Adhesive refers to a binding substance applied to the surface of materials to avoid separation. Adhesives are available in natural and synthetic form and can be classified as reactive and non-reactive types. Sealants are available in the form of a viscous material with little or no flow to allow easy penetration of substrate. Although the basic application is the same, sealants differ from adhesives as they lack strength and elongation properties. Sealants are preferred if they are insoluble, resistant to corrosion and provide appropriate adhesion to the surface.

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The adhesives and sealants market in Latin America is expected to be driven by the growth in end-user industries such as automobiles and construction where adhesives and sealants are used in panel laminating, flooring, insulation, facades, coating and lamination, among other functionalities. Moreover, continuously developing new technologies coupled with a wide range of applications of adhesives and sealants are expected to boost the market growth in the coming years.

The market has been shifting towards more durable, moisture curing, longer-lasting products such as polyurethane adhesives and silicone, polyurethane and styrene-block copolymer sealants. These products are expected to gradually penetrate the market and garner higher market share than prevailing systems including acrylic, polyvinyl acetate and synthetic rubber adhesives and sealants. New products are being developed to perform under extreme conditions such as hurricanes and storms. There have been breakthroughs to produce storm resistant, cured strength sealants for windows and storm resistant adhesives for roofing. These products have successfully survived the tests of simulation storms. Furthermore, new antimicrobial constituents are being added to adhesives and sealants to prevent mold growth on adhesive and sealant surfaces.

Industrial sectors have been witnessing a rapid growth in Brazil, Chile, Peru, Argentina, Colombia and other regions, thus fuelling the demand for adhesives and sealants. However, growing environmental concerns and volatile raw material prices of crude oil are expected to hinder the market growth. Bio-based adhesives and sealants are expected to catch up in the near future due to their eco-friendly characteristics.

Acrylic based adhesives emerged as the largest consumed as well as fastest growing adhesives, owing to their fast curing nature. These additives accounted for over 25% of the total adhesives consumed by the building and construction industry in 2013. Acrylic-based sealants were the leading sealants consumed in Latin America followed by silicone. Silicone-based sealants are expected to be the fastest growing type of sealants growing at a CAGR of 6.1% between 2014 and 2020. The demand for silicone-based sealants is mainly due to increasing innovative product development.

Cement is one of the major applications for adhesives and sealants in the Latin American building and construction market and it accounted for more than 20% of the total market in 2013 for both adhesives as well as sealants. Water proofing systems is expected to be the fastest growing market for adhesives as well as sealants. The growing industrialization and the subsequent need for infrastructure has been driving the market for adhesives and sealants in the building and construction industry in these countries.

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Brazil continued dominating the adhesives market for building and construction in Latin America and accounted for more than half of the total volume in 2013. Brazil has hosted the FIFA World Cup in 2014 and is scheduled to host the Olympics in 2016. These events have been prompting the growth of construction activities in Brazil, which is expected to drive the market for adhesives and sealants over the forecast period. Brazil also emerged as the leading market for sealants in Latin America followed by Mexico. Mexico sealants market for building and construction is growing at an estimated CAGR of approximately 3% between 2014 and 2020.

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