Oilfield process chemicals are used in exploration and various extraction stages such as surfactant flooding and caustic flooding at oil and gas refineries or reservoirs. Oilfield process chemicals are used in separating gas from oil or separating oil from gas. Further Oilfield process chemicals control corrosion, fluid loss, waxes, bacteria, hydrogen sulfide and foam. It is also responsible for removal of water vapor, acid gas separation, and heavy hydrocarbon separation from the gases.
Based on the application the major product categories of oilfield process chemicals include, stimulation fluids, drilling, workover, completion, cementing, production, and enhanced oil recovery chemicals. Drilling chemicals holds the largest market share in 2013.
Based on chemical characteristics the global market for oilfield process chemicals can be broadly categories as biocides, demulsifiers, corrosion and scale inhibitors, pour point depressants, advanced polymers, surfactants and others. Demulsifier holds the largest market share in 2013. Demulsifiers are special surface active agents comprising relatively high molecular weight of polymers. When they are added to the oil, they tend to migrate to the oil–water interface and break the stabilizing film present in crude oil.
The demand for oilfield process chemicals is influenced by numerous factors. The energy requirement of developing countries such as India, China, and Brazil, are continuously increasing owing to improving living standards of consumers in these regions. Crude oil and natural gas are crucial to the energy supply chain and plays an important role in overall economy development of a region. In recent years, several developing nations are stepping towards self-reliability in oil and gas by investing in development of new onshore as well as offshore oil reserve.
Moreover production capacities of oil and gas refineries are increasing. This increase demand and production capacity of oil and gas leads to an increased market for oilfield process chemicals.
North America is the largest market for oilfield chemicals followed by Rest of the World (Middle East and Latin America) and Asia Pacific. The market for oilfield process chemicals in North America experiencing a double digit growth rate attributed to recent development of North America shale assets, oil sands, and Gulf of Mexico’s deepwater resources in this region. The oilfield process chemical is growing at moderate rate in Asia Pacific mainly led by the increase production capacity of China. Middle East and Latin America are two traditional markets for oilfield process chemicals where market is offering a lucrative growth owing to increasing production capacity of oil and gas processing plants in this region.
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The major companies operating in global oilfield process chemical market include Baker Hughes, Inc., Ecolab, Inc., Halliburton Co., Schlumberger Ltd., Ashland, Inc., Gulf Coast Chemical LLC, BASF SE., Canadian Energy Services & Technology Corp., Chemex Inc., Chevron Corp., China National Petroleum Corp., Lamberti S.p.A., Sichem LLC, SMC Technologies, Inc., Stepan Co., Syrgis Performance Chemicals, The Dow Chemical Co., The Lubrizol Corp., Unitop Chemicals Pvt. Ltd.,Weatherford International, and Well Flow International LLC