Titanium dioxide is a white-colored, solid, inorganic material with high thermal stability and poor solubility. Major raw materials used in the production of titanium dioxide include mineral sources such as ilmenite and rutile. Major processes used in the manufacturing of titanium dioxide include sulfate process and chloride process.
Titanium dioxide is one of the major coating materials used to coat polycarbonate. Therefore, rising demand for lightweight vehicles coupled with increasing demand for polycarbonate has been a major factor driving demand for titanium dioxide. Demand for titanium dioxide nanoparticles has increased in the recent times. This is projected to drive growth of the titanium dioxide market during the forecast period. There has been an increase in the number of stringent regulations in the titanium dioxide market due to environmental and health hazards associated with titanium dioxide. This is one of the major factors hampering demand for titanium dioxide. Rising demand for coatings in photovoltaic modules to increase their efficiency is likely to offer high growth opportunities in the titanium dioxide market.
Based on application, demand for titanium dioxide has been segregated into four major segments: paints and coatings, plastic, paper, and others. Paints and coatings was the largest application segment for titanium dioxide in 2013 and accounted for over 50% of the market share in the same year. This trend is expected to continue during the forecast period. Plastic is anticipated to be the fastest growing application segment owing to high growth in end-user industries such as packaging and automotive. Other application segments include niche application segments such as artificial fibers and inks.
Asia Pacific dominated the global titanium dioxide market with a share of more than 40% in 2013. This trend is estimated to continue during the forecast period. Asia Pacific is projected to be the fastest growing region in the next few years due to high growth in several end-use industries in emerging economies of India and China.
The titanium dioxide market is consolidated in nature, and the top four players constituted over 50% of the global market share in 2013. Major players in the titanium dioxide market include DuPont, Cristal Global, Kronos Worldwide and Tronox Limited.