Mar 22, 2008

Commodity News 22nd March 2008

Instant coffee exports rise by 5.5% in Jan-Feb

Bangalore: Instant coffee exports for the first-two months of 2008 has gone up by 5.48 per cent at 15,125 tonnes compared with 14,338 tonnes a year ago. Instant coffee provisional re-exports touched 6,868 tonnes as against 4,758 tonnes in the same period last year, according to Coffee Board statistics. Robusta coffee is used extensively in the preparation of instant coffee. Russian Federation and other East European countries are major buyers of instant coffee from India. During January and February, nearly 8,000 tonnes were exported to these countries. Tata Coffee has a significant portion of its revenues coming from these markets through instant coffee sales. As of March 13, the total coffee exports stood at 49,676 tonnes, of which Arabica Parchment constituted 10,728 tonnes (last year 7,834 tonnes), Arabica Cherry 2,771 tonnes (3,882 tonnes), Robusta Parchment 2,656 tonnes (3007 tonnes) and Robusta Cherry 18,396 tonnes (21,514 tonnes). According to coffee exporters, domestic prices have appreciated by 20-25 per cent in the last two months. Ecom Gill Coffee Trading, Allana Sons and Hindustan Unilever (HUL) are active on the exports front. In rupee terms, the country's coffee exports grew 21.38 per cent to Rs 498.68 crore in 2008 as against Rs 410.82 crore in 2007. In dollar terms, it is 25.12 per cent higher at $121.82 million in 2008 as against $97.36 million in 2007. Italy continues to top the list of importing countries with 11,094.9 tonnes (Arabica 2,981.8 tonnes and Robusta 8,113.1 tonnes), followed by Russian Federation 5,771 tonnes (245.6 and 5,525.4 ), Germany 3,777.5 tonnes (2,702.5 and 1,075 ), Belgium 3,487.3 tonnes (1,724.7 and 1,762.6 ) and Finland 2,388.6 (nil and 2,388.6).


Rubber sees steady trend

Kottayam: Spot rubber finished steady on March 17. There were no active sellers or purchasers in the main marketing centres to set a specific trend and most of the traders seemed to be falling in to a holyday mood with only a few more days to Easter. RSS 4 closed unchanged at Rs 105 and Rs 105. The grade closed better by 48 paise at Rs 113.96 (113.48 ) a kg at Bangkok. On NMCE, the April futures fell to Rs 105.20 (106.08), May to Rs 107.50 (108.27), June to Rs 109.07 (109.87) and July futures to Rs 110.90 ( 111) per kg for RSS 4.The open interest was 4,180 (4,340) tonnes with 2,394 (2,444) tonnes in April, 1,059 (1,032) tonnes in May, 686 (660) tonnes in June and 41 tonnes in July. The volumes amounted 877 (660) tonnes. Spot prices were (Rs/kg): RSS-4: 105 (105); RSS-5: 102.50 (102.50); ungraded: 100 (100); ISNR 20: 102 (102) and latex 60 per cent: 71.50 (71.50).


Jeera futures witnesses 3-month low on fresh arrivals

Mumbai: On March 17, jeera futures witnessed their lowest so far in 2008, falling below Rs 9,000 a quintal. The arrivals, which a fortnight back were hovering around 10,000-12,000 bags (each of 55 kg), were reported at 20,000 bags on Monday in Unjha (main delivery centre) in Gujarat. Supply of fresh jeera is expected to continue for another month. On the spot front, the last one week has seen prices of jeera dropping from Rs 9,500-10,000 a quintal to Rs 8,750-9,250 a quintal. The April contract on the National Commodity and Derivatives Exchange (Ncdex) has already broken the crucial support at Rs 8,850 a quintal. On NCDEX, the April jeera futures closed at Rs 8,664 a quintal, down 4 per cent from its previous close of Rs 9,025 a quintal.


Edible oil imports go up by 186-pc

Mumbai: Inspite of almost double increase in prices of edible oils globally, imports in February went up a huge 186 per cent year-on-year riding on lower customs duties on palm and soy oils and base import prices which have remained unchanged for over a year. During February, the import of edible oils touched 430,992 tonnes as compared with 150,927 tonnes in February last year. Conversely, imports of non-edible oils shot up by 342 per cent at 84,237 tonnes as against last year's 19,056 tonnes. Forty per cent of the country's domestic requirement is met via by imports. With increasing salaries and high disposable incomes, the consumption has witnessed a surge in demand of vegetable oils. Domestic prices of edible oil have increased 10-28 per cent since January, 2008. Refined soybean oil, which was quoted at Rs 54,000 a tonne on 2 January, is available at Rs 69,000 a tonne, up 27.78 per cent. Similarly, prices of groundnut oil have jumped 13.08 per cent, rapeseed (10.34 per cent), RBD Palmolene (25.10 per cent) and sunflower oil (19.69 per cent). Since November, 2007, the imports of vegetable oils (edible and non-edible together) have gone up by 40 per cent. This is despite the fact that the peak domestic crushing season is in progress.