China: Imports of Brazilian soybean drop 10 pct in first nine months

26 December 2007

Beijing, China, 26 Dec – China imported 8.43 million tons of soybean from Brazil in the first nine months of this year, a reduction of 10.1 percent in a year-on-year comparison, according to figures from Beijing’s customs services.

Some 99.1 percent of soybean imported to China comes from the American continent. Imports from Brazil and Argentina have fallen, while imports from the United States have risen.

Imports of US soybean to China stood at 8.22 million tons in the first three-quarters of 2007, up 23.4 percent. Argentinean exports of soybean to China in the same period dropped by 0.1 percent to 4.85 million tons.

China’s imports of soybean in this period totaled 21.7 million tons, up 2.1 percent compared to the same months in 2006.

The value of these imports rose by 32.5 percent to US$ 7.36 billion at an average price per ton of US$ 339.8 (up 29.8 percent from 2006).

Sources in Chinese customs say the increase in soybean prices is due to increased demand, lower production and high transport costs worldwide.

It is estimated that China’s cereal production will reach 501.5 million tons this year, falling short of the 527.5 million tons that the country is expected to consume, according to official Beijing forecasts published this month. (macauhub)