Surfactant EOR Market Overview
The Surfactant EOR Market size is estimated to reach US$82.6 million by 2027, after growing at a CAGR of 3.2% during the forecast period 2022-2027. Surfactant enhanced oil recovery is utilized for wettability alteration of porous rocks permitting water to flow through them faster displacing more oil. The growing oil & gas sector is driving the surfactant EOR market growth, for increasing oil production by raising oil mobility and permitting good displacement of the oil by the administered water, by utilizing the surfactant flooding technique. Moreover, the increasing requirement for bio-based and petro-based surfactants in the onshore and offshore fields, to increase the recovery of hydrocarbons, as a mobilizing agent is anticipated to upsurge the growth of the surfactant EOR industry during the forecast period. The global economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a huge drop in surfactant-producing industries all across the world, which had a significant impact on the growth of the surfactant EOR market size.
Surfactant EOR Market Report Coverage
The “Surfactant EOR Market Report – Forecast (2022 - 2027)” by IndustryARC, covers an in-depth analysis of the following segments in the surfactant EOR industry.
By Origin: Surfactants and Biosurfactants.
By Technique: Polymer Flooding (PF), Surfactant-Polymer (SP) Flooding, Alkali-Surfactant-Polymer (ASP) Flooding, Alkali-Co-solvent-Polymer (ACP) Flooding and Low-Tension Gas Flooding (LTG).
By Type: Alkylpolyglycosides, Coconut Diethanolamide, Di-Tridecyl Sulfosuccinic Acid Ester and Alkylpropoxy Sulfate Sodium Salts.
By Surfactant Type: Anionic surfactants, Cationic surfactants and Non-ionic surfactants.
By Category: Petro-based and Bio-based.
By Application: Onshore and Offshore.
By Geography: North America (the USA, Canada and Mexico), Europe (UK, Germany, France, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Belgium and the Rest of Europe), Asia-Pacific (China, Japan, India, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand, Indonesia, Taiwan, Malaysia and Rest of APAC), South America (Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Chile and Rest of South America), Rest of the World (the Middle East and Africa).
- The North-America region dominates the Surfactant EOR market owing to the increasing investments in the oil & gas sector.
- Rapidly rising demand for Surfactant EOR in the oil & gas industry for increasing oil production by reducing interfacial tension and raising oil mobility has driven the growth of the surfactant EOR market.
- The rising importance of bio-based surfactants has been a critical factor driving the growth of the surfactant EOR market in the upcoming years.
- However, the high adoption of renewable energy can hinder the growth of the surfactant EOR market.
Figure: Surfactant EOR Market Revenue Share by Geography, 2021 (%)
Surfactant EOR Market Segment Analysis – by Category
The petro-based segment held the largest Surfactant EOR market share in 2021 and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 3.5% during the forecast period 2022-2027. The petroleum industry utilizes large volumes of petro-based synthetic surfactants to increase the availability or recovery of hydrocarbons and for several purposes such as cleaning, extraction, treatment and transportation, as a mobilizing agent. Petro-based synthetically manufactured surfactants are extensively utilized in the surfactant EOR market as compared to bio-based surfactants due to their relatively high cost and also, the bio-based surfactants are weaker than petro-based synthetic surfactants. Thus, all these exhibit characteristics of petro-based surfactants make it a preferred choice over the bio-based surfactants for EOR that are driving its segmental growth.
Surfactant EOR Market Segment Analysis – by Application
The onshore segment held the largest Surfactant EOR Market share in 2021 and is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 3.8% during the forecast period 2022-2027. Surfactants are extensively used to recover a large quantity of oil & gas from onshore reservoirs by utilizing the surfactant flooding technique as compared to offshore reserves. Therefore, onshore is the biggest application in the Surfactants enhanced oil recovery market. In onshore drilling facilities, the wells are grouped together in a field and are connected by carbon steel tubes which deliver the oil and gas to a manufacturing and processing facility. Furthermore, onshore production companies are able to turn on and off rigs with more ease than offshore rigs. The oil and gas industry is growing, for instance, in 2022, India's top oil and gas producer ONGC invested Rs31,000 crore (US$3,898 million), in exploring the Indian sedimentary basin for fuel reserves, over the next three years. Thus, with the rising oil & gas sector, the onshore segment is growing, which is driving the surfactant EOR market growth over the forecast period.
Surfactant EOR Market Segment Analysis – by Geography
North-America region held the significant Surfactant EOR market share in 2021 up to 24%, due to the rising oil and gas exploration and production activities. The rising growth of the oil & gas industry has uplifted the growth of the surfactant EOR market since it is extensively being utilized for wettability alteration of porous rocks in industries such as exploration and development, chemical and refining. Moreover, the oil & gas industry is growing, for instance, according to the International Trade Administration, in Mexico, from 2021 to 2024, companies such as ExxonMobil and Fieldwood will invest US$18 billion, in order to purchase drilling, exploration and seismic services and extraction equipment, involving platforms and related services for 794 wells. Moreover, according to the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP), in 2021, capital investments were about US$3.36 billion higher as projected and there was a 14% increase in upstream oil & gas investment, rising up to US$27.3 billion, in 2021, in comparison to US$24 billion in 2020. Thus, the increasing investments in the oil & gas industry are proving to be a market booster for the surfactant EOR market size in this region.
Surfactant EOR Market Drivers
Growing Oil and Gas Industry:
The oil and gas industry uses surfactant-enhanced oil recovery for increasing oil production by reducing interfacial tension, for wettability alteration of porous, rocks and raising oil mobility, therefore permitting good displacement of the oil by the administered water, by using the surfactant flooding technique. The oil & gas industry is growing, for instance, according to the Indian Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF), in November 2021, Oil and Natural Gas Corp. Ltd (ONGC) invested US$800 million in the petrochemicals arm of ONGC Petro Additions Ltd. (OPaL), to meet its equity requirements. Moreover, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the production of crude oil in the USA is expected to reach 12.77 million barrels per day in 2023 from 11.91 million barrels per day in 2022. Thus, the increasing investments and production of oil and gas will drive the demand for the surfactant EOR market during the forecast period.
Rising Importance of Bio-Based Surfactants:
The increasing importance of eco-friendly bio-surfactants is boosting the demand for the surfactant EOR. Bio-surfactants are proven to reduce petroleum hydrocarbon pollution. The growing concern about environmental issues increases the demand for bio-based surfactants. According to Swansea University, they developed green surfactants for better oil recovery and considered the need for low-impact oil recovery solutions. Also, the rising demand for more efficient oil recovery techniques and surfactant EOR's increasing popularity boosts the surfactant EOR industry. The bio-based surfactants sector is growing, for instance, in 2022, Solvay launched a new range of low carbon footprint bio-surfactants. Moreover, in 2021, Holiferm launched an eco-friendly bio-surfactant to the mass market, with an investment of US$7 million. Thus, the rising importance of bio-based surfactants will drive the demand for the surfactant EOR market during the forecast period.
Surfactant EOR Market Challenge
High Adoption of Renewable Energy:
There is a global shift towards renewable green energy, which has resulted in a reduction in oil consumption. This reduction has caused a decrease in oil consumption as well as a decline in oil and gas production, processing and drilling activities, reducing the demand for enhanced oil recovery techniques. Moreover, the shift toward electric vehicles in the developed and under-developed countries is hampering the growth of the existing internal combustion engine vehicles and also hinders the chemical-enhanced oil recovery market over the anticipated timeframe. Thus, the high adoption of renewable energy will create hurdles for market growth in the forecast period.
Surfactant EOR Industry Outlook
Technology launches, acquisitions and R&D activities are key strategies players adopt in the surfactant EOR markets. The top 10 companies in the surfactant EOR market are:
1. BASF SE
2. The DOW Chemical Company
3. Halliburton Company
5. Schlumberger Inc.
6. Huntsman Corporation
7. Lubrizol Corporation
8. Sasol Ltd.
9. Shell Chemicals
10. Solvay S.A.
- In January 2022, Evonik expanded a new production plant for bio-based and fully biodegradable rhamnolipids. Rhamnolipids are biosurfactants and act as an active ingredient, to serve the growing demand for environmentally friendly surfactants.
- In March 2021, BASF signed two distinct partnership agreements to expand its global leading position in the bio-based surfactants and actives market. BASF established a strategic alliance with Allied Carbon Solutions Co., Ltd (ACS) Japan and with Holiferm Ltd., UK.
- In September 2020, BASF completes the installation of enhanced oil recovery polymer injection plants in Argentina. BASF combines standard and high-performance polymers and surfactants into EOR formulations that are tailored to specific field conditions.
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