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The global nitric acid market size was valued at USD 22.92 billion in 2022 and is projected to grow from USD 23.73 billion in 2023 to USD 30.39 billion by 2030, exhibiting a CAGR of 3.6% during the forecast period.
Nitric acid (HNO3), also known as aqua fortis, is a colorless compound that turns yellow over a period of time due to the decomposition of nitrogen and water into oxides. The compound is highly corrosive in nature and has major applications in the production of ammonium nitrate and other chemicals for formulating fertilizers. The compound has other applications that produce chemicals such as nitrobenzene, adipic acid, and chloronitrobenzene. These chemicals are further used in various end-use industries such as plastics, automotive, and construction. The rising automotive industry in developing regions has led to high product consumption, which can be associated with population growth and consumer demand, thus supporting growth of the market. Moreover, rising demand for plastics in industrial and consumer applications further supports the market's development.
Disruption in Supply Chain due to Movement Restriction Affected Manufacturing Sector amid COVID-19
The coronavirus pandemic significantly affected many end-use industries, causing a temporary halt in manufacturing and trade activities. The pandemic also led to a decline in the economy due to receding demand and lowered manufacturing, which, in turn, led to disruption in the supply chain. The global lockdown also significantly impacted trading activities, which caused a further decline in raw material availability and the increased price of finished goods. The temporary shutdown of manufacturing units of end-use industries such as automobiles led to reduced product demand. This reduced demand affected the overall growth of the market. However, the market is expected to stabilize gradually due to rising plastic applications in the medical industry. The growing demand for PPE kits has led to high manufacturing of plastics, which propels the nitric acid market growth.
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High Demand for Lightweight Automobiles to Create Several Growth Opportunities for Market
The increasing demand from consumers for lightweight vehicles has led manufacturers turning toward innovation and advancement in the automotive industry, thus creating high consumption opportunities for HNO3 that positively affect the market. The product is used for formulating adipic acid, which is further used for making nylon. The product manufacturers are shifting to polymer composites, such as nylon, for vehicle weight reduction and improving fuel capacity. Moreover, high consumer demand for individual vehicles and an ever-increasing population have contributed significantly to the production of lightweight vehicles. Governmental regulations to curb CO2 emission have pushed chemical manufacturers to utilize advanced technologies in producing fuel-efficient and cost-effective automobile solutions. This rising trend for lightweight automobiles is propelling the market.
Increasing Demand from Various End-use Industries such as Agriculture and Construction to Aid Market Growth
Nitric acid has significant applications in the agriculture industry, where it is used for the manufacturing of fertilizers such as ammonium nitrate, potassium nitrate, calcium ammonium nitrate, and nitro phosphate. Fertilizers are used to increase crop yield to fulfill the growing food demand from the rising population. Moreover, the growing disposable income of consumers has further led to high demand for organic and quality food, thus leading to the use of bio-based fertilizers and supporting market growth.
The rising construction activities also boost the market growth as Toluene di-isocyanate (TDI) and HNO3 intermediate are used in manufacturing polyurethane foams, wood & floor coatings, and insulation materials. In addition, improving consumers' lifestyles and increasing renovation activities and new governmental infrastructure projects act as driving factors for the HNO3 market growth. Furthermore, the product used for dye manufacturing is also a driving factor for market growth. Growth in the fashion industry can be associated with high demand for dye in the textile industry.
Strict Governmental Regulations for Products Owing to their Corrosive Nature to Hinder Market Growth
Nitric acid is released from chemical manufacturing plants, exhaust fumes from vehicles, and polluted wastewater from farming areas. This environmental pollution leads to respiratory problems when inhaled. Governmental regulations for environmental protection and reduced industrial waste are restraining factors for market growth. Moreover, rising concerns over CO2 emissions from vehicles are further restraining the market.
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Fertilizers Segment to Dominate Market Due to the Growth of Agriculture Industry
Based on application, the market is segmented into fertilizers, nitrobenzene, adipic acid, toluene di-isocyanate, and others. The fertilizers segment accounted for the highest market share due to the rising agricultural activities to fulfill the growing population demand. Nitric acid is used to manufacture fertilizers such as ammonium nitrate and calcium ammonium nitrate, which provide extensive and quality crop yields. The growing need for nitrogen-based fertilizers over the years is driving market growth.
The adipic acid segment is expected to experience significant growth during the forecast period due to the increasing demand for lightweight vehicles. Adipic acid produced from nitric acid is used to manufacture nylons and other resins. Nylons polymer composites are used for automobile components manufacturing to decrease the vehicle's overall weight and make it fuel-efficient. Increasing demand for automobiles from developing regions is a driving factor toward market growth.
Asia Pacific Nitric Acid Market Size, 2022 (USD Billion)
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The market size in Asia Pacific stood at USD 11.78 billion in 2022. The growth is attributed to increasing product demand from various end-use industries, including automobile, agriculture, and construction. The economic development and growing population within India, China, and Japan create a significant demand in the agriculture industry. China dominated the Asia Pacific region due to rapid population growth, rising infrastructure projects, and increase in middle-class income causing high nitric acid consumption.
North America is estimated to have a significant share of the global market; this can be associated with rapid technological advancement and high disposable income of the region's consumers. The growing demand for lightweight and fuel-efficient automobiles and increasing new construction and renovation activities lead to market growth. This, along with the growing fashion industry in the region, is further surging the demand for nitric acid.
Europe is expected to show substantial market growth during the forecast period. This growth can be attributed to consumers' growing demand for fuel-efficient and eco-friendly lightweight automobiles. Growing awareness regarding environmental protection is the driving force for increasing fuel-efficient features and lightweight materials, such as polymer composites for making automobiles, thus creating further market opportunities. Germany is one of the major countries for automotive manufacturing, supported by high economic growth and technological advancement in providing fuel-efficient solutions for lightweight automobiles.
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Latin America and the Middle East & Africa are expected to grow gradually during the forecast period. In Latin America, Brazil is a major country for product consumption and is expected to show rapid market growth due to increasing food demand. Moreover, the usage of advanced technologies for applications in the construction industry has led toward further market development. Furthermore, the Middle East & Africa is a central mining hub; thus, raw materials are easily available at lower costs for the manufacturers in the region, thereby providing low production costs. Moreover, the growing economy within the region leads to improved lifestyles among consumers, leading to high demand for quality organic food. This demand for food is further aiding the market growth.
Leading Companies Focus on Sustainable Organic Growth to Brighten their Market Prospects
Key players operating in the industry are BASF, Nutrien, DuPont, and CF Industries Holdings, Inc. Companies profiled are involved in capacity improvement, product innovation, acquisition, mergers, and collaboration to have a competitive edge in the global market. For example, in 2018, Trammo Inc. acquired Agrium’s North Bend, HNO3 production and distribution facility. The company specializes in the manufacturing and distributing of nitrogen-based industrial and agricultural products. The facility is located on 88 acres of land with a production capacity of 75 KT annually.
An Infographic Representation of Nitric Acid Market
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The global nitric acid market research report provides a detailed analysis of the market and focuses on key aspects such as leading companies, technologies, and leading application areas. Besides this, the report offers insights into the market trends and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the aforementioned factors, the report encompasses several factors that have contributed to the growth of the market in recent years.
CAGR of 3.6% from 2023 to 2030
Value (USD Billion)
Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 22.92 billion in 2022 and is projected to reach USD 30.39 billion by 2030.
Growing at a CAGR of 3.6%, the market will exhibit significant growth during the forecast period.
The fertilizers segment dominated the market in 2022.
Increasing demand from the automotive and agricultural industries is a key factor driving the market growth.
BASF, Nutrien, DuPont, and CF Industries Holdings, Inc. are the prominent players in the global market.
Asia Pacific held the dominant share in the global market in 2022.
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