02 April 2008 19:01 [Source: ICIS news]
BUENOS AIRES (ICIS news)--Argentina’s fertilizer market remains paralised as striking farm workers nationwide planned to meet again on Wednesday amid hopes from fertilizer producers that the dispute would be resolved soon.
The farmers have been on strike for more than 20 days against an increase on export taxes.
Since March has been historically the month with the lowest amount of demand of fertilizers anyway, the impact of the strike has not yet become significant in terms of annual sales, according to Jorge Bassi, marketing manager for the fertilizers division of Petrobras.
Demand in March typically represents around 3% of the sales for the full year, Bassi said.
Argentina's President Cristina Kirchner, has been seeking to calm down the small producers by announcing benefits to logistics companies that would lower the cost of transporting farm goods.
As the government struggles to appease the striking workers with incentives aimed at soy and sunflower producers who work on farms smaller than 500 hectares, the proposal to contain fertilizer prices has virtually fallen off the radar, industry sources said. An agreement signed by the government 18 March to reduce fertilizer prices 20% failed to end the strike.
Industry sources confirmed that due to the strike there were no sales during the previous week and the fertilizers market in ?xml:namespace>
Representatives of the farmers associations will meet again today to plot their next move.
Meanwhile, retailers in the capital city of
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