The Global Lithium Market demand stood at USD 3.62 billion in 2018 and is projected to exhibit a CAGR of over 8.1% during the forecast period, owing to the increasing application of lithium-ion batteries in electric vehicles, portable consumer electronic equipment, and grid management across the globe. Additionally, the demand for lithium is increasing with the growing adoption of glasses, ceramics, and dyes, which is expected to propel the growth of the market during the forecast period.
The global lithium market has been segmented based on product type and application. By product type, the global market has been divided into lithium hydroxide, lithium carbonate, lithium chloride, butyllithium, lithium metal, and others. Lithium carbonate with its application in battery materials, glass, frits, aluminum, cc powder, and construction adhesives, held a major share of over 30% of the market, in 2018, and is expected to follow the same trend during the forecast period. Lithium carbonate and its inorganic derivatives such as lithium bromide, lithium fluoride, and lithium nitrate are majorly used in the manufacturing of lithium batteries and production of pharmaceuticals. The increase in the demand for electric vehicles coupled with stringent government norms regarding carbon emission in the automotive industry is expected to boost the market growth during the forecast period. Additionally, lithium hydroxide (LiOH), in 2018 accounted for the second-largest share due to its varied properties such as high resistance to a wide range of temperature and water. These properties of LiOH have increased its application in general purpose grease, ceramics, and Portland cement. LiOH also finds application in gas purification system; it helps to remove carbon dioxide and produce lithium carbonate and water. Some of the major applications of lithium hydroxide as gas purifier are in submarines, rebreathers, and space-shuttles.
Based on application, the global lithium market outlook has been segmented into energy storage, greases, frits, glasses and ceramics, air treatment, adhesives, and others. The energy storage segment accounted for the largest market share and is expected to maintain its dominance throughout the forecast period. The growth is attributed to the rise in concern among government bodies and other agencies regarding the issue of global warming and expanding carbon footprint in the atmosphere. The restrictions imposed by various government bodies such as the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), European Commission (EC), and United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) to restrict greenhouse carbon emission in automotive industry and implementation of electric vehicles into mass production are expected to fuel the growth of the lithium market during the forecast period. Lithium, with its high-energy density and rechargeable batteries, has been able to capture a major share of the automotive and electronics market.
The key players operating in the global lithium industry are SQM S.A. (Chile), Sayona Mining Limited (Australia), Albemarle Corporation (US), Livent (US), Orocobre Limited Pty Ltd (Australia), Altura Mining (Australia), Jiangxi Ganfeng Lithium Co. Ltd (China), Critical Elements Corporation (Canada), Tianqi Lithium Industries Inc. (China), and Lithium Americas Corp (Canada).
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