The global petrochemical market was worth $514.5 billion in 2014 and is projected to reach $758.3 billion by 2022, growing at a compound annual rate (CAGR) of 8.8 percent.

According to a new report from Grand View Research, increasing demand for petrochemical products in industries including transportation and construction will drive growth over the next seven years. In particular, infrastructure development and transportation industry growth in the BRIC nations (Brazil, Russia, India and China) is expected to propel demand over the forecast period.

In 2014, ethylene accounted for more than 25 percent of the global petrochemical market and demand is set to remain buoyant thanks to growing use of polyethylene in the packaging industry.

Methanol, however, is predicted to be the fastest growing segment in terms of revenue, growing at a CAGR of more than 15 percent through 2022. The expanding methanol to olefins industry will drive use of methanol over the forecast period, in addition to its widespread use in manufacturing biodiesel. Government initiatives to reduce carbon emissions are likely to augment biodiesel demand, leading to greater demand for methanol.

Globally, China was the leading consumer of petrochemicals in 2014 and demand in China is forecast grow by 10 percent over the next seven years.

North America accounted for over 20 percent of the market in 2014. Here, too, demand is expected to remain strong. The research firm cited rising shale gas exploration activity in the United States and Canada which is driving growth in the region, together with rising use of benzene and xylene in industries including lamination and packaging.