Metal finishing chemicals are used to clean, plate and etch metallic surfaces which enhance their physical appearance and characteristics. Metal finishing chemicals help to alter/control various surface properties such as corrosion resistance, tarnish resistance, electrical and wear resistance; reflectivity and appearance, hardness, chemical resistance and electrical conductivity, among others. Electrolytic plating, chemical conversion, electroless plating and electrochemical conversion are the majorly used processes in metal finishing chemical industries. De-greasing, pickling, etching, polishing and cleaning are the supporting processes which are used along with above mentioned processes. Materials preferred for metal finishing are chlorinated and oxygenated solvents, surfactants, solutions of metal salts and acid and bases among others. Electroplating chemical process dominated the metal finishing chemicals market followed by electroless plating and galvanization process. Metallic coatings processes such as vapor deposition and thermal spray coatings are also likely to gain more importance in upcoming years.
The market for metal finishing chemicals was mainly driven by huge demand from electrical & electronics and increasing demand from automotive industry. Metal finishing chemicals are used in finishing of printed circuit boards along with other electronic devices. Metal finishing chemicals are used for etching and cleaning of these surfaces. Metal finishing chemicals are used for cleaning and degreasing metal substrates such as steel, aluminum and nickel among others. In addition, metal finishing chemicals have huge demand from automotive and aerospace equipments. Aerospace is anticipated to be fastest growing industry for metal finishing chemicals market. The demand in aerospace industry is huge owing increased demand from cleaning and degreasing of equipments. Other end-user industries where metal finishing chemicals used are industrial machinery and transportation equipment. However, environmental and workplace regulations associated with metal finishing chemicals, which is considered as one of the most toxic industry are likely to hinder the growth of the market in upcoming years.
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In terms of demand, North America was the leading region in metal finishing chemicals market. The U.S. had the largest demand for metal finishing chemicals owing to huge demand from aerospace industry coupled with huge demand from electrical & electronics industry. However, stringent regulations in U.S. related to metal finishing industry, due to one of the highly chemical sensitive industry is likely to be major restraint for the metal finishing chemicals market in this region. North America was followed by Europe. The demand in Europe is huge owing to increasing demand from manufacturing and automotive industry. Germany and the UK had the largest demand for metal finishing chemicals in Europe and are likely to follow similar trend over forecast period. Asia Pacific region is one of the fastest growing markets for metal finishing chemicals market. The demand for metal finishing chemicals is huge from countries like Japan, China and India. China and Japan were the leading consumers of metal finishing chemicals in Asia Pacific region. India is anticipated to be the fastest growing market for metal finishing chemicals in Asia Pacific region. The Rest of the World market is anticipated to have stable demand for metal finishing chemicals market in next few years. Latin America is likely to be one of the largest markets for metal finishing chemicals in the Rest of the World owing to huge demand from manufacturing activities from developing countries.
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The market for metal finishing chemicals is fragmented. However, it is dominated by large manufacturers with global presence. Some of the key manufacturers in the metal finishing chemicals are Advanced Chemical Company, Atotech Deutschland GmbH, Coral Chemical Co., C. Uyemura & Co. Ltd., Lonza Group, McGean Specialty Chemicals Group and Quaker Chemicals Corp. among others.