Conventional fuels such as oil and gas remains the most used resources for fulfilling energy demands. With a number of oil and gas reserves discovered, the exploration activities have increased all over the world in last decade. The upstream market’s growth supplements the growth in related equipment and services’ market. Tubular goods are very essential components for development of reserves to bring them to desired production levels. These factors have formed the major drivers of oil and gas tubular goods market.
Oil and gas tubular goods are widely known as Oil Country Tubular Goods (OCTG). These products are made of hollow steel with circular cross section. Oil and gas tubular goods are used in production and exploration activities on offshore as well as onshore reserves. The Oil Country Tubular Goods comprises of three major products as drill pipe, tubing, and casing. These products are among key equipment used in oil and gas exploration. The right selection of the product, depending upon the quality and suitability, is important to prevent damages during exploration activities such as leakages.
The products can also be segmented on the basis of pressure, loads and overall utilization time in a day. High axial tension resistance and circumferential stress resistance are some of the major properties Tubular Goods materials need to display. Drill pipes are about 30ft long heavy seamless tubes. These pipes are used to circulate the drilling fluids and turn the drill bit. Casing pipes are used to form the surface of borehole. They are placed at the well head. The tubing pipes are used after the completion of the drilling process. They are inserted to extract the oil and gas to the surface from the depth of the well bore. The oil and gas tubular goods’ market can also be segmented on the basis of production process used to manufacture goods as seamless and welded. Seamless goods have a higher thickness and stress withstanding capacity as compared to its welded counterparts.
The Oil Country Tubular Goods can be divided according to the standard grading procedure as API and premium. The American Petroleum Institute (API) have set standard specifications for Oil Country Tubular Goods based on their properties. The chemical composition of the steel used and the heat treatment given to them are used for dividing them among ten standard grades. One of the major bottlenecks for the Oil Country Tubular Goods market is the steady and secure supply of raw materials. The materials used in these products need to exhibit a high level of corrosion resistance as well. High degree of contaminants in reservoirs encountered during deep well drilling is bolstering the demand for more robust materials to be used for manufacturing these Oil Country Tubular Goods. Highly stringent material specifications for OCTG manufacturing make it difficult to source the desired quantity of raw materials at the right times. With the falling prices of metals such as steel, the market may get the production cost advantage. Efficient designing of Oil Country Tubular Goods require extensive R&D initiatives and frequent product testing.
Excess in production and stringent government policies on exploration worldwide is likely to stagnate and subsequently reduce the demand in major areas such as the US. However from a global perspective, large market players are still aggressively pursuing exploration and production activities; hence the demand Tubular Goods is not likely to dry up anytime in the near future. Strong R&D and rapid product innovation is expected in this market in the future and is likely to drive down the costs for these Tubular Goods.
Asia-Pacific and North America is likely to be strong demand centers for these Tubular Goods in the forecast period. The Middle East and Latin American regions are likely to display steady demand for such products. Due to ongoing economic crisis, the demand profile of Europe is still uncertain but is likely to recover in coming years. By the nature of the business, manufacturing of Tubular Goods requires high end technology, skilled labor and steep learning curves in special equipment manufacturing. Chinese manufacturers are likely to enter the market and capture significant market share within the forecast horizon.
Some of the major players in the Oil Country Tubular Goods include Tenaris S.A., TMK Group, Vallourec S.A., Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation, SPIE Oil & Gas Services, Hunting Energy Services, Kelly Pipe Co. LLC, Argus Machine Co. Ltd., Benteler International AG, MRC Global Inc., ACE O.C.T.G. Ltd, Centric Pipe, LLC, U. S. Steel Tubular Products, Sandvik AB, and Energex Tube.
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