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Grain harvests may not keep pace with consumption
Grain harvests may not keep pace with consumption

CHINA, the world's largest consumer of wheat, rice and corn, may have a widening shortfall in grain and oilseed supplies in the next 15 years because harvests may not keep pace with consumption, Bloomberg reports.

The nation's self-sufficiency in wheat may fall from 93.9% in 2000 to 85.1% by 2020, according to Cheng Guoqiang, an analyst at the Development Research Centre of the State Council, speaking at a conference in Beijing .

Production of grains used in livestock feed might lag behind de- mand as consumption of meat rose, Mr Cheng said.

The country's self-sufficiency in corn could fall to 74% from 97.4%, while it might be reduced to 20.6% from 46.1% for soybeans.

Mr Cheng expects grain harvests and consumption to be "tightly balanced"'this year and next, and imports will be needed to meet domestic shortfalls, Zhou Guanhua, deputy director- general of macro-man- agement at the State Grain Administration in Beijing, told the conference.

In contrast, self-sufficiency in rice, the biggest crop in China, could rise to 104.5% by 2020 from 103.8% in 2000 as the government encouraged plantings to ensure there was enough of the staple in reserves, Mr Cheng said.

Rice is the only crop which has a minimum purchase price.

"The amount available for international supplies will be limited," Mr Cheng continued.

His forecasts are based on an average annual 7% increase in gross domestic product over the next 15 years.

China's total grain harvest rose 9% to 470m tons last year, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.
MGR Archive 30.10.2005
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Russia Rapan $ 700
USA Jupiter Rice $630
USA Calrose #1 $830
USA Calrose #1 Paddy $480
EU Prices Baldo €660
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