Friday , May 24 2024

Fertilizer imports dip, but cost 55 pct more on global disruption

Fertilizer imports fell 7.8 percent year-on-year in March to 320,000 tons, but they cost 55.8 percent more at US$127.6 million, according to the Center for Informatics and Statistics.

The imports were mainly from China (32.7 percent), Russia (13.8 percent) and Belarus (10.8 percent), it added.

They declined after Russia’s trade ministry recommended suspension of fertilizer exports last month due to obstacles created by foreign transportation companies.

Russia holds between 15 percent and 18 percent of the global potash, ammonia and urea markets, according to various sources.

Urea prices have surged on fear of supply constraints as Russia has threatened to halt gas delivery via the Nord Stream 1 while China has yet to restore production due to its coal shortage.

Insiders believed that China’s coal shortage may worsen in the near future as its second largest exporter of coal, Russia, has been removed from the SWIFT payments system, causing disruptions in transactions.

Urea prices peaked in March at over $470 per ton, but SSI Securities forecast they would start falling from June after China eases fertilizer export limits.

In Vietnam, urea prices increased by 5-8 percent last month.

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