Graphite is a naturally occurring carbon available in the crystalline form. It is soft and has a very low specific gravity with high thermal and electrical stability. Due to this property, it is widely used in the manufacturing of refractories and electrodes under high-temperature steel manufacturing applications. Some of the major end-user of graphite are automobile, moderator rods, metallurgy, coatings, pencil production, and batteries.
The global graphite market was valued at US$ 21,403 million in terms of revenue in 2019 and is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 11.2% during the forecast period (2020 to 2027).
The high demand for lithium-ion batteries is a prime factor fueling the market growth of the graphite. Graphite is used in the production of refractories, lining, and foundry facing. Moreover, increasing adoption of the electric vehicle due to environmental concern coupled with the growing need for fuel-efficient vehicle is driving demand for lithium-ion batteries and graphite is used for anode materials in lithium batteries. Thus, the growing demand for lithium-ion batteries is expected to foster the market growth of the graphite.
The growing demand for fuel-efficient aircraft is projected to bring new opportunities for the market of graphite. It is used in the manufacturing of lightweight aircraft. Increasing consumption of the lightweight and fuel-efficient aircraft due to growing environmental concern is driving demand for graphite. Thus increasing production of aircraft and sale around the globe due to robust growth in the travels and tours industry is projected to foster the market growth of the graphite over the forecast period.
Low production in China due to the slowdown of the mining industry in the region is hampering market growth. This is due to the increasing implementation of the various strict environmental rules and regulations which has reduced the graphite production in the country and this is projected to hinder the market growth of the graphite in the near future.
Based on application, refractories dominated the global graphite market in 2019 with around 42% of revenue share, followed by lubricants & cubicle, and others, respectively.
The increasing disposable income of the consumers coupled with the growing consumption of nuclear energy in North America is stimulating the market growth of the graphite. Moreover, an increase in the investment by the government on defense industry coupled with the rising number of construction projects across India, Brazil, and Argentina countries is again expected to foster market growth. Also, substantial growth in the sale of passenger cars in Brazil is again expected to propel the market growth over the forecast timeframe. In addition, growing strategic partnerships and agreement among key manufacturers for market expansion and to sustain in the industry is an emerging trend. For instance, in October 2019, Battery Minerals has signed an agreement with US-based graphite processing specialist Urbix with the goal of establishing a graphite treatment joint venture in south-east Africa. The agreement emphasizes the foundation for establishing the development of an environmentally-friendly graphite purification facility in Mozambique.
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Global Graphite Market - Impact of Coronavirus (Covid-19) Pandemic
The global spread of (Covid-19) Pandemic has resulted in lockdown measures, and cease in economic activities which has severely impacted the manufacturing sector. In addition to this, inadequate supply of raw materials will lead to rapid price fluctuation. The supply chain of the country is widely impacted and most of the manufacturer were not be able to clear their old stock as the country is under strict lockdown. The demand for graphite faced limitation amidst the ongoing pandemic outbreak. Moreover, social distancing guidelines have been triggering supply chain disruption. Also, lockdown measures may result into delays in project construction. Companies are compelled to follow precautionary safety measures owing to ongoing pandemic. This has resulted into the limitation of workers on site. This factor is expected to hinder the growth of the Global Graphite Market till the period of 2021.
Few Recent Developments
In October 2017 Showa Denko announces that it has completed the acquisition of all shares in SGL GE Holding GmbH, a graphite electrode production company, and made it a wholly-owned subsidiary of SDK.
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