Soda ash is an essential raw material used in the manufacture of
glass, chemicals, detergents, and various industrial products. It is an
anhydrous white powder or granular material that is available in three grades:
light, medium, and dense. These grades offer similar chemical properties, but
differ in physical characteristics such as bulk density and particle size and
shape (which affect the flow characteristics and angle of repose). Soda ash is synthetically
produced from salt and limestone through the Solvay process. It is also
extracted from ashes of many plants growing in sodium-rich soils in the Middle
East, Spain, and Scotland.
Soda ash is extensively used in the manufacture of glass. As per
the U.S. Geological Survey, around 30% of soda ash shipments in the U.S. are
utilized for glass production. Additionally, the chemical processing industry
accounts for significant demand for soda ash. Soda ash is used in the manufacture
of sodium silicate, chrome chemicals, photographic chemicals, sodium
bicarbonate, etc. Furthermore, soda ash acts as an organic builder in soaps
& detergents formulations. Other applications of soda ash include water
treatment, wherein it controls pH levels, thus softening water. Furthermore,
soda ash is widely used in papermaking. Glass is expected to be the largest
application sector in the soda ash market during the forecast period with the
flat glass sub-segment dominating the glass sector.
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Growth in the household detergents market in Europe is likely to
drive the soda ash market in the near future. Additionally, increasing demand
for soda ash in the construction & building materials industry coupled with
rising number of water treatment projects is anticipated to fuel the demand for
soda ash during the forecast period. However, competition from substitute
products such as caustic soda and sodium silicate may act as a restraining
factor in the expansion of the sodium silicate market. Rising necessity of
Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) in regions such as Europe due to energy
conservation policies, high fuel prices, and technological development may open
avenues for the growth of the soda ash market in the near future.
Value chain of the soda ash market encompasses raw materials
used in the production of soda ash, manufacturers of soda ash, distribution
channels, applications, and end-user industries that directly or indirectly
consume soda ash.
Asia Pacific was the largest market for soda ash in 2014 owing
to the presence of a significant number of manufacturers in the region,
particularly in China. The U.S. ranks second in the production of soda ash.
However, China largely produces soda ash through the Solvay process, which is
energy intensive, whereas soda ash manufactured in the U.S. is in its natural
form. Consequently, soda ash produced in the U.S. can be exported globally with
competitive pricing. Furthermore, Asia Pacific is projected to witness the
fastest growth over the next few years due to increasing usage of soda ash in
the existing large-scale textile and pulp & paper industries, particularly
in China and India. Europe follows Asia Pacific. Soda ash is increasingly used
in water treatment and other miscellaneous applications such as flue gas
desulfurization in the region.
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Companies such as General Chemical Industrial Products Inc
Solvay Chemicals, OCI Chemical, Tata Chemicals Limited, Nirma
Limited, GHCL Limited, FMC Corporation, Ciech SA, Soda Sanayii A.?., DCW
Limited, and Oriental Chemical Industries are major players in the soda ash
The report sheds light on various aspects and answers pertinent
questions on the market. Some of the important ones are:
1. What can be the best investment choices for venturing into
new product and service lines?
2. What value propositions should businesses aim at while making
new research and development funding?
3. Which regulations will be most helpful for stakeholders to
boost their supply chain network?
4. Which regions might see the demand maturing in certain
segments in near future?
5. What are the some of the best cost optimization strategies
with vendors that some well-entrenched players have gained success with?
6. Which are the key perspectives that the C-suite are
leveraging to move businesses to new growth trajectory?
7. Which government regulations might challenge the status of
key regional markets?
8. How will the emerging political and economic scenario affect
opportunities in key growth areas?
9. What are some of the value-grab opportunities in various
10. What will be the barrier to entry for new players in the