Decline in Indian sugar output not to affect world supplies

Mumbai, Nov 28 | Updated: Nov 29 2004, 05:30am hrs
It takes three mighty countries to take on India in the sugar sector. The expected decline in Indian sugar production would have led to a huge dent in global sugar supplies had it not been for increased production in Brazil, China and Australia.

According to USDA, the world sugar production for the 2004-05 marketing year is estimated at 141.7 million tonne, raw value, down slightly from the May forecast, while world consumption is lowered 1% to 140.5 million tonne. A decline in Indias production prospects has been offset by an increase for Brazil, China, and Australia.

World production for 2004-05 equals the previous years revised estimate of 141.7 million tonne, while consumption is up 1.3 million tonne from a year earlier. Exports are estimated at 45.7 million tonne, up 132,000 tonne, and ending stocks are estimated at 31.7 million tonne, down 4.8 million tonne. Increases in 2004-05 world production and trade are mainly due to higher production in Brazil, up 2 million tonne, Australia, up 500,000 tonne, and China, up 400,000 tonne. Production in Thailand is estimated at 6.5 million tonne, down almost 500,000 tonne from 2003-04.

Over the period, 2002-03 through estimated 2004-05, Brazil and India have experienced the most dramatic changes in production and trade. In 2002-03, India produced a record 22.1 million tonne of sugar, imported a negligible quantity, and exported 1.4 million tonne.

For 2004-05, Indias production is 13.6 million tonne and imports are 1.8 million tonne. Ending stocks are estimated at 4.7 million tonne, down from 12.4 million tonne two years ago.

Since 2002-03, Brazils sugar production has increased by 4.6 million tonne to total 28.4 million tonne, accounting for 20% of world production. Brazils exports of 18.1 million tonne in 2004-05, are up 4.1 million tonne from 2002-03 and account for nearly 40% of world exports.

In 2002-03, Brazils ending stocks were only 270,000 tonne, representing 1% of total disappearance (exports plus consumption). Ending stocks for 2004-05 are 1.3 million tonne, nearly 4% of disappearance.