Global Market Outlook on Lime 

  • APAC would continue to dominate the market in terms of production volume as well as growth prospects until 2020
  • Market consolidation will continue to increase in North America and Europe in the coming years as producers continue to optimize operating costs as well as expand geographical footprint

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Global Lime Market Maturity

  • The key trend, which is expected to influence the lime market maturity would be the suppliers’ capabilities to improve operating efficiencies of their lime kilns as well as offer value added solutions and services, technical support and innovative lime products customized for specific applications like FGD, Food processing, Waste and Water treatment and Soil treatment.

Market Overview

  • Growth in steel production levels is expected to be the key driver of rising demand for lime in metallurgical applications

  • Increasing use of lime for the removal of air pollutants at coal-fired power plants is anticipated to boost the growth of the global lime market

  • The construction sector is the largest user of hydrated lime, where it is used to produce mortar, plasters, stucco, masonry and Portland cement, and in asphalt as an anti-stripping agent

Market Size and Trend

  • Until 2018, the value of lime sales is anticipated to grow by 4-5 percent annually, mainly driven by demand from environmental applications of lime for ex. Waste water treatment, flue gas desulfurization in coal fired power plants and sludge treatment
  • Hydrated lime suppliers will benefit from expansion in the construction sector, while rising production of steel and other manufactured goods will bolster the demand for refractory lime

  • Major industries consuming lime are steelmaking, flue gas treatment, construction, building, and chemical

Market Analysis - Demand and Supply

  • Generally, the lime market is nearly-balanced in terms of demand and supply, as majority of the demand is met by the regional supply base. Also, as storage of lime for long time periods is difficult and costly, lime production is generally kept in line with the expected short-medium term demand 

  • In 2015, the global lime market witnessed slight oversupply as the demand from the metallurgy sector declined. Metallurgy accounts for the largest share of lime consumption

  • Steady growth of the construction sector and gradual recovery of the global steel industry is expected to restore the demand supply balance during next 2–3 years

  • Lime is not traded across countries on a significant scale. As lime is highly reactive in the presence of moisture, it is required to be transported in pneumatic trucks or tank wagons, so as to avoid exposure to moisture and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Hence, the transportation cost lime is usually higher as compared to other mineral commodities, thus deterring cross border trade

  • The global trade volume of lime accounts for about 4-5 percent of the total demand for the commodity