The Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries (ANRPC) has stated that, despite several negative factors, world production of NR is expected to outstrip consumption by 198,000 tonnes in 2019.

“As a result of unattractive prices, poor demand from China, fungal diseases and unfavourable weather conditions, the world production of NR is anticipated to increase only by 0.2 per cent to 13.897 million tonnes in 2019, lower than the earlier estimate of 14.073 million tonnes,’’ media reports say quoting Jom Jacob, ANRPC senior economist.

Low off take in China and India, the top two rubber consuming countries, has scaled-down consumption for 2019. Based on the revised outlook, the world consumption is anticipated to fall 1.1 per cent from 2018 at 13.699 million
tonnes, he says, adding that as China accounts for 40% of the global consumption of NR, the US-China trade war and slowing economic activities in the country have greater implications. Meanwhile, unabated rains have hit tapping in India, which has entered the peak production phase.

The Rubber Board Chairman reckons that improved prices may prompt growers to tap more. The rubber prices at 125.50 per kg has increased 5% in the last one month and is higher vis-à-vis last year.

“ We are focusing on increasing output in non-traditional areas and timely re-plantation in traditional growing regions,’’ he says.
The economy worldwide is passing through difficult times and the economic horizon is overcast with uncertainty adversely affecting investor sentiment and consumer confidence.