Higher production in India may weigh on benchmark rubber prices in Tokyo that have fallen 7.6% this year amid concern that slowing economies may curb car sales and weaken demand for the commodity. Rubber reached a record 313.30 yen a kilogram ($2,941 a tonne) on December 27. Production in January could be an all-time high as growers were able to extend tapping because of the cold climate, Sajen Peter, chairman of the Kottayam-based board, said.
Imports by MRF Ltd. and Apollo Tyres Ltd., may almost halve to 5,200 tonne in January because of increased local production, according to a Rubber Board estimate. Rubber output fell 6.4% to 619,850 tonne between April and December, while consumption rose 4.7% to 640,435 tonne in the same period, Chandran said.