Natural rubber production set for 9% drop, recovery in sight for 2021

Kuala Lumpur – Global production of natural rubber (NR) is set to fall 9% to just under 12.6 million tonnes in 2020, according to the latest figures published by the Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries (ANRPC).

The revised outlook, published 14 Dec, is 2.2% or 304,000 tonnes lower than ANRPC’s projections published in September, reflecting the impact of “climatic change, extreme weather, and leaf diseases” on output in major producing countries.

In 2021, said the ANRPC update, production is anticipated to recover by 8.6% to 13.678 million tonnes, but will remain lower than the 2019 level of 13.842 million tonnes.

As for NR consumption, the association expects global demand to fall 6.9% to 12.8 million tonnes in 2021, reflecting an 8.6% year-over-year decline in the first 10 months of the year and a 1.2% increase during November and December.

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The revised outlook is 200,000 tonnes or 1.5% higher than ANRPC’s September projections, driven by the “higher-than-previously-expected” economic performance in China and India.

For the year 2021, demand is set to recover by 4.90% rate to 13.436 million tonnes, still remaining below the 2019 consumption level of 13.768 million tonnes, according to ANRPC.