China, Brazil boost potash imports in Q1

China and Brazil led the list of potash buyers during the first quarter of 2013, according to Scotiabank’s (TSX:BNS) monthly commodity index published Monday.

China’s potash imports jumped by almost 19% between January and April, while Brazilian imports surged 53% year over year, as buyers took advantage of lower potash prices and high grain prices.

The sector seems to be the only one still showing signs of optimism, as the recent pick-up in sales volumes signals healthy global demand for the commodity.

After four consecutive quarters of falling profit, one of the main producers, Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan (NYSE: POT) said last April it was seeing higher sales to China, Latin America and India as customers are lured back by low prices after a buyers’ strike last year.

But experts warn the industry profit bonanza of several years ago won’t return until the global economy gains pace, producers can secure higher prices and concerns of overcapacity continue to fade away, mainly as BHP Billiton’s expansion plans for the Jansen potash mine remain uncertain.

Image by  rolfik/Shutterstock.com

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