Lubricating Oils and Greases: A Global Strategic Business Report
San Jose, California (PRWEB) March 30, 2012
Follow us on LinkedIn – Lubricating oils and greases are omnipresent products that find widespread use in a wide range of applications spanning the length and breadth of myriad industries worldwide. Given that modern life crucially depends on fuel-driven machines and technology systems, market for lubricants and greases, which are defined as machine fluids that enable smooth functioning of machines, is forecast to continue to witness steady growth. Economic, regulatory, and political issues are rewriting the demand and supply dynamics of the worldwide lubricating oils and greases market. Though volume growth is forecast to be slower, modernization in manufacturing machinery and increase in motor vehicle fleet will call for superior quality lubricants. For instance, as the automotive industry continues to be overturned by issues pertaining to energy conservation, efficiency and emission regulations, consumer preferences are expected to shift towards lower viscosity grade, fuel-efficient oils. Also, high quality lubricants are long lasting and are capable of extending oil drain intervals, thereby reducing the overall lubricant need thus explaining the deceleration in volume growth. As a result, commodity lubricants will witness steady replacement by new generation lubricants and robust opportunities in dollar growth are forecast to continue into the foreseeable future.
The geography of the markets as well as the demographics of several regions, when coupled together, will keep the oils burning. While developed markets have moved into the maturity stage, developing markets project a bright future outlook for lubricants. Against a fiscal climate strained by deficit where consumers turn frugal, cost conscious, and demand cost-performance benefits, the clout exerted by developed countries as major lucrative importers is steadily weakening, pushing export oriented economies like China to depend heavily upon growth in domestic consumer spending. Also, with debt laden developed US and European economies slowing down, the strengthening of Asian currencies against the Dollar and Euro is straining Asian producers’ competitive advantage in the international market.
While recovering auto production, new vehicle sales, increasing vehicle population, increasing average operating life of vehicles, rise in the number of vehicle miles travelled, and increased focus and spending on maintenance are driving demand for automotive lubricants, increasing activity in the worldwide manufacturing industry is benefiting the market for industrial lubes including hydraulic fluids and process oils. With economic health now aligning with environmental health, the lubricants and greases market will witness a distinct focus among both, manufacturers and end-users on reducing the environmental footprint of lubricant consumption.
Technology development in the industry in the medium-to-long term will be driven by the concept of “sustainability” to minimize pollution and maximize resource utilization. In this regard, biolubricants with biodegradable properties will grow in demand and popularity. Biolubricants has been gaining in significance supported by research studies that indicate their ability to reduce emission of greenhouse gases by more than half, and also reduce two-thirds of energy consumption as compared to petroleum-derived lubricants. Coupled with the fact that 30% of conventional lubes accumulate in the environment as residual wastes, biolubricants are gradually replacing non-biodegradable fossil-based lubricants. Industrial applications of biolubricants are still in nascent stage with tremendous scope for expansion. Growth in biolubricants will be driven by stricter environmental regulations for conventional lubes, increased injection of funds into tapping the planet's natural assets for sustainable development and increased R&D efforts in innovating new formulation methods.
Innovation is also important as companies will need to keep pace with technology developments in the equipment/machinery industry. With efficiency and productivity being primary goals of the manufacturing and industrial sector, several industrial processes and associated equipment are currently being manufactured to allow for faster processing and thus are designed to operate at higher temperatures. This thereby requires lube manufacturers to manufacture more thermally, oxidatively stable and less volatile fluids for use in these machines. Also, stringent test protocols for assessing environmental acceptability of the fluids creates challenges for manufacturers to develop fluids that conform to legislated parameters pertaining to toxicity, biodegradability, bioaccumulation, lower emissions and recyclelability. In the auto industry, launching products targeting the new class of flexible fuel vehicles that run on ethanol and diesel, which features low sulphur content, 5-10% of biodiesel in the blend, represents a new window of opportunity. Lubricant manufacturers are also developing multifunctional lubricants, which are particularly preferred in the metalworking sector to suit various metals and working conditions.
Lubricant oils are heavily dependent upon end-use industries like automotive, construction, transportation, and industrial machinery. While key end-use markets are recovering the world over from the 2007-2009 recession, the industries in Europe are running into fresh set of challenges. EUs industrial sentiment currently remains torn between optimism and fear, given the mixed signals emanating from the volatile manufacturing data in Spain and Italy and the encouraging industrial performance in Germany. Bearish market sentiments indicate that an escalation in the euro crisis could precipitate a slowdown in the market. Also the shift from fiscal government stimulus to anti-crisis austerity and spending cuts as a measure to tame the towering public debt scenario could impact capital expenditure in manufacturing industries in debt affected economies by limiting borrowing and reducing investments in capital goods. Reduced ability of the government to fund capital expenditure can impact both domestic and foreign financed projects thus indirectly influencing spending on machinery solutions including lubricants and greases.
However, despite the challenges and uncertainties, over the continued economic stability in Europe, most market indicators for the immediate-term future feature a largely positive outlook for the manufacturing industry in the year 2012. Manufacturing production which continued to recover from 2010 through 2011 is expected to continue into the year 2012. For instance, in Germany industrial/manufacturing output is holding well as indicated by the country’s yet strong export market, a key reason for the country’s superior handling of its debt crisis in comparison with Greece, Portugal, Spain and Italy. Also, capital goods orders from developing countries have been standing up to the pressure providing a glimmer of hope for steady long-term growth in the region. In the domestic automobile industry, immediate production cutbacks are not seen as likely, given the yet patchy slowdown in auto sales. Production continues to hold up even in the face of weaker than expected growth and optimism remains with no downgrade in the outlook for auto production. Against a backdrop of all of these factors, demand for lubricating oils and greases is expected to hold up in the year 2012.
As stated by the new market research report on Lubricating Oils and Greases, Asia Pacific represents the largest market worldwide. The region also represents the fastest growing trailing a projected CAGR of 3.8% over the analysis period. Growth in this region is triggered by mass exodus of manufacturing, and production bases to low cost Asian countries, and continuous industrialization in regional powerhouses such as China and India.
Major players in the marketplace include BP Lubricants USA Inc., Castrol BP Petco Ltd., Chevron Corporation, ConocoPhillips Lubricants, Exxon Mobil Corporation, Esso S.A.F., Fuchs Petrolub AG, Idemitsu Kosan Co. Ltd., Indian Oil Corporation Ltd., LUKOIL Oil Company, JX Nippon Oil & Energy Corporation, Petróleos de Venezuela S.A., PT PERTAMINA (PERSERO), PT Wiraswasta Gemilang, Repsol YPF SA, Shell, Sinopec Corporation, Total S.A., and Valvoline.
The research report titled “Lubricating Oils and Greases: A Global Strategic Business Report” announced by Global Industry Analysts, Inc., provides a comprehensive review of market trends and issues, consumption patterns, and recent industry activity. The study also provides market estimates & projections in volume sales for all major geographic regions such as United States, Canada, Japan, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East, and Latin America by the following product groups/segments Automotive Lubricants (Engine Oils, and Transmission & Hydraulic Fluids); Industrial Lubricants (General Industrial Oils, Industrial Engine Oils, Marine Lubricants, Metal Working Oils, and Process Oils); and Greases.
For more details about this comprehensive market research report, please visit –
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