KUALA LUMPUR (Oct. 27, 2011)—Demand for natural rubber supplied by the 11 members of the Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries will rise about 2.6 percent for the year, while production will increase 6 percent, according to a report by the organization.
The sluggish global economy is affecting the NR market, according to Kamarul Baharain Basier, secretary general of the ANRPC. “Almost every day we are hearing disturbing economic news from various regions and sectors,” he said in the association's monthly “Natural Rubber Trends and Statistics” report.
The report said demand for NR from China, India and Malaysia—which together account for 45 percent of global consumption—is expected to grow by only 0.7 percent this year compared to 4.7 percent in 2010.
Thailand is forecast to produce 3.38 million metric tons of NR this year and Malaysia 1 million tons.
Basier noted China's third-quarter GDP slowed to 9.1 percent from 9.5 percent in the second-quarter, and the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers now expects the nation's auto sales to rise 3 percent for 2011, compared with earlier forecasts of as much as 15 percent.
Both developments weigh on prices of NR, he said.