Chemical Manufacturing Industry Profile

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Excerpt from Chemical Manufacturing Industry Profile

Companies in this industry transform organic and inorganic raw materials by a chemical process and formulate products. Major companies in the US include Dow, DuPont, and Pfizer. Major companies outside the US include BASF (Germany), Formosa Plastics (Taiwan), Roche (Switzerland), SABIC (Saudi Arabia), and Sinopec Group (China).

The global chemical manufacturing industry generated about $4 trillion annual revenue in 2019, according to Statista. China, the US, Ireland, Germany, and Belgium produce the most chemicals and also are among the largest importers of chemicals, according to the World's Top Exports. China, India, and other emerging markets are being targeted for industry growth..

The US chemical manufacturing industry includes about 14,000 establishments (single-location companies and units of multi-location companies) with combined annual revenue of about $740 billion.


The overall health of the US economy drives the demand for chemical industry since chemicals are used to make a wide variety of industrial and consumer products. The profitability of individual companies is closely tied to efficient operations. Big companies have economies of scale in purchasing and production. Small companies can compete effectively by producing specialty products, of which there are a large number. The US industry is concentrated: the top 50 companies account for about 50% of revenue.

Many specialty chemicals are protected by patents, either for the product itself or the manufacturing process, and have no direct competition. Indirect competition comes from products with ...

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