Saturday, June 23, 2012

Industry demand duty free import to fill up widening gap

The widening gap between supply and demand in the local market was the main reason for the sharp rise in imports. In May, production was just 58,000 tonnes, while consumption edged up to 83,000 tonnes, leaving a gap of 25,000 tonnes over the two months. In April and May, rubber-based industries, especially tyre companies, imported 35,298 tonnes as against 22,811 tonnes in the same period of the previous year.

With natural rubber production expected to fall short of the domestic consumption for the second year consecutively, the rubber industry wants the Centre to permit duty-free imports, at least to the extent of the deficit.

While addressing the reporters on the sidelines of a two-day national rubber conference, All India Rubber Industries Association, President - Vinod Simon, said such a measure was imperative since the shortfall this year would be 75,000 tonnes. It was 65,000 tonnes last year. 

The Thai government has only bought 5,000 tonnes of rubber sheet under an intervention scheme that started in early May with the aim of helping farmers. Agriculture officials from Thailand will be meeting Malaysia’s Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities, Bernard Dompok, at the end of June to discuss support measures for natural rubber. The two countries will discuss natural rubber prices, which have fallen sharply due to global macroeconomic concerns.

Read lot more in Rubber4U – 1st July 2012 issue

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