Formaldehyde is the largest consumer of methanol, accounting for 25.1% of the 98.3 million metric tons of methanol produced in 2019. Formaldehyde is a highly versatile chemical intermediate used in the production of many strategically important products. These include: adhesives for wood panels, laminates, and furniture frames; polyurethane foams for building and construction, automobiles and furniture; thermoplastics for high-performance engineering applications and household electronics; polyols for surface coatings and textiles; and an additive to fertilizers. Formaldehyde is an essential component of the modern petrochemical industry.

 

Formaldehyde Derivative End Use Applications
Urea Formaldehyde Resins (UF) Adhesives and Coatings for Wood Products
Phenol Formaldehyde Resins (PF) Adhesives and Coatings for Wood Products
Melamine Formaldehyde Resin (MF) Adhesives and Coatings for Wood Products
Polyoxymethylene/Polyacetal (POM) Automotive parts, household/electronic appliances, building products
Polyols
     Pentaerythritol Paint resins, synthetic lubricants, explosive precursor
     Trimethylolpropane (TMP) Paint resins, synthetic lubricants, explosive precursor
     Neopentylglycol (NPG) Urethane coatings, polyurethane foams
     Trimethylolethane (TME) Coatings
1,4 Butanediol (1,4 BDO) THF, g-butylrolactone, PBT, Lycra™
Methylenebis (4-phenyl isocyanate)/Methyl diisocyanate (MDI) Rigid urethane foams, elastic fibers, elastomers
Paraformaldehyde Resin manufacture
Hexamethylenetetramine (Hexamine or HDTA) Thermosetting catalyst for phenolic resins, RDX (cyclonite) high explosives, molding compounds, rubber vulcanization accelerators, animal medication
Others
     Glyphosate Herbicide (e.g. Roundup™)
     Extraction Solvent Isoprene Rubbers
     Pyridines Agricultural chemicals, herbicides
     Chelating Agents (EDTA and NTA) Industrial & household cleaners, water treatment
     Acrylics Plastics
     Nitroparaffin Plasticizers
     UF based controlled release fertilizers, UF Concentrates Fertilizers
     Formaldehyde-alcohol solutions UF and MF resins
     Tetraoxane Textile treatment
     Dimethylol dihydroxyethylene Permanent Press textiles
     Formaldehyde and Other Derivatives Fungicides
Embalming fluids
Silage preservatives
Disinfectants
Corrosion inhibitor
Hydrogen sulfide scavenger
Biocide in oil production operations (drilling, waterflood, and enhanced oil recovery)

 

Formaldehyde Supply
Formaldehyde Demand

Growth in formaldehyde demand typically follows GDP growth on a global basis. Asia accounts for more than half of world demand and China more than half of Asian demand. Global growth in formaldehyde demand will predominantly be in Asia but modest growth will also be seen in North America and Europe, servicing local consumers. 

MMSA maintains a detailed global database of formaldehyde producers and consumers. It has provided one-off, proprietary studies into this global industry and specific companies operating within it. MMSA can assist companies or financial institutions with existing investments or looking to make future investments in this industry. MMSA can provide an efficient and objective assessment of the outlook for that investment in several forms: 

 Market (Supply and Demand) Analysis 

  • Price Outlook / Margin Analysis 
  • Technology Review 
  • Valuation 
  • Viability, Pre-Feasibility Assessments