World Analysis – Methanol

  • Market Overview
  • Key Benefits
  • Service Features
  • Annual Table of Contents

Market Overview

Duration: Long-term outlook to 2050

Methanol is one of the primary commodity materials used in chemical synthesis, with derivatives having applications in virtually all walks of life. Methanol is a raw material for many important chemicals, such as formaldehyde, MTBE, acetic acid, methylamines, methyl methacrylate, dimethyl ether, and dimethyl terephthalate. Recently, demand for methanol has increased significantly due to its use as a gateway to olefins and polyolefins via the Methanol-to-Olefins or MTO process. It can also be used as a fuel in biodiesel, a gasoline blendstock, and as a fuel for boilers. In mainland China, methanol is used as a vehicle fuel in blends ranging from five percent to 100 percent (‘M5′ to ‘M100′).

Methanol is mainly produced from natural gas and coal via a three-step process of synthesis gas production, methanol synthesis and distillation. Natural gas or coal is converted through reforming or oxidation and gasification to synthesis gas. The synthesis gas is then converted into methanol in the methanol synthesis stage. At last, the methanol is purified in distillation steps to commercial quality. All technologies have these three basic steps and only differ in the method in which these stages are performed. Natural gas prices directly impact the methanol production costs and margins, whereas, in mainland China, coal prices have the most influence on methanol production costs. In recent years, due to its various uses, there has been growing interest in e-methanol , which can be produced from carbon dioxide and is a renewable source of hydrogen.

Key Benefits

Duration: Long-term outlook to 2050

The World Analysis – ABS Resins provides a comprehensive analysis and key insights into critical market developments as they shape the future outlook for the global ABS Resins market.

The following reports, data files, analytical tools and visualization modules are available online and can be downloaded from our website:

  • Direct Access to the Subject Matter Experts
  • In-depth exploration of present market strategic insights, recognition of critical challenges, and presentation of our experts’ forecasts and analysis
  • Explanatory Notes detailing data sources, methodologies, unit and conversion factors, and World Analysis deliverables.
  • Energy and Economy assumptions
  • Price, cost, and margin base assumptions forecast and sensitivities analysis, including price assessment methodology and price definitions across all regions.
  • Excel data files with standard supply/demand graphics and price forecasts extended to 2050, trade grids with country and regional trade flows Data appendix (Excel) with supply/demand, capacity and trade tables.
  • An online dashboard visualization of capacity, supply/demand, trade grids, and price, cost and margin forecasts
  • Supply/demand and capacity database access via data browser
  • Data Appendix (Excel) with supply/demand and capacity tables
  • Capacity by company/shareholder, capacity integration, top producer/consumer and surplus/deficit capacity ranking, and ownership/subsidiary information

In addition to the main product, Methanol, capacity and textual analysis are provided for the following products:

  • Acetic Acid
  • Biodiesel
  • Chloromethanes
  • Dimethyl ether
  • Formaldehyde
  • Gasoline Blending
  • Methanol-to-olefins / Methanol-to-Propylene
  • Methyl methacrylate
  • Methyl tert-butyl ether
  • Methylamine
  • Methanol as a marine bunker fuel

This World Analysis contains detailed information on capacities, production, demand, and trade for all significant producing and consuming countries and regions. Although data gathering is essential for understanding history and potential future trends, we believe that the interpretation and analysis of the data is the most valuable information to our clients.

Service Features

Duration: Long-term outlook to 2050


Frequency: Bi-annual
Format: Excel
Timeframe: 10-year forecasts available from periods 1990 – 2050
Area Coverage: By country/region; include “hypothetical” capacity changes in the forecast period
Chemical Coverage: Methanol


Frequency: Updated daily
Format: Excel
Timeframe: 10-year forecasts available from periods 1990 – 2050

  • Nameplate capacity on individual plant location by producer and by the shareholder for main study products + essential derivatives
  • Integration table and top producer and consumer ranking tables (includes net surplus/deficit)
Chemical Coverage: Methanol, Formaldehyde, DMT, Acetic Acid, MTBE, Methyl Methacrylate (MMA), DME, Methylamines, Methyl Chloride, Methylene Chloride, Chloroform, TAME


Frequency: Quarterly
Format: Excel
Timeframe: up to 2050
Area Coverage: For the key regions of North America (US), Europe & Asia
Chemical Coverage: Methanol


Frequency: Bi-annual
Format: Excel
Timeframe: 1 year of history, up to 10 years of forecast
Area Coverage: Between partner countries and by region
Chemical Coverage: Methanol


Frequency: Annual
Format: PDF/HTML
Timeframe: 5-year history, forecast to 2050
Coverage: Regional market summaries

  • Production economics/snapshots for selected regions/processes
  • Production process/technology overview
Chemical Coverage: Methanol, Acetic Acid, Biodiesel, Chloromethanes, Dimethyl ether, Formaldehyde, Gasoline Blending, Methyl methacrylate, Methyl tert-butyl ether, Methylamine


  • Access to our global team of subject matter experts
  • Interactive data visualization module (dashboard)
  • Standard supply/demand graphs
  • Data appendix with supply/demand and capacity tables
  • Supply/demand and capacity database access via data browser

Annual Table of Contents

  • Introduction 5
  • Executive Overview 7
  • Strategic Insights 11
  • 2021 and H1 2022: Tight market conditions 11
  • Higher-than-anticipated production costs 11
  • Demand: slightly above GDP; more reliant on traditional chemical derivatives 11
  • Greening the industry: The growing importance of the sustainability agenda 12
  • Looking forward: Projects 12
  • North America 13
  • South America 18
  • West Europe 22
  • Central Europe 26
  • CIS & Baltic States 29
  • Africa 32
  • Middle East 35
  • Indian Subcontinent 39
  • Mainland China 42
  • Other Northeast Asia 46
  • Southeast Asia 49
  • Production Process Overview 52
  • Methanol Production Process Overview 52
  • Methanol Technology 52
  • Low-Pressure Process 52
  • Combined Reforming 52
  • Two-Stage Reforming 53
  • Autothermal reforming 53
  • Coal gasification 54
  • Methanol from biomass via gasification 56
  • Renewable Methanol (E-Methanol) 58
  • Methanol Product Specifications 60
  • Production Process Economics 63
  • Methanol Production Economics – Explanatory Notes 63
  • North America - Generic Process 64
  • Middle East - Generic Process 65
  • Northwest China - Coal-Based Process 66
  • Derivative Market Overview 68
  • Acetic acid 68
  • Biodiesel 71
  • Chloromethanes 76
  • Dimethyl ether 79
  • Formaldehyde 82
  • Gasoline Blending 85
  • Methanol-to-olefins / Methanol-to-Propylene 88
  • Methyl methacrylate 91
  • Methyl tert-butyl ether 95
  • Methylamine 99
  • Methanol as a marine bunker fuel 102
  • Price Forecast 104
  • Methodology 104
  • World 105
  • North America 106
  • West Europe 106
  • Asia 107
  • Price Forecast Tables 110
  • Supply/Demand forecast methodology 112

Market Coverage





Javier Ortiz

Javier Ortiz Director, North & South America Methanol Lead Chemical Market Analytics by OPIS

Javier Ortiz is the Director of the North and South American methanol market at Chemical Market Analytics. Javier Ortiz is the North and South American methanol market director at Chemical Market Analytics. As of 2019, Mr. Ortiz leads methanol market coverage in the Americas. He began his consulting career at CMAI (Chemical Market Associates, Inc.), in 2007 as a research analyst for the North and South American synthetic fibers market, primarily focusing on the polyester and nylon supply chains. He was subsequently appointed global leader of CMAI’s senior research analyst group while taking over consulting coverage of the nylon raw materials markets in the Americas. Before joining the IHS Markit base chemicals business (now known as Chemical Market Analytics) Methanol team, Mr. Ortiz formed part of its Plastics group for nearly a decade, where he led coverage of the polyolefins market in Latin American, directed the QuiMax Latin American consulting service, and was also responsible for polystyrene market research in the Americas. He holds a degree in industrial engineering and a minor in business administration from Texas A&M University, US.
Mike Nash

Mike Nash Vice President, Global Syngas Team Lead | Americas Acetyls Lead Chemical Market Analytics by OPIS

Mr. Mike Nash is the Vice President for Syngas Chemicals (including the methanol and acetyls practices) at Chemical Market Analytics. He works with a global team of regional consultants and overlays their analyses with a global perspective. His responsibilities include the weekly World Methanol Report and monthly World Methanol Analysis, including the weekly and monthly Global Acetyls Market Reports and the related World Analyses for Methanol, Acetyls, and Formaldehyde. Before joining the IHS Markit base chemicals business (now known as Chemical Market Analytics) in September 2012, Mr. Nash worked for BP's petrochemicals division for 19 years preceding a two-year stint in Total's UK fuels business. He performed various commercial roles within BP, in international business management, marketing, project management, and logistics, based in London, Duesseldorf, and Kuala Lumpur. His last role in the Total UK was the Logistics Director for Specialties. Mr. Nash holds a Master of Arts in English Language and Literature from Edinburgh University, UK, and a Master of Business Administration from Kingston University, UK.
Shreya Kansara

Shreya Kansara Principal Analyst Chemical Market Analytics by OPIS

Shreya Kansara is a Senior Research Analyst with the Syngas team at Chemical Market Analytics. Ms. Kansara is responsible for maintaining and updating the global data files including the econometric models. She also provides support to the team for various analyses, client queries, presentations, publication of the Weekly and Monthly reports, and the World Analysis. Before taking on her current role in 2018, she worked as a business analyst for the President of a prominent Chemicals company in India. She holds a bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering and an MBA in Marketing from the University of Mumbai, India.
Xiaomeng Ma

Xiaomeng Ma Director, Asia Methanol Chemical Market Analytics by OPIS

Xiaomeng Ma is the Director of Asia Methanol at Chemical Market Analytics Xiaomeng is an experienced researcher with a strong track-record working experience in the industrial sectors spanning from petrochemical markets, and specialty chemical industries to energy and fuel industries. Xiaomeng Ma's current focuses are on methanol-related industries. She is skilled in project assessment, building and implementing business strategies, and creating economic models. She has a strong professional background with a Masters in Engineering and a realistic understanding of the opportunities and challenges in the Asia chemical industry.

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