Al Khaleej has Sugar Stocks to Keep Full Capacity: CEO

DUBAI - Dubai-based Al Khaleej Sugar Co, has enough stocks to keep operating at full capacity in the first quarter despite poor harvests in top producers Brazil and India, the firm’s chairman said on Thursday.

By (Reuters)

Published: Fri 22 Jan 2010, 11:33 PM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 10:26 AM

Raw sugar futures more than doubled in 2009, and have touched a series of 29-year highs this year, propelled by a huge Indian appetite for the sweetener, and by poor crop yields in top exporter Brazil after heavy rains disrupted harvesting.

Al Khaleej, the world’s largest refinery, imports almost all of its raw sugar supplies from Brazil through long-term supply contacts.

“There will be a delay in the supply we receive this year because of the shortage Brazil is facing, but we have enough sugar in stock to keep us running at full capacity till then,” Jamal Al Ghurair told Reuters in a phone interview. The company will receive a fresh shipment of supplies in May from Brazil when the new cane season starts, he added, declining to give details on volumes. “Once the new season for the cane starts I think the squeeze in supply will ease a little bit,” he said.

Still, major importers could face a supply crunch later this year as high prices have dissuaded them from ordering the volume required to meet demand, he added.

“Countries like Iran and Iraq may face shortages because right now they are not ordering enough,” he said.

Al Khaleej’s sales volumes surged 20 per cent in 2009 compared with a year earlier.

The refinery is still running at full capacity of 5,000 tonnes of white sugar per day, he said.

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