Higher potash prices almost fully established in Asian markets

01 June 2011 17:43  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Canada-based potash fertilizer supplier Canpotex has sold 400,000 tonnes of muriate of potash (MOP) into Asian spot markets at higher international prices, the company said on Wednesday.

Business was concluded at $510/tonne (€352/tonne) CFR (cost & freight) for standard MOP, while granular MOP was sold at $525/tonne CFR.

This indicates higher international prices are nearly fully established in the Asian and South East Asian markets.

These price levels were initially offered by major international exporters Canpotex and the Belarusian Potash Company (BPC) in March.

Certain nations, such as Brazil, were quick to accept the new prices based on robust demand for the soil nutrient and high crop-commodity prices. However, certain markets in the South East Asia region have been slower to accept the increases.

One European producer says Vietnam and Malaysia have been particularly resistant to price increases because of weaker domestic demand.

Additionally, many of the smaller countries in South East Asia have had consistent potash availability in the first half of 2011 because of incoming potash shipments secured via contracts settled earlier at lower prices.

Market players predict all Asian markets will fully accept the current international price levels by mid-June, particularly as BPC earlier this week announced its intentions to boost prices further. 

Spot prices to Brazil are now being offered at an additional $30/tonne CFR, although no significant sales have been concluded at prices around $550–560/tonne CFR.

Canpotex is the world’s largest potash exporter, with average sales up to 9m tonnes/year. It is owned by potash producers Agrium, Mosaic and the Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan.

($1 = €0.69)

For more information on potash and fertilizers, visit ICIS Pricing Fertilizers

By: Lauren Williamson
+44 (0) 20 8652 3214

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