China's pesticide export analysis Latin American market up in 2016, with some highlights

Posted on 2017-08-08
According to a Chinese Customs data report, China’s pesticide exports to Latin America in 2016 amounted to 528,934 tons, up 37% annually, with an export value of US$2.08 billion, a 13.6% increase compared to 2015. 
However, a gap still exists with the peak value in 2014 of $2.4 billion. China exports pesticides to 29 countries out of the 34 countries and regions of Latin America. The top 11 countries by export value are ranked as follows: Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Paraguay, Uruguay, Mexico, Chile, Peru, Venezuela, Ecuador and Guatemala. China’s pesticide export value to these 11 countries accounts for over 93% of the total export value to Latin America, while its volume of exports accounts for around 90% of the total (Table 1).


Except for Uruguay, Chile, Peru and Guatemala, the export value to all other countries increased by at least 10% annually. (Fig. 1)


Fig.1 2015-2016 China pesticide export value change
Although Venezuela in suffering from an economic depression, their import volume rose to 12.63 thousand tons, a 547% increase, which was mainly due to government procurement (Fig.2).


Fig. 2 2015-2016 China pesticide export volume change
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New round of inventory compensation
Analysis by Product 
In 2016, China’s pesticide exports to Latin America were still highly centralized, where the top 20 pesticide varieties accounted for 64% of the total exports to the region. The export value reached $1.35 billion, as shown in Table 2. 
Compared with 2015, China’s exports to Latin America in 2016 did not show a significant difference in product structure or variety. Herbicides still led exports by a wide margin. There were 11 herbicide products among the top 20 export products, accounting for 73% of the export value. This was followed by six insecticide products, accounting for 18%, and three fungicide products that accounted for 9% of the export value. 
Due to the impact of falling market demand and currency devaluation, Latin American countries reduced their procurement of staple pesticides but continued to sell their inventory, which directly led to an average 20% reduction in the volume of conventional pesticides, represented by glyphosate and paraquat, the prices of which dropped sharply by 40% to 50%. 
Most of the top 20 products saw a fall in prices while the export of clethodim and haloxyfop-P-methyl increased, both in price and volume. The export value of clethodim was increased by 265%. 
Export volume and value of formulation soared compared to 2015, an increase of 59% and 38% respectively. Technicals’ export volume rose by 20%, but the value did not increase (Table 3). Since August and September of 2016, along with the increase of environmental pressure in China, a higher number of factories were forced to stop production, leading to the rising cost of Chinese pesticides that continued in 2017, with prices rising even faster. 
Maintaining sustainable growth through market cultivation
Analysis by Company 
In 2016, only one Chinese supplier earned $100 million from exports to Latin America. Most glyphosate suppliers suffered from the gloomy market for glyphosate, resulting in a continuous decrease in export value. However, Rainbow achieved a 29% increase, which it attributed to its localized operations, strong supply chain and diversified product range. 
The top 10 exporters of 2016 contributed nearly 40% of the export value from China to Latin America (Table 4). Notably, Nantong Jiangshan and Ningbo Tide achieved remarkable performances. The growth of Nantong Jiangshan was supported by the rising procurement volume from their clients in Brazil and Argentina while Tide achieved the largest growth, mainly due to its government procurement project in Venezuela. 
Base on the requirements from our Latin American readers, AgroPages is publishing its 2016 China pesticide export analysis on every Latin America country, including the entire China Customs data on pesticides and the analysis sheets of specific products and Chinese exporters, to highlight a comprehensive picture on export products and locations, as well as prices and annual trends.


Author:Erwin Xue