ERJ staff report (PR)
Antwerp, Belgium – Belgian agro-industrial company SIPEF has reported continued weakening in natural rubber prices but sees signs of recovery further down the line.
In an interim statement for the first quarter to 31 March, SIPEF said the rubber market had remained on a downtrend trend, with prices for Sicom RSS3 falling from $2,500 (€1,800) to $2,100 (€1,514) per tonne.
Moreover, SIPEF sold 41 percent of the rubber volumes at an average price of $2,179 (€1,571) per tonne FOB – a decrease of 28.7 percent compared to the price obtained until April of last year.
“The market place is filled with stocks and the lacklustre macro-economic picture of China will remain a burden to the natural rubber market,” the company said.
The Belgian group did, however, see “some light at the end of the tunnel” in the shape of improving economic environments in the EU and US.
“Correspondingly we see better car sales globally, but the rubber market is still very much depending on the Chinese demand, which has not come alive yet,” it said.
To overcome low market prices, SIPEF said it is striving to increase yields at its own plantations as well as to increase third party purchases at our rubber activities in Papua New Guinea.