The polyethylene glycol market generated revenue of $4,534.8 million in 2021, and the market size will advance at a CAGR of 4.8% during the forecast period, to reach $6,909.6 million by 2030. This can be ascribed to the growing demand for polyethylene glycol in drugs and medical devices and the proliferating construction industry.
The increasing popularity of waterborne coatings and paints in the construction industry fuels the demand for polyethylene glycol across the globe, as it is a wear-resistant solvent with a low volatile organic compound (VOC) concentration. Further, it significantly improves the cement matrix’s fluidity. Housing renovation and maintenance activities have increased steadily in the past, and they are expected to further surge in the coming years owing to the increasing disposable income of people. This factor will drive the PEG demand as it is used in ceramics owing to its water-resistant and solid-polymer properties.
PEG 400 held the largest market share, of around 30%, because of its wide usage in drug production. PEG 400 is a low-molecular-weight grade of polyethylene glycol with low toxicity. Moreover, its hydrophilic nature makes it ideal for therapeutic formulations to boost the solubility and bioavailability of pharmaceuticals that are weakly soluble in water. PEG 400 is mostly used in ophthalmic solutions to get relief from burning, irritation, and discomfort due to dry eyes.
The demand for the product is high in the medical sector because of its multiple uses in medications and ointments, as a filler for tablets, and as a suppository base in ophthalmic solutions. Further, it is used to treat constipation as it causes the stools to retain water, thereby stimulating bowel movement. Moreover, developing countries, such as China and India, have increased their spending on healthcare, which will ultimately boost the market in the coming years.
Geographically, the APAC region has held the dominating share in the market over the past few years, and it would continue to dominate it in the forecast period. This is mainly attributed to the rising usage in the growing medical & pharmaceutical, automotive, and building & construction sectors. In this regard, the increasing use of water-based coatings, paints, and inks in the construction industry is likely to boost the market.
Moreover, Europe held the third-largest share in the market. The key factors driving the regional industry are its developed healthcare infrastructure and established cosmetics & personal care industry. In addition, the market witnesses different trends in Western Europe and Central and Eastern Europe. The demand for polyethylene glycol is high in Western Europe due to the presence of a large number of cosmetics & personal care companies, whereas in Central Europe, the increasing healthcare expenditure and per capita income are the key driving factors for the market.
Major players in the polyethylene glycol market include BASF SE, The Dow Chemical Company, Croda International plc, INEOS Group Ltd., India Glycols Limited, Liaoning Oxiranchem Inc., Jiangsu Haian Petroleum Chemical Factory, Clariant Ltd., Huntsman Corporation, and AkzoNobel N.V.