Leaving droughts behind, rebound for Thai sugar production
After two years of severe drought, Thailand’s sugar production could rebound by more than 14 percent in 2017/18 to a three-year high. The newest official forecast stands at 108.5 MMT of cane, which could yield an estimated 11.5 MMT of sugar. This is up from the previous official forecast of 11.2 MMT and in line with our own recent forecast of 11.6 MMT. Exports in 2017/18 could rise by almost 2.0 MMT from 2016/17 exports of around 6.9 MMT.
Growth in planted acreage is likely to continue, suggesting that output will rise further in 2018/19. Crush has already passed 53.13 MMT of cane, pushing sugar output past the 5.0 MMT mark at the end of January.
Thailand has made several moves to liberalize its sugar market, eliminating direct subsidies for cane growers, in part as a response to a WTO challenge from Brazil. The country has now lifted domestic price controls and supports and other regulations covering the marketing of sugar.
The country approved a tax on sweetened beverages in September 2017—set to go into effect in September 2019, after a two-year grace period.
Thailand sugar supply & demand history
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