Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia Curbing Rubber Exports


4 February 2016, 10:29 SEAST


The world’s top three rubber producers are set to limit the amount of natural rubber exported from Mar. 1, in an effort to boost flagging prices.


Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand–which together produce around 70% of the world’s rubber and make up the International Tripartite Rubber Council–plan to reduce natural rubber exports from the three countries by 615,000 metric tons over the six month period starting Mar. 1 and ending Aug 31, the council said in a statement Thursday.


The three governments also intend to increase domestic consumption of natural rubber, the statement said.


The council has expressed concern on several occasions that the low price for natural rubber was directly hurting the incomes of smallholder rubber farmers in the three countries.


The council is attempting to reverse the fortunes of the agricultural commodity, the price of which has fallen 38% since June and in January hit its lowest level since March 2009, on concerns that China demand was slowing. It had rebounded slightly after the Thai cabinet resolved to buy around 100,000 metric tons of rubber at a premium.