Titanium dioxide Prices, markets & analysis
If you buy or sell Titanium dioxide or related products, you need up-to-date global pricing data and the background information to help you understand it.
Our network of price reporters across Asia, Europe and the US enables us to deliver this. We publish their insights in our comprehensive daily and weekly price reports, plus we offer the news and analysis you need to put pricing information into context.
Titanium dioxide Overview Transcript
Titanium dioxide is a naturally occurring oxide of titanium it’s typically called by it’s chemical formula which is TiO2. When used as a pigment it is called Titanium White or Pigment White 6.
TiO2 is mainly used as a white powder pigment because of its brightness and high refractive index. It is used in paints and coatings and also glazes and enamels, plastics, paper, inks, fibres, food, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.
TiO2 is also resistant to discolouration under ultra violet light and is used in plastics and sun screens
Another growing outlet is as a photocatalyst where it is used in applications such as light emitting diodes, liquid crystal displays, and electrodes for plasma displays.
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Titanium dioxide news and market information products from ICIS
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Titanium dioxide: Market overview
Asian TiO2 prices are expected to be flat or slightly higher for certain grades or applications.
Price sensitive coating buyers are likely to resist any price hikes, except for specialty grades in view of lower inventory levels.
Higher-end applications in ink or plastic sectors are likely to encounter higher pricing, although below the proposed hike of $100/tonne, depending on market fundamentals.
Demand is expected to pick up in April and thereafter in the architectural coating sectors as the weather improves. However, local currency fluctuations against the dollar, weaker Chinese demand and political instability in certain Asian countries may prompt buyers to be cautious.
European TiO2 Q2 contract prices are expected to remain stable with the market slowly balancing. With mixed Q2 contract price outcomes, producers’ attention is focused squarely on maintaining market share. A mild winter led to a gradual, longer paint season without a noticeable spike in coatings demand, which often supports a price rise. Asian export prices remain attractive for lower primer grades. However, buyers are maintaining a preference for standard European sulphate and chloride grades.
North American TiO2 prices have been proposed higher by one producer for very late in the second quarter, but most buyers expect values to remain flat for the period as a result of plentiful supply and delayed spring coatings demand stemming from harsh winter weather, mostly in the northeast of the US. Talk of potential short-term price weakness has surfaced, but most sources say that may be counterbalanced by several price-hike efforts proposed for the third quarter and increased optimism about eventual coatings demand.
Updated to mid-April 2014
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Titanium Dioxide Methodology
About Titanium dioxide
Titanium dioxide (TiO2) occurs as odourless, colourless to white crystalline powder in two forms, anatase and rutile. Titanium dioxide is not flammable, explosive and gives no reason to fire risks.
The main use of TiO2 is as a white powder pigment used in products such as paints, coatings, plastics, paper, inks, fibres, food and cosmetics. Titanium dioxide also has good ultraviolet (UV) light resistance properties and is seeing growing demand in photocatalysts.
It is used in products such as paints and coatings, including glazes and enamels, plastics, paper, inks, fibres, foods, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics. In particular, high performance grades of TiO2 are finding a growing market in the cosmetics sector and most toothpastes use TiO2.
Titanium dioxide is produced from either ilmenite, rutile or titanium slag. Titanium pigment is extracted by using either sulphuric acid (sulphate process) or chlorine (chloride route). The sulphate process employs simpler technology while the chloride route produces a purer product.