Table of Contents
This study presents historical demand data (2004, 2009 and 2014) and forecasts (2019 and 2024) by product and market for 6 world regions and 23 countries. This study also considers market environment factors, examines the industry structure, analyzes company market share, and profiles 41 global competitors.
World demand to rise 7.3% annually through 2019
Worldwide demand for permanent magnets, which totaled $11 billion in 2014, is forecast to climb 7.3 percent annually through 2019 to $16.2 billion. In volume terms, world magnet sales will expand 4 percent per year to over 1 million metric tons in 2019. Market gains will be driven by increases in durable goods output as economic conditions improve and the overall number of applications for magnets rises. The elimination of rare earth export quotas and taxes by the Chinese government in 2015 will also support growth, by helping to ensure that adequate raw material supplies are available on a global basis and by further easing pricing pressures following a period during which neodymium and samarium cobalt magnet costs unexpectedly spiked.
Developing area demand to continue leading gains
The Asia/Pacific region is by far the largest regional market for magnets, with China the largest national market by a substantial margin, due in part to the huge size of its electronics original equipment manufacturing (OEM) industry. In a continuation of a long term trend, magnet sales growth in the Africa/Mideast region, developing parts of Asia, Eastern Europe, and Central and South America will outpace demand in Japan, South Korea, the US, and Western Europe through 2019. China alone will account for onehalf of all additional magnet sales on a worldwide basis.
Like demand, magnet manufacturing activity varies considerably from region to region. China is by far the largest single producer of magnetic materials, responsible for 58 percent of global output in 2014. Although the nation manufactures all of the major product types in substantial quantities, neodymium and samarium cobalt magnets account for above average shares of its total industry output, reflecting the easy access to and favorable prices for rare earths that Chinese firms have historically enjoyed.
Neodymium magnets to post fastest market gains
Neodymium, the strongest magnet type currently available, dominates dollar sales, while ferrite magnets, the least expensive on a per kilogram basis, account for the largest share of demand in metric tons. Neodymium magnets are expected to post the fastest market gains of any product type through 2019, driven by the superior performance they can provide. In large markets such as electronics and motor vehicles, ongoing efforts to minimize product size and/or weight while adding new features will also contribute to demand increases.
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