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China’s soybean imports from Brazil plunge in August – customs

China’s soybean imports from Brazil plunged in August from a year ago, customs data showed on Tuesday, as high prices capped purchases of the oilseed from the South American nation.

Imports from smaller suppliers such as Uruguay and the United States both increased, however.

China, the world’s biggest soybean buyer, imported 6.25 million tonnes of the oilseed from Brazil in August, down from 9.04 million tonnes a year earlier, data from the General Administration of Customs showed.

Total imports last month plunged 25 per cent from a year before to 7.17 million tonnes, the lowest for August since 2014, as high global prices and weak demand curbed appetite for the oilseed, customs data showed earlier.

Summer arrivals are typically dominated by Brazilian origin beans, but bad weather pushed up prices of the oilseed in the South American country at a time when Chinese demand was poor.

Demand for soymeal from the feed sector has been weak after hog farmers suffered huge losses earlier this year.

Arrivals from the United States, China’s No. 2 supplier, reached 286,762 tonnes, up from 17,575 tonnes in the same month last year, according to customs data.

China also imported 350,342 tonnes from Uruguay and 197,770 tonnes from Argentina in August, compared with zero cargoes from either a year ago.

Imports from Argentina, the world’s No.3 supplier, are expected to jump in the coming months, however, after the country offered an exchange rate incentive to farmers during September to boost exports.

Farmers sold 15 per cent of the country’s 2021/22 soybean crop in the seven days following the incentive, the Rosario grains exchange said last week.

China last week bought more than 10 cargoes from Argentina for October and November shipment, Shanghai-based consultancy Sitonia Consulting said in a note.

For the first eight months of the year, China brought in 40.93 million tonnes of Brazilian beans, down from 43.05 million tonnes in the same period of 2021.

Imports from the United States for January to August came in at 18.21 million tonnes, down from 21.63 million tonnes the previous year.
Source: Reuters

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