Demand for Non-corrosive Pipes Will Drive the Global Flexible Pipes Market for Oil and Gas Industry Until 2020, Says Technavio


August 18, 2016 11:23 AM Eastern Daylight Time

LONDON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–According to the latest market study released by Technavio, the global flexible pipes market for the oil and gas industry is expected to post a CAGR of nearly 4% by 2020.

Global flexible pipes market for the oil and gas industry is expected to post a CAGR of nearly 4% by 2020.

The market will be driven by the growing deep and ultra-deepwater drilling activities in the coming five years. As the global population will increase to over nine billion in 2040 from 7.2 billion in 2014, the global energy demand is going to increase. This will lead to more offshore oil and gas exploration and production activities during the forecast period. Technological advances, coupled with the growing demand for crude oil, are pushing the oil companies to drill offshore areas to cater to the needs of consumers. Countries such as Brazil, Mexico (gulf part), Venezuela, Nigeria and other West African countries are projected to show the highest growth in the deepwater market, which is supported by the growing deepwater hydrocarbon discoveries and declining production from onshore and shallow water basins in these countries. The above factors will drive the market’s growth in the next five years.

The cost of repairing and replacing corroded pipes is subject to factors such as location, temperature, and materials. A large amount is spent annually across the globe in repairing and replacing piping systems, cracking transport pipeline, and others. Flexible pipes are widely used to reduce such expenses, as these pipes have high strength, durability, non-corrosiveness, and are lightweight. These properties make them a preferred alternative to steel and concrete pipes used in the oil and gas industry.

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Technavio’s chemicals and materials analysts categorizes the global flexible pipes market for the oil and gas industry into four major segments by type. They are:

  • HDPE
  • PA
  • PVDF
  • Others

Global HDPE flexible pipes market for oil and gas industry

The HDPE flexible pipes dominated the market and accounted for a market share of over 76% in the global flexible pipes market for oil and gas industry in 2015. The HDPE flexible pipe material exhibits many advantages over traditional materials for pressure pipe applications, which are largely used in oil and gas exploration and production activities. These pipes are easy to process, easy to install, light, flexible, corrosion-free, and can be easily welded by butt fusion or electrofusion couplers to confirm a total leak proof network.

According to Chandrakumar Badala Jaganathan, one of the lead plastics, polymers, and elastomers research analyst from Technavio, “HDPE pipes are cost-effective solutions for oil and gas, municipal, industrial, marine, mining, landfill, and agricultural applications. HDPE pipes can be helpful in carrying potable water, wastewater, slurries, chemicals, hazardous wastes, and compressed gases. These pipes have the lowest repair frequency per mile of pipe per year compared with all other pressure pipe materials used for urban gas distribution.”

Global PA flexible pipes market for oil and gas industry

The PA flexible pipes segment was the second largest segment in the market in 2015 with a market share of around 15% and will reach a value of USD 132.8 million in 2020. Polyamides are homopolymers of an amino acid. They are also copolymers of a diamine and a diacid. Polyamides have high strength, abrasion, toughness, chemical resistance, and thermal resistance compared with conventional polymers. Polyamide 12 is a part of polyamides. PA 11 and PA 12 are more flexible, good at low temperature, and are also less sensitive to moisture. These are more expensive than HDPE, which is why they are not in great demand. The demand is also low because they are mostly used in high-risk applications such as exploration of sour gas (CO2 and H2S) up to a temperature of 176 °F.

Global PVDF flexible pipes market for oil and gas industry

The global PVDF flexible pipes market for oil and gas industry was valued at USD 45.44 million in 2015 and will reach a value of USD 53 million in 2020, growing at a CAGR of over 3%. Polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) is a non-reactive and pure thermoplastic fluoropolymer manufactured by the polymerization of vinylidene difluoride. PVDF is a specialty plastic material in the fluoropolymer family, widely used in applications such as chemical processing, oil and gas, new energies, construction, and others.

The market is expected to grow a steady pace during the forecast period owing to the recent increase in the demand for crude oil and the resultant increase in the number of offshore drilling activities. The population in developing economies is rising at a rapid pace and the total disposable income is also growing, which are driving the market for oil production,” adds Chandrakumar.

Global other flexible pipes market for oil and gas industry

The other flexible pipes accounted for a market share of over 3% in the global flexible pipes market for the oil and gas industry in 2015. Other flexible pipes include polypropylene (PP) pipes and polyether ether ketone (PEEK) pipes. These are used to transfer oil and gas from exploration and production stages. However, these flexible pipes are less prevalent in oil and gas activities due to their high cost and low availability. Also, manufacturing these pipes involves a number of processes, which further increase the cost.

The key properties of flexible pipes made of PP and PEEK are:

High heat resistance

Lightweight and weldable

Excellent chemical resistance

Naturally white in color with good clarity

High dielectric strength

  Continuous service temperature of 500 °F

Low smoke and toxic gas emissions

Very low moisture absorption

Excellent fatigue, stress-crack, hydrolysis, and chemical resistance

Superior creep resistance


Source: Technavio

The top vendors highlighted by Technavio’s research analysts in this report are:

  • Airborne Oil & Gas
  • GE Oil & Gas
  • NOV
  • SoluForce
  • Technip

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