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Signs of Natural Rubber Demand Returning

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Natural rubber production in the region represented by the Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries – Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam – is expected to rise 3% this year to 10.645 million tonnes. The ANRPC region, which accounts for 93% of the world’s natural rubber production, is expected to achieve this increase despite adverse weather reported in northern Sumatra of Indonesia, Malaysia, India and parts of Thailand during the second quarter of 2013. The largest producers by a wide margin will once again be Thailand and Indonesia, who will account for an estimated 3.569 million tonnes and 3.013 million tonnes respectively.

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On the demand side of the equation, the economy in the European Union ended a six-quarter slide in the second quarter of 2013 and this, coupled with China’s accelerated growth of 7.8% in the third quarter, has put to rest fears of a sharp slowdown in demand resulting from the US government shutdown; the ANRPC says however that the full effect of the shutdown may not be known for many months. At the same time, a slowdown in major economies saw a reduction in demand, but the situation has not derailed natural rubber exports from producing countries. (Tyres & Accessories)

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