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Thursday, August 11, 2022

Industry to shore up rubber price

Local industries have agreed to buy more rubber to shore up the price of the local commodity, while asking the government to rev up talks with China to help delay its new regime on imported compound rubber which will be effective early next year.

The positive effect of the purchase by the private sector is expected to become clearly visible early next year, according to Luckchai Kittipol, honorary president of the Thai Rubber Association, after the meeting with Commerce Minister Gen Chatchai Sarikulya.

The private sector also agreed to boost shipments of rubber and rubber products.

Mr Luckchai said rubber operators from each cluster would convene next week to discuss the issue as well as laws and regulations that are deemed obstacles for the rubber business.

He said the local rubber price was likely to bottom out and pick up after the government pledged to take care of rubber prices and industry officials from Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia and Cambodia and the International Rubber Consortium agreed last week to refrain from selling block rubber below US$1,500 a tonne.

Anan Pruksanusak, managing director of Siam Sempermed Corporation, said Thailand’s rubber production, totalling more than 4 million tonnes, exceeded local consumption which is only 500,000-600,000 tonnes.

He believes if the government succeeds in promoting the use of rubber domestically by more than 500,000 tonnes, it will help shore up the local price to about 60 baht per kilogramme.

The private sector at the meeting also expressed concerns about China’s decision to introduce on Jan 1, 2015 a new regime for compound rubber, a cheaper alternative made from a mixture of natural
and synthetic materials. Thai compound rubber makers are unlikely to adjust their production to meet the new requirement in time.

Natural rubber now accounts for 95% of compound rubber, but the new regime will lower the mixture of natural rubber in the compound.

Last year, Thailand shipped 769,500 tonnes of compound rubber, representing 18.5% of the country’s total rubber exports. The shipments were worth $2 billion.

For the first seven months, compound rubber shipments totalled 413,000 tonnes.

– Bangkok Post

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