEDs, enabling higher definition and clear images are favorable factors to upsurge photoresist chemicals demand during the forecast period.

Key Players

Key players operating in the global photoresist chemicals market include, Hubbard-Hall Inc., FUJIFILM Holdings America Corporation, DuPont, The Dow Chemical Company, and Mitsui Chemicals America, Inc. 

Market Taxonomy

On the basis of product type, the global photoresist chemicals market is segmented into:

  • Positive Photoresist
  • Negative Photoresist

On the basis of application, the global photoresist chemicals market is segmented into:

  • Microelectronics
  • Fabrication of Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs)
  • Sand Carving
  • Others (Semiconductors and patterning & etching of substrates)

On the basis of region, the global photoresist chemicals market is segmented into:

  • North America
    • U.S.
    • Canada
  • Europe
    • U.K.
    • Germany
    • Italy
    • France
    • Russia
    • Spain
    • Rest of Europe
  • Asia Pacific
    • China
    • India
    • Japan
    • ASEAN
    • Australia
    • South Korea
    • Rest of Asia Pacific
  • Latin America
    • Brazil
    • Mexico
    • Argentina
    • Rest of Latin America
  • Middle East
    • GCC
    • Israel
    • Rest of Middle East
  • Africa
    • North Africa
    • Central Africa
    • South Africa

Key Developments:

  • In October 2019, according to the Japan Times, TOK, Shin-Etsu Chemicals and JSR Corporation held 90% share in the extreme ultraviolet photo resistant market as of 2018, which is further used for manufacturing 7 nanometers chips used in consumer electronics. Above mentioned Japanese companies have developed innovative technologies to develop photo resistors and is currently driving up the demand for photoresist chemicals in Japan.
  • In December 2019, FUJIFILM Corporation, a photo resist chemical manufacturer announced the acquisition of Hitachi’s imaging business to expand its diagnostics imaging in the healthcare segment.  
  • In July 2019, Japan decided to stop the supply of essential chemicals used in electronics such as photoresist chemicals used for manufacturing electronic chips to South Korea as these chemicals can also be used for defense application and cause national threat to the Japanese government. This will provide an opportunity for the South Korean photoresist chemicals manufacturers to sell the chemicals at a high profit margins in South Korea.
  • In March 2015, a research paper written by Nanotechnology Group, ETH Zurich studied the use of extreme ultraviolet lithography for patterning the integrated circuits. The researchers also found that inorganic chemical based photoresists have better performance than organic photoresists. Increasing research activities in the field of photoresist chemicals is expected to drive the demand for inorganic photoresist chemicals.
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