The chemical industry is a branch that deals with the manufacturing of chemical products. Chemicals are necessary substances and raw products for many other markets and branches of the worldwide economy. Therefore, the chemical industry is at the very beginning of the supply and value chain for many products in our daily life.
The chemical industry is connected to nearly every market
Due to these multiple connections to other segments, the chemical industry one of the largest, but seamlessly one of the most diversified and heterogeneous industries in the world. It is very difficult to give a precise figure for the high number of chemical products, that are manufactured by this industry every day. Important industries that require these substances are, for example, the agriculture and food industry. Besides this, the oil & gas and automotive industry require chemical components as well. Coatings, construction, and the water treatment industry are just even more examples of connected industry sectors.
Specialty chemicals, fine chemicals, and pharmaceuticals
Besides the products with a high volume in the market, often referred to as commodity or technical products, the chemical industry is producing specialty products. Those products are more specialized to solve a specific problem for the customer. Applications can be, for example, food ingredients to create a fluffy bun, defoamers in coatings or water treatment applications. Also, polymer additives to apply a certain behavior to a product like wire tires, or cables can be a specialty chemical. Besides this, the chemical industry produces fine chemicals. These are substances, which are ultra-pure chemicals and produced in lower volumes because the cleaning and purification process is very costly.
The chemical industry: More than chemicals
The pharmaceutical industry is a very important part of the chemical industry. Therefore, this whole part of the economy is often referred to as the chemical-pharmaceutical industry. Companies within the pharmaceutical industry are dealing with manufacturing and producing drugs. Besides these activities as one of the later steps in the whole process, the range of activities includes research and development for new active ingredients and dosage forms as well as marketing activities for the newly developed drugs.
Finally, these are just some examples, how the chemical industry is connected to various different markets and industries in the worldwide economy.