Methyl Formate Market: A Chemical Intermediate

  • Methyl formate is a clear, highly flammable, low surface tension, and highly volatile liquid. It dissolves at a slow rate in water. Methyl formate is extensively used as a chemical intermediate in pharmaceuticals and as binder in the foundry industry owing to its high volatility.
  • It is commonly produced in labs by acid-catalyzed esterification of formic acid and methanol. Industrially, it is manufactured by dehydrogenation of methanol and carbonylation of methanol.
  • Methyl formate is extensively employed as curing agent for resin-based foundry molds and as blowing agent for polyurethane foams. Additionally, it is used in in the synthesis of fine chemicals and insect control agents.
  • Properties of methyl formate such as high vapor pressure and low surface tension make it an ideal material for quick-drying finishes and blowing agent for the production of polyurethane foams

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Key Drivers of Methyl Formate Market

  • Growth in urbanization has led to rise in investment in infrastructure in developing countries such as China and India. This, in turn, is anticipated to fuel construction activities in these countries. Methyl formate has zero ozone depletion potential and zero global warming potential. Therefore, it is often used in formulation of polyurethane foams. Ability of polyurethane foams to provide insulation in building and construction materials, in order to reduce a building’s energy use and control indoor temperature, is expected to boost the demand for polyurethane foams in the near future. This, in turn, is projected to drive the demand for methyl formate in the near future.

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Asia Pacific Expected Hold Prominent Share of Global Methyl Formate Market

  • In terms of region, the global methyl formate market can be divided into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa
  • Growth in FDI investments and increase in government initiatives to boost housing facilities across Asia Pacific are projected to drive the building & construction sector in the region. For instance, through the ‘Housing for All’ initiative, the Government of India aims to build 20 million affordable houses for the urban poor by 2022. The initiative is expected to significantly fuel residential construction across the country. This is anticipated to drive the demand for polyurethane foams in the region, thereby fueling the methyl formate market.
  • According to a report published by the Economic Research Service on behalf of the United States Department of Agriculture in 2014, the world’s population is projected to rise from 7 billion in 2014 to approximately 9 billion by 2050. Growth in population and increase in disposable income of the people across the globe are expected to drive the demand for plant-based diet. This is anticipated to drive the demand for fumigants as well as insecticides, thereby augmenting the global methyl formate market. 
  • The methyl formate market in Europe and North America is more mature than that in Latin America and Middle East & Africa. Producers operating in the methyl formate market in Europe and North America are primarily engaged in enhancing the quality of their existing product lines and increasing their market share through mergers and acquisitions.