India’s natural rubber output expected to go up 16 per cent during 2017-18; defies global trend

Natural rubber production in India is expected to reach 800,000 tonnes in 2017- 18, a growth of 16% over last year, the state-run Rubber Board said in a statement.

Production of natural rubber rose 5.7% to 259,000 tonnes during April-August 2017, the Rubber Board said. The output during April-August 2016 was at 245,000 tonnes.

Imports have been consistently rising from 2008-09 and stood at 458,374 tonnes in 2015-16. However, in 2016-17 imports declined by 7% to 426,188 tonnes.

Imports of natural rubber further declined by 11.6% during the period under review compared to the same period last year and 66% of the import was through duty paid channel. The Rubber Board has projected imports at 320,000 tonnes in 2017-18.

Natural rubber consumption during the same period increased from 4,33,930 tonnes to 441,380 tonnes. Consumption is seen at 1.07 million tonnes in 2017-18, the Rubber Board said.

Meanwhile, the Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries (ANRPC) has scaled down its earlier forecast of world supply of natural rubber as it feels that prevailing downtrend in the market is likely to pull down production further.

In its latest report, ANRPC has stated that the world supply of natural rubber is expected to be 12.756 million tonnes in 2017, slightly lower than 12.771 million tonnes anticipated a month ago. The total global supply during January-March 2017 was short by nearly 6 lakh tonnes and it is anticipated to widen to 7 lakh tonnes by the end of June, the report said.

The anticipated faster growth in supply in Cambodia (35.3%) and India (20.2%) are because of expected expansion of the area to be tapped during the year. ANRPC has pegged the Indian production in 2017 at 7.50 lakh tonnes.

The prevailing bearing trends in natural rubber prices are due to unexpected fall in crude oil prices and sharp appreciation of Chinese yuan and Japanese yen, the report pointed out.

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