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Falling rubber prices force market shift



KRABI: The Rubber Authority of Thailand (RAOT) announced on Wednesday that the Kingdom will target Indian and Middle-Eastern markets in an effort to bolster Thailand’s share of the rubber commodities market.

Titus Suksaard, the governor of RAOT, laid out plans at the Global Rubber Conference in Krabi, which was attended by rubber producers, traders and experts from Thailand and 25 other countries.

“Besides exchanging ideas, this conference gives us the chance to build new business relations between Thailand and those 25 other countries,” Mr Titus said. “We also discussed and analyzed the present and future of the rubber industry, marketing strategies, new technologies, product development, pricing, and how to modernize the rubber economy.”

Thailand is currently the world’s leading rubber exporter, comprising some 36 per cent of the world’s rubber production. Rubber prices have declined almost 50 percent over the past five years, according to the Thai Rubber Association.

“The rubber price is not really high these days because of world economic issues,” Mr Titus said. “Thailand exports about 90 per cent of its rubber, using only about 10 per cent within the country. That is why the price is dropping, as world demand has also dropped due to economic circumstances.”

Mr Titus said it is the government’s current plan to boost Thailand’s internal rubber consumption in order to drive prices back up.

“Besides this plan, we will also start to focus on increasing our exports to India and Middle Eastern markets, as they are ideal markets to extend into and boost exports.”

— Kritsada Mueanhawong


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