Friday, December 24, 2010

Duty cut may not have desired impact, but supply to improve

Natural rubber consuming sector welcomed the government’s decision of reducing import duty on natural rubber to 7.5%, which would help in boosting raw material supply in the market. Looking at the price position and availability situation, it will provide much needed respite to the industry.

The government's efforts to cool down the rising natural rubber prices by lowering import duty may not yield the desired results, as consuming sector are unlikely to resort to overseas purchases, as the international prices of natural rubber is more than the domestic price. If, by adding 7.5% import duty on Rs. 223/-, the landing cost of natural rubber will be around Rs 240/- a kg. This will not be an economic proposition for the user industry.

The above scenario is going to prove the forecast made by Rubber4U, during May 2010 and also at IRC 2010, to be coming true.

Read lot more in Rubber4U – 1st January 2011 issue

Thursday, December 23, 2010

NR prices at all time high and Govt cuts import duty to 7.5%

Ahead of Christmas, natural rubber prices have jumped to a new high at Rs. 207.50 per kg at Kottayam on concerns over supply situation which has fuelled the price rise and also a spurt in the international prices, which is currently at Rs. 222.58 per kg.

Trade sources said that usually prices rally ahead of Christmas and it is estimated that going by the current demand-supply situation, the price could zoom even to Rs 222 per kg.

Natural rubber prices are moving in a northward direction for the past few months due to continuous rain in Kerala, which adversely affected tapping. On the other hand rubber prices have gone up in the international market due to increase in demand from China.

According to a government statement on 23rd December, import duty on natural rubber has been cut to 7.5% for shipments up to 40,000 tonnes until 31st March 2011. The duty will be reinstated at whichever is the lower of 20% or Rs20 per kg after that date.

India has imported 143,468 tonnes of natural rubber during April-November 2010, up just 3% on a year ago.

Tyre makers had been demanding the cut in natural rubber duty for over a year as they were struggling to pass on the rise in the natural rubber price to end users.

Despite trading at a record high natural rubber is cheaper in the domestic market and the import duty cut is unlikely to prompt the user industry to sign fresh imports deals.

Read lot more in Rubber4U – 1st January 2011 issue

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Hearing on 10th February 2011

India, the second top consumer and fourth largest producer of natural rubber in the world, is facing a supply shortage, due to which prices of natural rubber rose to record high and is currently trading between Rs 199 & Rs. 203a kg and is believed that it would stay high till February 2011. The tyre industry, the main consumer of natural rubber, is not optimistic of any major relief in rubber prices in the year ahead.

Prices of natural rubber and crude oil have a co-relation as synthetic rubber, a substitute for natural rubber, depends on the price of crude oil. Crude oil prices have risen to around $90 a barrel, and is expected to remain firm.

But any move by the government to cut import duties on natural rubber could change the scenario. The central government’s response to demands for cutting import duty on natural rubber to 7.5% from 20%, will be one of the factor likely to impact prices early next year.

Delhi High Court has asked the central government to file its response to petitions filed by industry bodies in this regard. The case is posted for hearing on 10th February 2011.

Read lot more in Rubber4U – 1st January 2011 issue

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Another blow to tyre industry

Crude oil prices, which is currently at $89.08 (3:49 AM EST – 09.12.2010), seems to have upset the calculations of tyre manufacturers. The tyre companies expect an increase in overall costs, as the rising crude oil prices may make synthetic rubber more costlier, which would be another major blow to the industry.

Currently tyre industry is reeling under the impact of a sharp increase in natural rubber prices. Natural rubber prices witnessing a historic hike in the past few months, currently ruling around Rs 197-200 per kg, the price gap between NR and SR has widened, favouring increased substitution. The higher prices of NR had prompted the tyre industry to substitute it with synthetic rubber. The industry has been sourcing its total requirement of SBR through import. An increase in synthetic rubber prices could force the industry to reduce its consumption.

The tyre industry used 1.01 lakh tonnes of SBR and 91,100 tonnes of PBR during 2009-10. The average PBR prices stood at Rs 160 per kg for the quarter ending December 2010. The industry has projected it to go up to Rs 170 per kg by March 2011. The industry expects a similar increase in the SBR prices also. The average price touched Rs 120 per kg in December 2010 and are likely to move up to Rs 130 by March 2011.

Synthetic rubber will continue to hold an attraction till such time the natural rubber prices undergo a strong downward correction.

Read lot more in Rubber4U – 15th December 2010 issue

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

NR output dips & may cut import duty

In November, NR production declined by 5.4% to 88,500 tonnes, as compared to 93,500 tonnes in the year ago period, due to heavy rain in the key producing region. Cumulative production during April-November 2010 period rose by 2.9% to 5,46,150 tonnes, as against 5,30,900 tonnes in the corresponding period of the previous fiscal, a senior Rubber Board official said.

Natural rubber imports during November rose by nearly 49% to 10,744 tonnes, as against 7,215 tonnes in the same period of the previous year. During April-November 2010, the imports rose to 1,43,468 tonnes from 1,39,321 tonnes in the corresponding period of previous fiscal.

According to the government, rising incomes may help more than double annual car sales to 3 million by 2015, which in turn will boost demand for NR. Prices in India reached a record last month on concern that the low output season in Southeast Asia will worsen a deficit.

India may allow imports of as much as 100,000 metric tonnes at a lower duty to meet surging demand for tyres. The trade ministry has recommended imports at a concessional rate for a maximum of 100,000 tonnes and tax changes on tyre imports. The finance ministry may make a decision after the end of the current session of parliament, which runs to 13th December, said trade secretary Rahul Khullar, in an interview.

Domestic production is not going to increase dramatically, demand is going through the roof because factories are being set up to make radial tyres. The pressure on prices will continue tight through next year, until you resolve the availability issue, Khullar said.

There will be imports in the coming years if there’s no fresh supply and the auto sector continues to do well.

Read lot more in Rubber4U – 15th December 2010 issue

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Unrealistic claim

The Automative Tyre Manufacturers Association (ATMA) is planning to send a reminder to the Centre, contesting the claims made by the Rubber Board. Tyre manufacturing companies have criticised the Rubber Board for inflating rubber stock position and stated that the stock claim made by the Rubber Board was merely on paper.

The closing stock, as reported by the Rubber Board to the Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries (ANRPC), has been pegged at 38% of the country's total NR production. Even world's largest rubber producing countries including Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia have closing stocks at mere 7%, 14% and 3%, respectively, of their production.

ATMA said that closing stock of the world’s biggest rubber consumer – China, is only 6% of its total consumption. But India has one third of its total consumption stockpiled as stock.

Rajiv Budhraja, director general of ATMA said, when rubber prices are ruling at an all time high and the very availability is a concern, such tall stock claims are unrealistic.

Rise in trading fees to curb speculation

China will increase the costs of trading agriculture and metal futures as part of the government’s efforts to limit speculation and tame inflation.
Premier Wen Jiabao’s government has pledged to use price controls and may raise interest rates a second time this year to rein in inflation that surged last month to the fastest pace in two years.

Read lot more in Rubber4U – 1st December 2010 issue

Monday, November 15, 2010

No plans to fix maximum price

Indian government said that it has no plans to put a ceiling on maximum price of NR in the wake of spurt in natural rubber prices due to disruption in rubber production and supply.

Minister of Commerce and Industry Anand Sharma said the tyre manufacturers had averred that there was a shortage of natural rubber and demanded a ceiling on the maximum price of natural rubber, but the government is of the view that fixation of any maximum price of natural rubber may not be desirable, keeping in view interests of all stakeholders and sustainable existence of the rubber sector as a whole.


Read lot more in Rubber4U – 1st December 2010 issue

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Prices of NR likely to remain above Rs 200 a kg during the week

Natural rubber prices in Kottayam market have surged to a record high of Rs 200 per kg on Diwali, and are likely to trade at that level due to disruption of rubber production as continuous rain has been affecting the rubber production.

The surge in international prices of rubber was also fueling the domestic prices.

According to Indian Meteorological Department forecast, Kerala may get more rain in next three-four days, which in turn will increase the concerns of production shortage.

U.S. crude oil for December delivery touched a 2-year high above $87 a barrel before settling near $86.85 for the week. The commodity was up $5.42 or 6.6% in the week.

India's October industrial production data is also scheduled for next week. Any sign of increased demand for raw materials from Asia-Pacific's major growth engines will further increase the risk appetite and push up commodity prices.

In coming days, currency market reaction to developments at G-20 summit in Korea will likely guide the commodities.

Read lotmore in Rubber4U – 15th November  2010 issue

Friday, November 5, 2010

NR production down by 7.6% and import up by 81.2%

According to a statement released by Rubber Board, India’s natural rubber production declined by 7.6% to 82,000 tonnes during the month of October 2010, when compared to the same period of previous year which stood at 88,775 tonnes. The decrease in production was due to the excessive rain during the month of October.

The cumulative production of rubber during the first seven months (April-October) of current fiscal grew by 4.5% to 437,400 tonnes.

Disruption of production in Kerala, key rubber growing state, has led to a shortage to tune of 30% which was met through imports.

Natural rubber imports jumped by 81.2% to 18,148 tonnes in October on account of increased demand from tyre manufacturers and disruption in domestic production.

The import of natural rubber during the first seven month (April-October period) of current fiscal grew marginally to 132,724 tonnes against 132,106 tonnes in the comparable period last fiscal.

Natural rubber consumption during October 2010 grew by 4.5% to 81,500 tonnes as against 77,950 tonnes in the same period of last year, on increased demand from the tyre manufacturers.

The aggregate consumption of the natural rubber in the first seven month (April-October period) of current fiscal grew by 3% to 550,550 tonnes against 534,315 tonnes in the comparable period last year.

As on 5th November 2010 the natural rubber (RSS4) has reached a peak of Rs. 200/- per kg at Kottayam - Kerala, India.

Read lotmore in Rubber4U – 15th November  2010 issue

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Rubber climbs to highest level on supply concerns

At TOCOM rubber futures advanced to 27 month high on speculation that China will increase purchases to stock up rubber, on concern over declining supplies due to floods and heavy rains.

On Tokyo Commodity Exchange, the April 2011 delivery contract, which was listed today, climbed to 343.3 yen per kg - the highest level since 14th July 2008, before closing at 340.3 yen per kg.

Natural rubber inventories remain at a low level, prompting buyers to step up purchases. Floods in Thailand and China also raised concerns that production may be damaged, reducing to limited supplies to the market.

Natural rubber imports by China jumped 19% from a month earlier to 190,000 tonnes in September as the country’s passenger car sales to dealerships quickened from August on additional incentives for buyers.

Rubber Future Trade at TOCOM as on 26th October 2010 at 16:10 JST (In yen/kg)  

Month              Open    High     Low     Close

Nov 2010           330.4    332.2    327.8    327.8

Dec 2010          333.0    333.9    328.5    330.6

Jan 2011           336.0    337.3    331.4    334.7

Feb 2011           337.9    339.3    332.9    336.7

Mar 2011           340.0    341.4    335.0    338.9

Apr 2011           342.0    343.3    336.9    340.3

Read lot more in Rubber4U – 1st November 2010 issue

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Sajen Peter - the new Chairman of ANRPC

Sajen Peter – the Indian Rubber Board chairman has been elected as the new chairman of the Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries (ANRPC) by its Assembly held in Kochi – Kerala, during the closing session of the Assembly on 8th October 2010.

After joining the Indian Administrative Service in 1982 and serving government of Kerala in several senior posts. Sajen Peter took over as Rubber Board chairman in 2005.

ANRPC is an intergovernmental organisation established in 1970 and has at present 11 member countries viz., Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam. The member countries of the Association account for around 92% of natural rubber production in the world. 

Read lot more in Rubber4U – 15th October 2010 issue

Monday, September 13, 2010

Government to rectify import duty disparity

"Give me a month's time, we are trying to sort out the problem of inverted duty structure, said Commerce Secretary - Dr. Rahul Khullar, on the sidelines of a CII event.

Tyre makers had called for a import duty cut to 7.5% as booming automobile sales drive a sharp rise in rubber demand and imports. The government is not likely to concede the industry's demand of bringing rubber import duty to 7.5%, but there may be a ceiling of Rs. 20.46 per kg.

Rubber prices may start moving towards north on increased buying from tyre manufacturers who kept themselves in the sidelines following the government proposal to cap import duty at Rs 20.46 per kg. However, seller resistance has forced the tyre makers to enter the market again.

India, the world's fourth biggest rubber producer, imported 75,042 tonnes during April to August this year, mainly from Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia. India is likely to produce 893,000 tonnes of rubber, while its consumption is pegged at 978,000 tonnes in 2010-11.

Read lot more in Rubber4U – 15th September 2010 issue