Asia-Pacifics Share of Lubes Grows


The Asia-Pacific region accounted for 43 percent of global lubricant demand in 2013, Kline & Co. consultancy concluded in a recent webinar. Countries within the region consumed nearly 17 million metric tons of finished lubes, compared to worldwide demand of 39.5 million tons, process oils included.

Kline projects global lubricant demand to reach 45.5 million tons by 2023, with Asia-Pacifics growth leading the way with a compound annual growth rate of nearly 2.5 percent from 2013 to 2023.

According to Kline, the United States remained the largest lubricant consuming country market in 2013, followed by China, India, Russia and Japan. The top 13 included South Korea in eighth place, Indonesia in ninth and Thailand as the thirteenth-largest market.

At some point – were figuring maybe in the 2017 to 2018 timeframe – China will surpass the United States to become the largest lubricant-consuming country market, George Morvey, industry manager for Klines energy practice, said during a web presentation Oct. 15. Whether it happens at that time or 2018-2019, its bound to happen.

Kline forecasts passenger car motor oil demand to grow from 7 million tons in 2013 to more than 8 million tons by 2023. Globally, an expanding consumer vehicle parc and robust new sales in developed and developing countries will drive demand for higher quality factory and service fill passenger car motor oils, Kline suggests.

The company estimates new consumer vehicle sales in China will grow from more than 20 million units in 2013 to nearly 35 million units in 2019. The countrys total consumer vehicle parc is projected to rise from just over 80 million units in 2013 to more than 180 million units in 2019.

Even if the countrys 2019 vehicle par ends up shy of projections, China is a huge market, and its very important to make sure you have products in distribution in that country market, Morvey said. In some cases, its first time ownership, so if you can develop that relationship with the consumer for the first time, you should have that for life.

Indias new vehicles sales will grow from just under 3 million units to nearly 7 million units by 2019, Kline projected, with the total vehicle parc expected to grow from just under 25 million units to nearly 45 million units by 2019. India has a middle class that expands buying power, he said. People will be buying more cars, and its vehicle parc should increase.

Kline estimated 9 million metric tons of heavy-duty motor oil demand globally for 2013, and projects it will increase to about 10.5 million tons by 2023, with SAE 15W-40 accounting for 50 percent of the total market. Monograde HDMO usage remains high in developing country markets, Morvey said, limiting opportunities. In Indonesia for example, Kline found monogrades accounted for well over 50 percent of HDMO demand, and was expected to still account for more than 50 percent in 2023.

Shell remained the top global supplier of finished lubricants in 2013, Kline found, followed by ExxonMobil, BP, Total, Chevron, PetroChina, Sinopec, Idemitsu, Lukoil and Fuchs. The global top 10 accounted for more than half of total lubricants supply in 2013. Ranking 11th through 20thwere JX Holdings, Petronas, Valvoline, Gulf Oil International, Pertamina, Gazpromneft, Phillips 66, Indian Oil, Hindustan Petroleum and Petrobras. The top 20 global suppliers together accounted for nearly two-thirds of total lubricants supply in 2013.

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