New Delhi: The production of natural rubber rose by 6% to 57,000 tonnes in April as against 53,665 tonnes a year ago, according to the Rubber Board’s provisional data.
Meanwhile, natural rubber consumption grew by 13% to 74,000 tonnes in the first month of the current fiscal, compared to 65,350 tonnes in April 2007.
“Increase in tapped area led to growth in production. Tapping resumed at the start of the month due to intermittent rain,” a senior Rubber Board official said, adding that growth in consumption was seen in both tyre and non-tyre sectors.
The Rubber Board has also announced projections for the current fiscal. Natural rubber output, estimated at 8.75 lakh tonnes, is likely to fall short of consumption, which is pegged at 8.99 lakh tonnes in 2008-09.
In the 2007-08 fiscal, production of natural rubber fell 3% at 8.25 lakh tonnes from 8.52 lakh tonnes the previous fiscal. Production fell due to excessive rainfall and loss in tapping days due to viral disease during the first half of last fiscal.
Consumption, however, rose 5% at nearly 8.6 lakh tonnes during 2007-08 as against 8.2 lakh tonnes in the year-ago period.
Meanwhile, export of natural rubber rose to 3,049 tonnes in April, against 2,164 tonnes in the year-ago period, while import declined to 3,384 tonnes from 9,013 tonnes in the same period.
“Since domestic and global price are almost equal, there was least scope for export as well as import in April,” the official said.
The Rubber Board has pegged the exports and imports at 50,000 tonnes and 80,000 tonnes respectively for 2008-09 fiscal.
India exported 51,381 tonnes in 2007-08 as compared to 56,545 tonnes the previous fiscal. Imports stood at 87,219 tonnes against 89,699 tonnes.