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 China March Natural Rubber Imports

China’s NR imports in March declined by 0.3% from a year before to 193,829 metric tones, according to figures released by the Chinese General Administration of Customs. In contrast, import data showed an increase of 55% in February from 125,165 metric tonnes in the same month the previous year.

Overall, the total of China’s import of natural rubber during the first three months was 490,452 metric tonnes, an increase of 30% compared with the same period in the previous year. The main reason contributing to the huge increase in import was the lower domestic production caused by severe drought in the two major producing areas in the Hainan and Yunnan provinces.

It was estimated that this severe drought would reduce China’s natural production in 2010 by 20,000 tonnes. There was then the booming demand especially from the robust auto industry where car sales rose 56% in March compared to a year before. To lower the pressure of shortage in domestic supply, as well as the high prices, the Chinese government on 14 April released 30,000 tonnes of natural rubber from its reserves and will sell another 30,000 tonnes on 23 April. The Chinese government had last yea built up a reserve of natural rubber up to 105,000 bought from its domestic producers. – IRCo.