MOSCOW Dec 20 Russian potash producer Uralkali
forecast a rebound in demand for the soil nutrient
next year, saying farmers will have an incentive to invest after
benefiting from higher crop prices in 2012, when drought slashed
It expected global potash deliveries this year to total 48
million to 49 million tonnes, down around 13 percent from last
year's record levels due to significant stocks, economic
volatility and unfavourable weather conditions in many regions
of the world.
"We hope that the positive crop dynamics that we are
observing now will provide for a significant rebound in potash
demand next year," Uralkali Chief Executive Vladislav
Uralkali, controlled by businessman Suleiman Kerimov, is the
world's largest potash miner by output and the second-biggest
producer by capacity behind Canada's Potash Corp of Saskatchewan
Its revenue in the third-quarter of this year fell 12
percent to $1.06 billion, the company said. For the nine months,
revenue was 4 percent higher at $3.29 billion.
Uralkali has previously forecast that global demand would
rise to 54 million tonnes in 2013.
Drought this year hurt crops in the United States, Russia
and the Black Sea region and other parts of the world, sending
grain inventories lower and prices up.
Uralkali said early in December it would cut potash output
by half to 2 million tonnes in the December to March period to
reduce excess global supply during a protracted fall in demand.
China and India halted contract purchases of the crop
nutrient in the second half of the year and are expected to
contract lower volumes next year, making for a slow start to
Uralkali said the poor monsoon in India created increasing
cautiousness among farmers about purchasing fertilisers, but
that demand there should return to a previous peak level of 6.5
million tonnes after 2014.
In China, local demand is low due partly due to signs of an
economic slowdown in the country. Uralkali expects to begin
re-negotiating a new contract with China in February.