Soybean Oil imports to rise on lower domestic oilseeds crushing

For the period under consideration, total edible oil imports fell 5.4% to 4.25 million tons as against 4.49 million tons in the corresponding period of last year, SEA data showed.

NEW DELHI (Commodity Online): Soybean oil imports by India this marketing year is likely to cross 1.5 million tons or 15 lakh tons due to lower domestic oilseeds crushing. Soybean oil imports during November 2013 to March 2014 rose by 112% to 5,28,286 tons compared to 2,48,728 tons imported during corresponding period of last year, the data from Solvent Extractors Association (SEA) showed.

For the period under consideration, total edible oil imports fell 5.4% to 4.25 million tons as against 4.49 million tons in the corresponding period of last year, SEA data showed.

For this year, soybean oil production is likely to be lower by around 8% as per COOIT’s estimate. “We believe this would lead to more imports as consumption is steadily growing. For the rest of the period, we expect imports to be around 1 MMT, taking marketing year imports to 1.5 MMT”, Mr. Raju Choksi, Vice-President (Agri-Commodities), Anil Nutrients Ltd. said.

Mr. Choksi said another reason for rise in imports of soybean oil is rise in palm oil prices, which contributes to more than 70% of total edible oil imports in the country. “Since last month, the spread between palm oil and soybean oil has gone down significantly, thereby encouraging soybean oil imports over palm oil” , Mr. Choksi added.

According to rabi estimate of COOIT (Central Organization for Oil Industry & Trade) for 2013-14 season, 89.8 MT of soybean will be available for crushing as compared to 97 MT that was available last year. As per second advance estimates of Government, soybean production this year is estimated at 12.45 million tonnes against 14.67 million tonnes in 2012-13.

Market update
Soybean futures are on the run for the past three months due to lower availability of the oilseed along with strength in overseas markets. Concerns of emergence of El-Nino for the 2014 monsoon season and shortage of seeds for kharif 2014 sowing has added further fuel to the already rising prices, Angel Commodities said.

The Ministry of Agriculture in its 2nd Advance Estimates, projected 2013-14 soybean output at 12.45 mn tn as against 14.67 mn tn in 2012-13.

Soy meal exports have declined in the marketing year 2013-14. According to SEA, Soy meal exports declined 19% to 2.78 mn tn y-o-y due to lower availability for crushing as well as poor demand due to unattractive Indian price quotes for the foreign buyers.

CBOT Soybean Futures corrected from higher levels on profit taking coupled with improving planting weather in the US Midwest and settled 1.01% lower on Monday. Prices gained last week on tight supplies coupled with export demand and higher crushing. According to NOPA, soybean crushing in March was reported at 153.840 mn
bushels, above expectations of 146.1 mn bushels.

The USDA monthly report forecast 2013-14 end stocks sharply lower at 135 mn bsh against market estimates of 138.591 mn bsh and previous month’s forecast of 145 mn bsh. The report forecast Brazil output at 87.5 mn tn against estimates of 87.43 mn tn and Argentina at 54 mn tn. The USDA planting intention report showed higher area to be
covered under soy beans for 2014-15 at a record high 81.493 mn acres.

International markets have remained strong since February supported by strong export demand for the bean as well as meal

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