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The global ferromanganese market size was USD 70.85 billion in 2020. The impact of COVID-19 has been unprecedented and staggering, with ferromanganese witnessing a negative demand shock across all regions amid the pandemic. Based on our analysis, the global market exhibited a decline of 4.7% in 2020 as compared to the average year-on-year growth during 2017-2019. The market is projected to grow from USD 73.12 billion in 2021 to USD 96.08 billion in 2028 at a CAGR of 4% during the 2021-2028 period. The sudden rise in CAGR is attributable to this market’s demand and growth, returning to pre-pandemic levels once the pandemic is over.
Ferromanganese (FeMn) is a ferroalloy with high manganese content. Manganese ore is an important material for producing FeMn. Manganese ferroalloys consist of various grades of silicomanganese and ferromanganese, which are used to provide a key ingredient for the steelmaking industry. The growing steel production across the world is a key factor driving the market growth. The product is used as a degasser, deoxidizer, and desulphurized steel, to remove nitrogen (N) and other hazardous elements that are found during the iron melting process. It also improves mechanical properties such as abrasion resistance and hardenability from special steels. Nowadays, FeMn grades are applied in a large and growing number of industrial and consumer products.
Disruption in Manganese Ore Supply Due to COVID-19 Pandemic May Restrict Growth
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has affected many mining industries. Import and export restrictions have led to disruptions in both demand and supply of the Mn ore. Besides, nationwide lockdown measures have had a significant impact on the global pricing and supply chains. India exports a substantial amount of ferroalloys. The demand for these ferroalloys dropped due to a decline in the steel industry and a weak export market. A demand-supply mismatch in the ferroalloy industry affected global steel production.
However, with the second wave of coronavirus outbreaks in India, the steel industry may lose its imperative growth. Most of the steel plants in India were supplying liquid medical oxygen (LMO) to hospitals due to the ongoing shortage of available oxygen. For instance, in April 2021, Jindal Steel & Power Ltd (JSPL) announced that more than 500 tons of LMO stock are available at its Angul plant, India. The liquid oxygen will be provided to hospitals due to increasing cases of COVID-19.
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Duplex Process is Considered More Sustainable than the Commercial Production Process
The commercial production of FeMn is through the carbothermic smelting-reduction of manganese (Mn) ores using blast furnace (BF) and submerged arc furnace (SAF) technologies. Metallurgical coke is the main solid carbon reductant that is used in SAF technology. However, natural gas, which is rich in methane, is a more sustainable alternative reductant for ferromanganese and metal production in comparison with metallurgical coke.
The application of natural gas instead of solid carbon is a way forward in sustainable development. An integrated duplex process consists of natural gas injection into molten FeMn yielding hydrogen and carbon in which the dissolved carbon into the molten metal bath reduces magnesium oxide (MnO) from a coexisting molten slag that is produced from the smelting of Mn ore. Therefore, the duplex process is considered to be the most sustainable approach, with around 40% lower CO2 emission than SAF and around 50% less electric energy consumption.
Increasing Demand for Stainless Steel in Construction Industry to Drive Market Growth
As an excellent corrosion-resistant, toughness, and offers good strength properties, stainless steel is an important material used in the construction industry as they provide strength and support to building structures. The most prevalent use of stainless steel in construction is architectural cladding, handrails, roofing, drainage and water systems, and fixings. For structural designs, it is used for beams, columns, canopies, atriums, swimming pool sheds, outdoor staircases, and general architectural structures, mostly for aesthetic appeal. According to the World Steel Association, around 52% of steel is occupied by the construction industry.
Steel structures are significantly lighter than concrete counterparts and require less extensive foundations, thus reducing the overall environmental impact. Steel is an energy-efficient material, as heat radiates quickly from steel roofing and creates a cooler home environment in hot climate areas. In cold climates, double steel panel walls are well insulated to contain the heat.
Hence, the increasing use of stainless steel for making bridges, architectural structures, and other construction projects shall augment the ferromanganese market growth. Low-carbon FeMn is an essential ingredient for making high-strength stainless steel and low-alloy steel.
Neurotoxic Effects in Workers Exposed to Production Factory May Impact Growth
Manganese (Mn) is considered to be an essential nutrient, though Mn poisoning, caused by overexposure, may cause neurotoxicity or neurological damage in children and adults. Children are considered to be susceptible to the health impacts of manganese exposure, which reports reduced birth weight, IQ deficits, and sensory deficit. Early neurotoxic effects in workers exposed to Mn in a FeMn and SiMn production factory may pose a threat to the overall growth of the market.
High Carbon FeMn Segment to Dominate the Market
Based on the grade, the market is segmented into high carbon, medium carbon, and low carbon ferromanganese.
The high carbon ferromanganese (HcFeMn) segment is expected to dominate the market in the forthcoming years. It is the most widely used ferroalloy and has a manganese content of 70% to 80 wt% and a carbon content of 6% to 8 wt%. The majority of FeMn is sold in the high carbon form, containing carbon between 2% and 7.5%. It is generally used in the production of flat carbon steel products. During the high carbon production, parameters such as time, charge basicity, and temperature affects the Mn recovery. Normally, an increase in these parameters thus increases the carbothermal reduction reactions extent, hence increases the Mn recovery from charge.
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Iron & Steel Segment to Hold Major Share during the Forecast Period
On the basis of application, this market is segmented into iron & steel, alloy steel, and others.
Iron & steel application accounted for the highest market share in 2020 and is expected to continue its dominance up to 2028. The increasing demand for steel from construction, shipbuilding, automotive, oil & gas, and other sectors would aid growth. Manganese ore is an important material in iron and steel metallurgy, where it is used both in the ore form and as ferromanganese. The rising focus on infrastructure development due to rapid construction initiatives undertaken by the governments may propel the demand for iron and steel during the forthcoming years. Most of the steel industry and its associated metallurgy and mining industries are investing in construction projects, which shall augment the iron and steel market growth.
For instance, in March 2021, Arcelor Mittal Steel signed a Rs 50,000 crore deal with the Odisha government to set up a steel plant with a capacity of 12 million tons in the state.
Stainless steel is used in car exhaust systems and for auto parts such as seatbelt springs, hose clamps, fuel tanks, chassis, doors, and suspension. As per the International Stainless Steel Forum, the average passenger car uses around 15 kilos to 22 kilos of stainless steel. According to the Iron and Steel Institute, steel makes up around 54% of the average vehicle. Growing demand for lightweight and fuel-efficient vehicles will enhance the iron and steel market penetration in the automotive industry.
Alloy steel may witness a significant growth rate during the forecast period. They are made by combining carbon steel with one or several alloying elements, including silicon, manganese, chromium, nickel, copper, aluminum, and titanium. Alloy steel contains chromium and nickel, which is widely used in the automotive industry. The automotive industry is investing in lightweight vehicles to reduce fuel consumption and GHG, thus augmenting the demand for alloy steel in car manufacturing.
Asia Pacific Ferromanganese Market Size, 2020 (USD Billion)
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Asia Pacific dominated the ferromanganese market share in 2020 and may continue its dominance during the forecast period. The regional growth is attributed to the presence of major manganese alloy producing countries such as China, Japan, and India since the region is witnessing rapid demand from the steel industry as an alloying element. These alloying elements, such as steel, are extensively used as a construction material for the region’s developing infrastructure and rapid urbanization.
In Europe, steel utilization in the automobile industry is expected to drive market growth. The steel production in the region was facing challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic as imports were banned from China. The steel produced is suitable for the forging and pressing processes, which are extensively used in the automotive industry. As the demand for steel in the automobile industry is expanding due to the rising demand for electric vehicles, the FeMn market is also expected to witness significant growth.
North America is anticipated to exhibit a favorable growth rate, owing to product usage in the steel & stainless steel industry. Steel is used in the residential & commercial construction industry, owing to increased purchasing power and rapid industrialization. Furthermore, increased demand for stainless steel in a wide range of applications, including structural and decorative automotive components, food and beverage equipment, and consumer goods, is likely to boost the growth of this market.
Latin America is expected to expand gradually owing to the utilization of high and low carbon FeMn in foundry activities. The Middle East & Africa is predicted to expand due to the fact that South Africa is the largest manganese producer. The Kalahari Desert, which is estimated to have more than 70% of the world’s manganese deposits, is where the majority of manganese mining takes place. The regional presence of Australian mining companies like South32 and Jupiter Mines, which have mining and metal alloy smelting operations in South Africa, is expected to drive the regional market growth.
Companies are Averting towards Asia Pacific Region to Strengthen Their Market Positions
The key players in the ferromanganese market are focused on forming strategies to tackle the subsiding demand from the steel industry due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, key vendors in the market for ferromanganese are witnessing high integration across the value chain and are focusing on expansion and acquisition to gain a competitive edge in the industry. With the rise in COVID-19 cases, most of the steel-making companies are compromising steel production to supply oxygen to the government and hospitals during such an unprecedented time. For instance, in April 2021, Tata Steel increased its daily oxygen supply limit to 800 tons a day to various hospitals or healthcare centers and state governments for the treatment of COVID-19 patients.
An Infographic Representation of Ferromanganese Market
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The ferromanganese market research report provides a detailed analysis of the market and focuses on crucial aspects such as leading companies, sources, products, and applications. Also, the report offers insights into market trends and highlights vital ferromanganese industry developments. This report includes historical data & forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels and analyzes the industry's latest market dynamics and opportunities. In addition to the factors mentioned above, the report encompasses various factors contributing to the market's growth in recent years.
Value (USD Billion); Volume (Kilo Tons)
By Grade; Application; and Region
Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 70.85 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach USD 96.08 billion by 2028.
In 2020, Asia Pacific stood at USD 27.83 billion.
Registering a CAGR of 4%, the market will exhibit steady growth during the forecast period (2021-2028).
The iron and steel segment is expected to lead this market during the forecast period.
The rising demand for stainless steel from the construction industry is the key factor driving the market.
Tata Steel, Vale, Gulf Manganese Corporation Limited, and Ferroglobe are major players in the global market.
Asia Pacific dominated the market in terms of share in 2020.
The demand for alloy steel from the construction and automotive industries is expected to drive the products adoption.
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