The high electrical conductivity, rising demand for high-quality materials in the aerospace, defense, and transportation industries, and wide product usage in high-end audiovisual systems are some of the factors behind the growth of the global oxygen-free copper market. Moreover, the increasing usage of electric vehicles (EVs) and growing demand for oxygen-free copper in the electronics & electrical industry are expected to benefit the market. Due to these factors, the market generated around $20.0 billion in revenue in 2020 and witnesses’ significant growth during the forecast period (2021–2030).
During the COVID-19 pandemic, economies and industries have been affected severely due to the temporary lockdowns, travel bans, and shutdown of offices and factories. Moreover, the impact of this pandemic on the market for oxygen-free copper was negative owing to the disruption of the supply chain of the end products, thus leading to the decreasing demand for it.
The oxygen-free copper market is bifurcated into oxygen-free and oxygen-free electronic, on the basis of grade. Of these, the oxygen-free category dominated the market in 2020 due to the increasing usage of oxygen-free copper wires in the automotive industry because of the rising demand for good conductivity and excellent formability of the wires used in automobiles.
The oxygen-free copper market is classified into wires, strips, busbars, rods, and others, on the basis of product. In 2020, the wires category held the largest share in the market because of the higher conductivity, great ability to transfer low-frequency sounds, and durability of the wires made from oxygen-free copper, which is why the demand for these wires is surging in the electronics & electrical and automobile industries.
Geographically, Asia-Pacific (APAC) accounted for the major share in the oxygen-free copper market in 2020, and it is expected to dominate the market in the upcoming years as well. This can be primarily aligned with the cheap labor and raw materials offered by this region, which reduces the manufacturing costs for industries, and increasing demand for EVs because of the growing focus on reducing the emission of greenhouse gases.
Players in the global oxygen-free copper industry have been involved in acquisitions to enhance their presence. For instance, in July 2019, KME SE completed the transaction with ECT-European Copper Tubes Limited and acquired Tréfimétaux SAS, thus obtaining 100% control of the company at $2.3 million.
Some of the major players operating in the market for oxygen-free copper are Mitsubishi Materials Corporation, KME Germany GmbH, Hitachi Metals Neomaterials Ltd., Libo Group, KGHM Polska Miedz SA, Metrod Holdings Berhad, Aviva Metals Inc., Farmer’s Copper Ltd., Citizen Metalloys Ltd., Hussey Copper Ltd., and Sam Dong Co. Ltd.