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Bangladesh offers hope as corn exports to South-East Asia slow down

With corn (maize) costs rising within the home market attributable to demand from the poultry and starch sectors, its exports have slowed down, significantly to South-East Asia.

Components similar to unfold of Delta variant of Coronavirus in nations similar to Vietnam and Thailand and excessive freight prices have affected its shipments.

Nonetheless, exporters are actually focussing on Bangladesh as they get pleasure from freight benefit and are in a position to ship the consignments by numerous modes of transportation, merchants say.

Surge in freight charges

“We have now not achieved any shipments to South-East Asia for nearly a month now. The final we exported was a small amount at $320 (₹23,775) price and freight,” mentioned M Madan Prakash, President, Agri Commodities Exporters’ Affiliation (ACEA).

“We have been supplied corn for exports from Andhra Pradesh at ₹19,000 however it wasn’t possible given the surge in freight charges, significantly for containers,” mentioned Prakash, whose Chennai-based Rajathi Group exports agri-commodities similar to maize, onions and chilli.

Final month, corn costs surged larger than wheat costs for the primary time in a decade over fears that dry climate in Brazil and the US may have an effect on the crop. Nonetheless, since then, corn costs have retreated on low demand for feed, whereas wheat costs have elevated additional on low international output.

On Wednesday, the lively corn contract on the Chicago Board of Commerce was quoted at $5.42 a bushel (₹15,875 a tonne), off from a six-week low on the US crop being decrease than market expectations.

New Malaysia norms

“Corn exports have additionally been affected by Malaysia saying new specs from April. This enables entry just for established gamers, whereas others have gotten affected,” mentioned Mukesh Singh, Director, MuBala Agro Commodities Pvt Ltd.

A Delhi-based commerce analyst mentioned a serious motive for corn exports slowing down is the Covid shutdown in Vietnam and Thailand, which use the grain for feed functions.

“Brazil has additionally made a comeback on the corn entrance, making it robust for India,” he mentioned.

Singh mentioned this has resulted in Indian corn dropping its competitiveness in South-East Asia.

No takers for Pakistan’s low-priced corn in global market

In response to the Worldwide Grains Council, corn from Argentina is at present quoted at $236 (₹17,550) a tonne, whereas Brazil’s grain is obtainable at $270 (₹20,075) and US corn at $254 (₹18,875). Although corn costs are over 40 per cent larger year-on-year, they’re off their peaks seen this yr by 10-20 per cent.

Rise in native costs

Information from the Agricultural and Processed Meals Merchandise Export Improvement Authority (APEDA) present that Vietnam imported over 2.5 lakh tonnes (lt) of corn throughout April-Might this fiscal. The entire of final fiscal it had imported almost 5 lt.

Alternatively, costs within the home market have elevated by over ₹2,000 a tonne within the final couple of months, making it robust for exporters to be aggressive in markets similar to Vietnam and Thailand.

In response to the Ministry of Agriculture, corn costs at agricultural produce advertising committee (APMC) yards are at present ruling from ₹14,500 a tonne in Chhattisgarh to ₹18,000 in Uttar Pradesh.

The Centre mounted ₹18,500 a tonne as minimal help worth for corn final season (July 2020-June 2021). For the present season, it has been mounted at ₹18,700.

“We have been aggressive so long as home costs dominated beneath ₹16,500 a tonne. As soon as costs topped that degree, we have been outpriced,” mentioned Singh.

From Bihar to Bangladesh

However hope for corn exporters has come within the type of Bangladesh, which is importing an excellent amount from India. “We’re in a position to get corn at a aggressive worth from farmer producer organisation in Bihar, the place ample provides can be found. From there, it’s straightforward to move to Bangladesh,” the MuBala Agri Commodities official mentioned.

Corn is shipped by vans through India-Bangladesh borders, whereas some shipments are additionally despatched by rail.

“Not less than 150 vans laden with corn go to Bangladesh every single day as demand for feed in Bangladesh is excessive,” mentioned Singh. This could imply that over one lakh tonnes of corn are being despatched throughout the border each month.

“We can’t be aggressive if corn costs are above ₹18,500 a tonne,” he mentioned.

The poultry sector within the neighbouring nation is rising extra vibrant than India with its farmers vaccinating their birds towards endemics similar to avian influenza. In India, poultry farmers are nonetheless displaying reluctance to vaccinate their birds towards the menace.

Final fiscal, Bangladesh imported over 12 lt of corn from India. Throughout April-Might this yr, it purchased over one lt, in keeping with APEDA knowledge.

Starch sector

“There is no such thing as a drawback with regard to maize provide for home customers. We’re getting corn at a aggressive price and meet the great demand for starch within the export market,” mentioned Ankit Shah, Managing Director, Common Starch Chem Allied Ltd.

After the poultry business, the starch sector is the second greatest client of corn within the nation.

India’s booming corn exports amid global rally ease supply worries

“We have now demand even from China. However for container scarcity, we should always do properly,” Shah mentioned, including {that a} good crop in Bihar final yr has helped.

Corn exports have been aided by a document 31.51 million tonnes (mt) manufacturing final season in contrast with 28.77 mt throughout 2019-20. Throughout the present kharif season, the world underneath maize is up 1.8 per cent at 79.6 lakh hectares as on August 20.

https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/financial system/agri-business/bangladesh-offers-hope-as-corn-exports-to-south-east-asia-slow-down/article36094718.ece | Bangladesh affords hope as corn exports to South-East Asia decelerate

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