JAKARTA, Indonesia (Nov. 15)—Government ministers from Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia—the world's three largest producers of natural rubber—will meet Dec. 12 in Bali to complete a joint plan to cut rubber production and boost world prices. Malaysia and Thailand have discussed such a plan since dropping out of the now-defunct International Natural Rubber Organization in 1999, and later brought Indonesia into the fold. The "tremendous number of smallholders" producing rubber in Southeast Asia makes the effectiveness of a tripartite price control scheme questionable, according to Lou Mucciolo, senior vice president of the Alan L. Grant Division of Imperial Commodities Corp. in New York. "To bring up prices, the plan makes a lot of sense," he said. "But take OPEC and multiply it by a thousand members, and you have an idea what this will be like."
Big Three NR producers to meet on pact Dec. 12
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