Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Chinese grain imports hit record high
Money Control.com ^ | Wed, Apr 11, 2012 at 10:08

Posted on 04/14/2012 2:12:15 PM PDT by DeaconBenjamin

China's grain imports hit a record high in March, as the world's most populous country increasingly turns to overseas markets to meet its agricultural needs.

Customs data from Beijing revealed that grain imports reached 1.64m tonnes in March, up sixfold from a year earlier and up 50% from the previous month.

China has to feed a fifth of the world's population with only 8% of the world's arable land, and does not grow genetically modified grains. As rising incomes and more meat-heavy diets boost grain demand, China's reliance on imports has slowly increased.

Big corn purchases likely contributed to the jump in March grain imports, said traders. The grain category includes corn, wheat, rice and barley. Specific data for each will be released toward the end of this month.

China accounts for about 20% of the world's corn consumption and only 4% of global corn trade, but its sudden increase in corn buying has greatly tightened the global market. China's corn imports in January and February this year totaled 1.26m tonnes, four hundred times more than the same period last year.

China's domestic corn prices are among the highest in the world, and during January and February commercial firms were taking advantage of the arbitrage between Chinese and US corn prices to import corn at a profit. However the arbitrage window has now closed, and traders say that could damp corn imports in coming months.

The surge in grain imports was part of robust overseas purchase of commodities in March, with imports of crude oil hitting their third-highest levels ever at 5.56m barrels per day, up 8.6% from the previous year.

"These very comforting numbers, China is not slowing too rapidly," said Ian Roper, analyst at CLSA in Shanghai, referring to overall commodities imports in March.

Imports of iron ore, a key steelmaking ingredient were up 5.7% from the previous year at 62.8m tonnes.

Meanwhile copper, a bellwether of industrial activity, stayed near record highs with imports of 462,182 tonnes in March, up 50.5% from the previous year.

However it was grain that recorded the single biggest year-on-year jump in percentage terms of any commodity with a 500% increase, according to the customs data released Tuesday.

Analyst Ma Wenfeng at Beijing Orient Agribusiness said he expects China's grain imports to grow. He forecasts corn imports will hit 7m tonnes this calendar year, and wheat between 1.5m to 2m tonnes.

"The key thing is the price," said Mr Ma. "Right now China's corn prices are incredibly high. . . if [state owned commodity trading house] Cofco can make money then it will import."

Others pointed out that mold and mildew had damaged some stored corn last year, contributing to tight domestic corn market. "Production [of corn] has increased significantly in China, but safe and secure storage have not grown in conjunction," said Rabobank analyst Daron Hoffman.

Wheat imports have also soared, thanks in part to demand for high-protein wheats used in specialty breads. China's wheat imports in January and February were 580,000 tonnes, more than three times higher than the same period last year.

The March grain imports are the highest since Chinese customs started reporting aggregate grain imports in 2006.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Foreign Affairs; Government
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 04/14/2012 2:12:18 PM PDT by DeaconBenjamin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: DeaconBenjamin

Can somebody forward this news to the Ethanol lobbyists?

Stop shoving ethanol impaired gasoline down our throats!

Sell corn to the Chinese and stop ruining our trucks, chain saws, lawnmowers, and string trimmers.


2 posted on 04/14/2012 2:18:52 PM PDT by Tailback
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DeaconBenjamin

China used to be self sufficient in food production. I wonder if this is a long term trend forming.


3 posted on 04/14/2012 2:21:59 PM PDT by Vince Ferrer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tailback
Stop shoving ethanol impaired gasoline down our throats!

We could take natural gas and make ammonia out of it, and combine the ammonia with gasoline in the same way ethanol is. Then sell the excess corn to China.

4 posted on 04/14/2012 2:24:28 PM PDT by Vince Ferrer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Tailback

Sell corn to the Chinese and stop ruining our trucks, chain saws, lawnmowers, and string trimmers
No to the first and OK to the second.
5 posted on 04/14/2012 2:24:42 PM PDT by Olog-hai
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: DeaconBenjamin

Meanwhile we (the US) grow corn to make to make fuel! The US and the Canadians could be the OPEC of the grain world and between the two of us we sit on most of the fossil fuels in the world, However greed, corruption,socialists, ecofreaks and their Fing lawyers are making sure none of that ever happens!


6 posted on 04/14/2012 2:25:53 PM PDT by mongo141 (Revolution ver 2.0, just a matter of when, not a matter of if!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tailback

Are you people complete idiots? Even if ethanol sucks as a fuel, why the HELL would I want to dump unprocessed corn on a barge and ship it overseas - to our enemies?

Find something to give it value-added - here. Jobs and products here, not for the Chicoms.


7 posted on 04/14/2012 2:34:05 PM PDT by Free Vulcan (Election 2012 - America stands or falls. No more excuses. Get involved.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: DeaconBenjamin
Stockpiling or have they turned into prepes?
8 posted on 04/14/2012 2:34:24 PM PDT by fella ("As it was before Noah, so shall it be again.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tailback

You beat me to it. The global warming scam kills.


9 posted on 04/14/2012 2:39:24 PM PDT by pallis
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: DeaconBenjamin

They are going to take over the world but they cannot feed themselves?


10 posted on 04/14/2012 2:40:06 PM PDT by yldstrk ( My heroes have always been cowboys)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Vince Ferrer
China has to feed a fifth of the world's population with only 8% of the world's arable land, and does not grow genetically modified grains. As rising incomes and more meat-heavy diets boost grain demand, China's reliance on imports has slowly increased.

That's where things get spicy in Asia. Nuclear India to the south of China has the world's largest proportion of fertile, arable land, with three (and in many places, four) harvest seasons to boot and the copious monsoon rains to allow barely-mechanised agriculture to produce record harvests, annually. Imagine China attempting a take-over with the intention of using that land in a mechanised manner to feed China. Nukes will be lobbed, and America will be sucked in to side with one or the other to prevent a global domination by either, inevitably.

11 posted on 04/14/2012 2:41:21 PM PDT by James C. Bennett (An Australian.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: Free Vulcan
Are you people complete idiots? Even if ethanol sucks as a fuel, why the HELL would I want to dump unprocessed corn on a barge and ship it overseas - to our enemies?

Maybe because feed corn is a fungible commodity on the worldwide market? Sell field corn to our allies then, what they don't buy will be sent to the Chinese. Who's the idiot BTW?
12 posted on 04/14/2012 2:45:01 PM PDT by Tailback
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: James C. Bennett

I was in the largest wheat growing region in China during harvest season a few years ago. Their level of mechanization is probably not much more than India. They were harvesting and threshing grain with machines that would be considered more applicable to mowing a large midwestern lawn than a production farm here. Very very labor intensive, even as there is an ongoing great migration there into cities.


13 posted on 04/14/2012 2:47:38 PM PDT by Vince Ferrer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Vince Ferrer
China used to be self sufficient in food production.

I wonder if it isn't just a sign that they're eating more and better now. Perhaps, it's also a result of industrialization and shrinking farm populations. Interesting, though.

14 posted on 04/14/2012 2:53:04 PM PDT by BfloGuy (The final outcome of the credit expansion is general impoverishment.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: DeaconBenjamin
imports of crude oil hitting their third-highest levels ever at 5.56m barrels per day, up 8.6% from the previous year.

Crude goes up 8.6%, ok.

But...

copper, up 50.5% from the previous year.

grain that recorded the single biggest year-on-year jump in percentage terms of any commodity with a 500% increase

China's wheat imports in January and February were 580,000 tonnes, more than three times higher (300%) than the same period last year.

Ok, the crude sounds about right at 8.6% and manufacturing MIGHT soak up a 50% increase of copper BUT the population did not increase by 300 - 500%.

They are "prepping."

.

15 posted on 04/14/2012 3:01:51 PM PDT by TLI ( ITINERIS IMPENDEO VALHALLA)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tailback

Why would you want to sell unprocessed corn when you could do something with it here and provide jobs and other products and bring more value to the farmer and the economy? That’s just stupidity. Do you live in the 50’s?


16 posted on 04/14/2012 3:04:28 PM PDT by Free Vulcan (Election 2012 - America stands or falls. No more excuses. Get involved.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Vince Ferrer

There is a long piece in the current Forbes describing the Celenese plant in Houston that will make ethanol from coal and natural gas. They will make it so cheap the corn ethanol plants will be unable to compete on cost and they have strong arguments about less CO2 emissions in their process vs corn grown ethanol.

They make acedic acid...... vinegar and turn itbacl into wine, pure ethanol. Their ethanol has a higher alcohol content than the distilled product.

They are building another such plant in China with 60 million gallon capacity


17 posted on 04/14/2012 3:13:18 PM PDT by bert (K.E. N.P. +12 ..... Crucifixion is coming)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Vince Ferrer

There is a long piece in the current Forbes describing the Celenese plant in Houston that will make ethanol from coal and natural gas. They will make it so cheap the corn ethanol plants will be unable to compete on cost and they have strong arguments about less CO2 emissions in their process vs corn grown ethanol.

They make acedic acid...... vinegar and turn itbacl into wine, pure ethanol. Their ethanol has a higher alcohol content than the distilled product.

They are building another such plant in China with 60 million gallon capacity


18 posted on 04/14/2012 3:13:36 PM PDT by bert (K.E. N.P. +12 ..... Crucifixion is coming)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: DeaconBenjamin

A closely guarded secret that very few are aware of is that Ronald Reagan defeated the Soviet Union, and ended the Cold War, with a resounding US victory, with *wheat*!

Even at the height of the Dust Bowl, in which thousands of farms were wiped out from Texas to Canada, through the heartland of America, one of America’s biggest problem was that the remaining farmers were producing too much food for us to consume.

Ronald Reagan did something unexpected right at the beginning of his term, which made ideologues of both the left and the right outraged. He opened the door to “unlimited sales of wheat to the Soviet Union.”

Few people even remember he did that. The left accused him of “trying to buy the farm vote”, and the right cursed him for “propping up the Soviet Union, by selling them grain they could not produce themselves.”

Expensive wheat. Very expensive wheat.

For its part, the Soviet Union had never produced enough grain to feed itself. This was because its communist leaders insisted that communist farms *had* to be more productive that wage farms or capitalist farms. But they weren’t. In fact, though they had most Soviet arable farmland, they produced just a tiny amount of food. So little that the leaders were forced to permit some number of wage farms, which were more productive, and eventually a black market of capitalist farms—very highly taxed, to try to “keep them down”—that were *very* productive.

But to the bitter end, the communists were in denial of what was right in front of them. Zero pattern recognition.

In any event, because the communists were so paranoid, they would not eat US grain, but they would use it to feed their farm animals, then divert the Soviet grown animal fodder for human food.

But shipload after shipload of grain flowed to them. And in exchange the US got most of the crude oil that the Soviet Union could produce.

But it was not enough to pay for our grain.

So they sold us all their gold and silver reserves, and began to dredge their river deltas for more gold, to pay for US wheat.

But it was not enough to pay for our grain.

So they gave us all the foreign currency they had gotten in trade for things for years.

But it was not enough to pay for our grain.

The end result was like the Soviet Union was a junkie, selling whatever it could to pay for our grain. Financially they were a ruin, living from day to day. Scraping the bottom of the financial barrel.

And then Reagan announced the Strategic Defense Initiative, “Star Wars”. At least 500 billion dollars the US could casually throw at it, which would negate the Soviet Union’s nuclear missiles.

And it broke their spirit. There was no way they could possibly overcome or match the US effort. The balance of power had changed, and they had lost. And there was nothing to do but give up. The communist dream, a nightmare to billions, was over.

Destroyed with wheat.

Because Ronald Reagan understood the power of American agribusiness, and the weakness of communists.


19 posted on 04/14/2012 3:19:38 PM PDT by yefragetuwrabrumuy ("It is already like a government job," he said, "but with goats." -- Iranian goat smuggler)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: yefragetuwrabrumuy

Nice! I did not know this bit of history.

Thanks for posting this.

That Reagan was shrewd, wasn’t he? ;)


20 posted on 04/14/2012 3:27:31 PM PDT by thecodont
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: Free Vulcan

Good grief.

What would we do with unprocessed surplus feed corn here in the USA?

Oh I know, lets subsidize it, require by law to include it in ethanol impaired gasoline blends, thereby destroying small engines nationwide. Or maybe the feds should just use tax money to pay midwest farmers to not grow feed corn?

How about we find a market begging to buy feed corn, and sell it? What part of the federal government is broke do you not understand. Who’s living in the 50’s? You apparently want to continue the new deal great depression style farm subsidy racket. I’d like to see free market approaches to current problems.


21 posted on 04/14/2012 3:41:59 PM PDT by Tailback
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Tailback

Are you retarded? You are obviously ignorant, from the simple fact you call it ‘feed corn’. That’s the mentality that got us where we are. Corn has protein, oil, neutraceuticals, pharmaceuticals, and the sugars can be fermented into anything you wish, including exotic and high-value chemical. The tech is there and coming on line but everybody is still back channeling Eisenhower and Sputnik and doesn’t want to think about the possibilities and take the risk.


22 posted on 04/14/2012 4:09:52 PM PDT by Free Vulcan (Election 2012 - America stands or falls. No more excuses. Get involved.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: thecodont

Remember that he led the Screen Actors Guild through the HUAC hearings, and he was able to finger a lot of communists in Hollywood (and they were, but only one ever admitted to it, though the evidence against the others was damning.)

As such, he had a deep understanding of the psychology of fanatical communists. (Oddly enough, an investigative technique used to determine if someone was a genuine communist was to tell them a joke. Fanatics try to fit everything they experience into their tight little reality, so there is no place for humor. Thus they cannot genuinely laugh in a spontaneous manner.)

I really have no clue who gave him his great insights about American agriculture, which he probably got in his youth in Illinois, or during his time in Iowa. America learned a lot about agriculture as a nation during the Dust Bowl and Great Depression. The Federal Surplus Relief Corporation left a lasting impression on many farmers, and not a good one.


23 posted on 04/14/2012 4:37:01 PM PDT by yefragetuwrabrumuy ("It is already like a government job," he said, "but with goats." -- Iranian goat smuggler)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: DeaconBenjamin

Chi-coms, Saudi Arabia, Iran etc all need fuud stuffs to feed their populations and STILL we refuse to use our food as a weapon???
WTF???
Meanwhile we continue to let the Saudi’s bend us over for OIL?
Starve the bastards.


24 posted on 04/14/2012 5:01:04 PM PDT by Joe Boucher ((FUBO) Hey Mitt, F-you too pal)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Free Vulcan

Look, give me a report on “Fungible Commodities” and how you trade them in a world market.

Otherwise, stop personally attacking me before I report you to the moderator.

Either Corn, whether it’s feed corn or sweet corn, is a tradable commodity worldwide, or it’s a overgrown federally subsidized welfare crop. A corn farmer may as well sell his farm and go on foodstamps because the difference is semantics.

If there is a market for your corn derivatives, sell them. If there is no market without federal subsidies, go on food stamps. There is no difference.

In fact, I propose every dime of corn subsidy go to Solyndra to subsidize solar panels that nobody wants to buy. (OK, not really) There is no difference pissing away money on worthless money losing companies like Solyndra, than pissing away money subsidizing stupid nonviable corn BS.

I’m sick of the “I’m a conservative except for when it’s my federal subsidy being threatened” types. There is no more money!


25 posted on 04/14/2012 7:30:21 PM PDT by Tailback
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: DeaconBenjamin
From the article:

China accounts for about 20% of the world's corn consumption and only 4% of global corn trade...

This sounds like sonething that 0bama would say about the USA and oil production/consumption.

26 posted on 04/15/2012 7:39:23 AM PDT by NRG1973
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: yldstrk; Free Vulcan; mongo141; Olog-hai; Tailback
They are going to take over the world but they cannot feed themselves?

Historically speaking, many empires like Rome, Britain and the Soviet Union couldn't sustain their population's staple needs and imported other countries harvests to fill the deficient.

Doesn't make them backwards and may explain their internal need of expansionist tendencies.

Think of the Nazis and Adolf Hitler's ideology of "Lebensraum" (German for " living space").
27 posted on 04/16/2012 10:05:03 AM PDT by RedMonqey (A politician's integrity is usually only as strong as his poll numbers.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: Free Vulcan; mongo141; Olog-hai; Tailback


I'd rather sell the Chinese our grain thus helping our farmers produce food. Not using tax dollars to artificially prop up grain market prices using methanol, the faux "green" energy substitute for gasoline.

We sold grain to the Soviet Union for years yet it didn't prevent it from falling apart. Back during his term, Jimmy Carter's boycott for the Soviet Union invading Afghanistan didn't hurt the commies but it was devastating to the American farmers. Squeezed by gasoline prices, inflation and no market for the product, many family farms went under thanks to "Jimmah's" feel good policy.
28 posted on 04/16/2012 10:07:55 AM PDT by RedMonqey (A politician's integrity is usually only as strong as his poll numbers.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: TLI; Vince Ferrer; Olog-hai; Tailback; BfloGuy
They are "prepping."

What they are "prepping" is their American size dinner to satisfy their growing appetite for the Western lifestyle.

They are eating more beef, pork and chicken than previous generations ever dreamed of.

They are "winning" the economic war and I seriously doubt they are going to change their game plan as long as it is successful.

To use an old phrase: "He who has the most toys win"

And they are in the market for more expensive "play pretties" which I don't think they want scratched.
29 posted on 04/16/2012 10:20:53 AM PDT by RedMonqey (A politician's integrity is usually only as strong as his poll numbers.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: thecodont
That Reagan was shrewd, wasn’t he? ;)

LOL, maybe that Phil Hartman portrayal of Reagan on SNL was more true-to-life than people thought

Mastermind

30 posted on 04/16/2012 10:30:32 AM PDT by dfwgator (Don't wake up in a roadside ditch. Get rid of Romney.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson