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Guar gum Exports Halved to Around 1.29 Lk Tonnes Y/Y During April-October 2020; 13,567 T Exported in October

23 Nov 2020 3:16 pm
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Mumbai Commodities Control - October 2020 witnessed exports of 13,567 tonnes of guar gum powder, while the exports of all the other guar products were registered at 19,507 tons. Meanwhile in September the latter reported exports of 19,116 tonnes. During April-October in the 2020, i.e. the current Financial year was reported at 129,480 tons as compared with 249,699 tons registered for the corresponding period last year; roughly half of the last year’s export figures.


Exporters attribute the weak data to dull overseas demand for guar gum.


Recent Customs Data reveal that nearly Rs 134 crores worth of guar gum powder was reported in October, at an average export rate of Rs 99, 500 per Tonne, while the average domestic rate in October was in the range of Rs 75,000-85,000 per Tonne.


India is currently exporting Food-grade guar gum to overseas markets, along with technical grade guar gum. The latter is used in cosmetic, pharma and for other industrial purposes. Having said so, export demand for technical grade guar used in the crude oil sector has been least, thus far, accounting for just 10-15% of the total share.


Weak demand from the crude oil sector is the biggest reason behind drop in export demand of guar, this year, as compared with past few years.


As for guar gum Split, 1,000 tonnes of the product was exported in October, valued at Rs 7.38 crores. The average export rate was quoted at around Rs 73,800 per Tonne in October, while Guar gum Split was priced in domestic markets at around Rs 62,000 per Tonne.


4,940 tonnes of guar meal korma--a by-product of guar seed was exported in October, valued at Rs 22.6 crores. The average export rate was quoted at Rs 45,748 per Tonne, while the domestic market in October was priced at Rs 40,000-41,000 per Tonne.


According to APEDA, exports of all the guar products stood at 19,116 tons in October, up 2.5% from September. Growth pace in exports has dimmed. Meanwhile for the current Financial year, April-October 2020, the exports stood at 129,480 tonnes vs 249,699 tonnes exported for the corresponding period last year. During FY 2019-20, the cumulative exports stood at 381,880 tonnes.


Guar gum and its derivatives find great importance in a wide range of applications. In the petroleum industry, they were used as components in several formulations for corrosion inhibition, fracturing fluids, enhanced oil recovery and viscosity improvers.


Prior to virus-led pandemic, guar gum was used for the process of Shale output. This is the reason why the exports touched 381,880 tonnes despite reduced demand. The pandemic brought the global economy to screeching halt that led to drop in crude oil demand. This explains the reduced share of 10-15% of guar gum for fracking purposes.


According to Jodhpur-based guar exporter Prakash Chopra, "the exports declined with the slowdown in oil output. Although, demand for food-grade and technical grade guar for other industrial purposes remains intact. With the reopening of oil rigs, the demand of guar gum for oil sector is expected to bounce back."

Prakash added that 'the Government should widen the research on guar gum to extend its usage across industrial sectors. This would reduce the commodity’s dependance on oil sector for its demand.It is widely expected that keeping climate safety in mind, Joe Biden--the newly elected President of the United States of America may favour the usage of natural products like guar gum for oil fracking over chemical products. If realised, the demand for guar gum will rebound.'



       
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