Thailands lubricant demand is expected to grow this year as the automobile manufacturing sector expands and foreign companies relocate to the country to avoid tariffs imposed as part of the trade war between the United States and China, according to a global consultancy.
The market for high quality base oils and synthetics in India will expand going forward as automakers strive to meet stringent environmental legislation and develop technologies for fuel economy, experts said at an industry event in Mumbai last month.
As China solidifies its place as the worlds largest lubricant market, that market will become more competitive, see faster growth in inland areas, and continue shifting toward higher quality products, Kline & Co. consultants said last week.
SAE International has stretched the lower boundaries of engine oil viscosity categories, adding two new grades - SAE 8 and SAE 12 - to SAE J300, the Engine Oil Viscosity Grade Classification System.
Thanks to a slowdown in the nations economic growth, lubricant demand in China was flat in 2014 at 7.6 million metric tons, an official from Sinopec Lubricants told an industry conference in Shanghai recently. The state-owned oil giant, which included greases in its calculations, predicted a 2.1 percent increase this year.
Diesel engine oils are the largest category of automotive lubricants in India, and they are evolving quickly. A Gulf Oil official said recently that the segment is shifting toward products that last longer, provide better fuel economy and that are compatible with emissions control technologies.
The bazaar may be an ancient part of commerce in India, but the countrys lubricant industry appears to be discovering it once again. Insiders say suppliers are relying increasingly on bazaar channels such as retail outlets, OEM-authorized service centers and transport nagars.
Indias tractor market is the worlds largest, and some analysts say it will continue expanding at healthy rates for the foreseeable future, bringing tractor lube demand along with it.
Sinopec Lubricants will expand lubricant production, logistics and marketing channels for overseas sales, especially in Asia, officials said this week.
Asia has become the worlds largest and fastest-growing lubricant market, but it still relies largely on specifications developed in and for other regions. A major additive supplier contends its time that Asia played a role in standards development, but the company said it will be difficult to make that happen.