Potash import impasse ends; Tata, Coromandel ink deal with Canpotex

Potash import impasse ends; Tata, Coromandel ink deal with Canpotex

New Delhi: Canpotex, the North American potash marketing consortium, has said it will sell 6.7 lakh tonnes of potash to Tata Chemicals and Coromandel International at a price of $470 per tonne.

The deal signals the end of the deadlock between Indian potash buyers and North American producers over the import price of the crop nutrient.

It also signifies the end of the potash “import holiday" declared by the Fertilizer Association of India (FAI) in April this year.

Canpotex is the international marketing and distribution arm of Saskatchewan (Canada)-based potash producers-- Agrium Inc, The Mosaic Company and Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan Inc (PotashCorp).

“Canpotex Limited (Canpotex) has signed a contract with its long-term Indian contract customers, Coromandel International and Tata Chemicals to supply 6,70,000 tonnes of potash during the period October 1, 2011 to March 31, 2012," PotashCorp said in a statement.

Pricing under these contracts is $470 per tonne including cost and freight (CFR) for 50% of the contract volumes (for shipment during fourth quarter of 2011) and $530 per tonne CFR for (rest) 50% of the volumes (for shipment during first quarter of 2012), it added.

“India is one of the largest potash markets in the world, and these new contracts are indicative of our ongoing commitment to this important and growing market," Canpotex president and chief executive officer Steve Dechka said.

As a result of this settlement, Canpotex is now fully committed to sales in the fourth quarter of 2011, Dechka added.

Earlier, talks over potash imports by Indian companies were stalled due to pricing issue. While global suppliers were quoting a rate of around $500 per tonne, Indian companies had demanded that the price should not be over $420 per tonne.