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US pigments demand to reach USD 3.6 billion in 2007

Published on 2003-10-22. Author : SpecialChem

 

US demand for pigments (encompassing organic, inorganic and specialty types) is forecast to rise 5.0 percent per year to $3.6 billion in 2007. Value gains will be driven by a shift in the product mix toward more expensive organic and specialty types offering acceptable environmental profiles or providing unique optical effects for heightened consumer appeal. Demand for inorganic pigments will remain relatively weak due to the continuing phase out of heavy metal types.

However, opportunities will arise for certain inorganic products, such as industrial grade ultramarine, complex inorganic and bismuth vandate types. Specialty pigments are projected to achieve the most rapid gains, increasing 6.7 percent per year to $560 million in 2007. Further penetration of metallic and pearlescent types in automotive finishes will support gains. Increased requirements for unique and novel eye-catching optical effects by manufacturers of such products as printing inks, plastics, leather and cosmetics will provide additional opportunities.

Organic pigments, the largest category, will also record above average growth. Gains will be spurred by the use of these environmentally acceptable colorants as replacements for heavy metal inorganic pigments. Increases will also be driven by greater use of high performance pigments, particularly in such applications as waterbased inks, powder coatings, and radiation-curable inks and coatings.

Growth in inorganic pigments will lag the industry average, primarily due to the continued displacement of heavy metal pigments by organic types. Nevertheless, healthy growth exists for certain inorganic pigments. Printing inks will remain the largest market for pigments, reaching $1.2 billion in 2007. This market is also expected to record the fastest growth, with annual gains of 6.0 percent. Growth will be boosted by greater use of metallic pigments in inks designed for packaging and promotional graphics; phosphorescent pigments in anti - forgery, anti-counterfeiting and other security applications; and pigments designed for use in digital ink formulations, particularly those inks designated for wide format printers.


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