Natural rubber price hits new high

May 7th, 2008 - 11:25 pm ICT by admin  

Kozhikode, May 7 (IANS) The price of natural rubber touched Rs.120 per kilogram Wednesday in Kochi, the highest price recorded so far for the RSS-4 (Ribbed Smoked Sheet-4) grade in the Indian market. The other grades of natural rubber also recorded corresponding increase in prices Wednesday. “The price of rubber was moving in tandem with the crude prices as the synthetic rubber is manufactured from crude oil. We think the prices will harden further,” a senior official in the Rubber Board told IANS requesting anonymity.

Before the current season, the highest price for rubber was Rs.115 per kilogram, recorded in May 2006.

The Rubber Board, headquartered in Kottayam in Kerala, is a statutory body created under the central government for overall development in the rubber industry.

In the rubber market, difference between international and Indian prices was common. Earlier, the international prices used to remain higher than Indian prices, but now the situation is changing.

According to the official, the country held a stock of 153,000 tonnes of rubber at April-end. This included the stock held by manufacturers, processors, dealers and growers.

“People may be wondering why the rubber price is rising when there is such a huge stock. But the fact is that only 50 percent of the stock remains with manufacturers and processors. The rest is with dealers and growers,” he said.

Though the heavy summer rains this year ushered in early rubber tapping season in Kerala, it did not help much in raising rubber production as two bouts of leaf fall disease affected production, the officials added.

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