India, Thailand sugar crops looking better than expected, says Wilmar

Credit: REUTERS/STAFF

By Marcelo Teixeira

NEW YORK, March 1 (Reuters) - Sugar crops in India and Thailand, two main Asian producers, are looking better in the final stages of the sugarcane harvesting, indicating higher sugar supplies in the region, said Singapore-based commodities trader Wilmar on Friday.

"Thailand tail crop is much better than expected," said Karim Salamon, head of sugar analysis at Wilmar, in comments sent to Reuters.

He expects the sugarcane crush in Thailand to reach as much as 85 million metric tons, with sugar production between 8.5 million and 9 million tons.

"It is more than 1 million tons additional sugar compared to most previsions only three weeks ago. With such crop, Far-East S&D (supply and demand) is balanced," he said.

Salamon said India's crop was on track to surprise on the upside, adding that 462 mills were still operating in the country compared to 441 mills at this time last year.

"Despite lower monsoon in summer 2023, Indian sugar production will be above 32.5 million tons and highly likely over 33 million tons, nearly same as last year," he said.

Wilmar's analyst said the new Brazil sugar season, that starts in April, could be as large as the previous, which saw record production, despite drier-than-normal weather.

He believes that new investment to expand production capacity in the country will result in between 42.5 million and 44.5 million tons of sugar in 2024/25.

"Brazilian (sugar) industry is on track to beat new record of crystallization year after year," he said.

(Reporting by Marcelo Teixeira; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)

((marcelo.teixeira@tr.com; +1 332 220 8062; Reuters Messaging: marcelo.teixeira.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net - https://twitter.com/tx_marcelo))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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