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10. October 2006

VIETNAM: Export prices for rubber expected to bounce back

Source: Daily "Vietnam News", Hanoi; 10 Oct 2006

Rubber export prices will rebound in the remaining
months of the year despite a recent drop in prices,
according to the Ministry of Trade’s Trade Information
Centre.

The export price of Vietnamese rubber is currently
US$1,900-$2,000 per tonne, compared to $2,800 only a
month ago.

World demand for rubber would increase 6 per cent in
the remainder of the year, according to the
International Rubber Study Group, largely due to
tightening supplies and higher demand for rubber
imports in the US, China, Europe and other major
markets.

China, the leading importer of Vietnamese rubber,
would continue importing at large volumes for at least
another three years, the study group predicted. In
August alone, around 100 tonnes of rubber were
exported to the Chinese market daily, sold to 40
different import enterprises. Export volumes to
Guangdong and Guangxi provinces surged 50 per cent
during the month.

If rubber prices continued to fall, international
rubber organisations and alliances would interfere to
protect producers.

Leading rubber producers, including Indonesia,
Thailand and Malaysia, recently met in Bangkok to
gauge the situation. These three nations alone have a
total rubber output of 6.4 million tonnes per year,
accounting for nearly 70 per cent of the world ‘s
natural rubber output. At their Bangkok meeting, they
decided to cut output by 4 per cent of their
production and exports by 10 per cent if rubber prices
fell below $1.30 per kilogram.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development said
that in the first nine months of this year rubber
export value reached $875 million, an increase of 97
per cent over the same period last year.

The Ministry expected that rubber might soon rank in
Viet Nam ‘s top nine exports items, with an export
turnover of over $1 billion per year.



(Syed Rashid Ali, Karachi, Pakistan)

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