Government sees higher sugar output in 2013-A A +A
Friday, January 4, 2013
DESPITE the storms that wrought havoc on the agriculture sector late last year, the Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA) is still projecting higher sugar production for this year, an official said Friday.
SRA Administrator Ma. Regina Bautista-Martin said her office maintains its Crop Year (CY) 2012/13 sugar production forecast at 2.356 million metric tons (MT).
"As of December 16, 2012, sugar production for the current CY has already reached 872,978.87 MT, or 37.048 percent of the forecast production. This is 27.19 percent higher than last year for the same period," Martin said.
The increase in production was attributed to early milling, higher rate of crushing, and favorable weather condition in the last quarter of 2012.
On the other hand, based on SRA records, sugar withdrawals for domestic demand has been higher compared to last year's level, at 28.61 percent for raw sugar and 22.80 percent for refined sugar.
SRA is expecting a strong sugar demand for 2013 due to stable sugar prices and the midterm elections in May 2013, Martin said.
The official also expressed confidence that the Philippine sugar will continue to be a dollar earner as it continues to be exported to the United States and other markets.
Shipments under the US Quota program will start this January 2013, while exports to the world had already reached more than 20,000 MT.
World sugar supply is expected to have a surplus due to favorable crushing and weather conditions in some of the major sugar producing countries such as Brazil, India and Thailand.
This will have pressure on sugar prices, but the SRA is hopeful that domestic prices will continue to be stable, as shown in price movements over the past months.
"The need to increase productivity and reduce cost of production is even more imperative now. With import tariffs at 18 percent starting January 1, 2013, we need to be vigilant in assessing the impact of world market situation on local prices," Martin said. (SDR/Sunnex)