New Delhi: Asian importers purchased about 100,000 tonnes of wheat from the United States this week, taking advantage lower global prices, while Nepal and Bangladesh bought some corn cargoes from India.
“For Asian buyers, the US wheat costs $460 per tonne, cost and freight against $480 per tonne for Australian wheat,” the trader said over phone from Singapore.
Global wheat prices have been lower for most of the week and faced added pressure from a new 7.4-magnitude earthquake in Japan. On, Thursday, CBOT May wheat closed down 9 cents at $7.73-1/4.
Regional cash prices were higher. Australia’s prime wheat was offered at $400 a tonne, free on board, a gain of $50 from last week. Australian standard wheat was quoted at $390 a tonne.
US standard white wheat was at $380 per tonne, dark northern spring wheat at $467 and hard red winter at $430.
Vietnam resumed imports from India after a row over quality, buying up to 50,000 tonnes of soymeal from the leading exporter for Southeast Asia.
Nepal has just placed an order for around 100,000 tonnes of corn from the eastern state of Bihar, while Bangladesh bought an additional 150,000 tonnes of the grain.
India, a key supplier of corn to southeast Asia, is likely to export 2.8 million tonnes in the year from October, sharply up from about 700,000 tonnes in 2009-10.
India has already exported 1.8 million tonnes of corn this year, said Amit Sachdev, India representative of the US Grains Council.
Traders say prices of Indian corn is still attractive for southeast Asian buyers.
Indian corn was sat around $325 per tonne, including cost and freight against $335 quoted for rival South American cargoes, they said.
Weaker dollar and expectations of a further drop in corn inventories in the US, the world’s top exporter, have helped benchmark Chicago prices scale new peaks.
Chicago corn prices gained more than 15% since 31 March when the release of a US government report showing critically low corn stocks sparked a rally that catapulted corn to record levels on Tuesday and Thursday.