Why Are Latex Prices Rising? Conflict in the Red Sea and Production Restrictions
Currently, we are seeing an increase in latex prices. This trend is due to production problems in the main producing countries and export restrictions imposed by Côte d'Ivoire. These supply challenges outweigh the effects of slightly weaker demand, thus keeping prices rising. Additionally, the conflict in the Red Sea is escalating, with clashes between the United States and the Houthi rebels. The lack of a short-term solution to this conflict is generating an increase in the costs of shipping goods.

Diseño sin título (8)Ivory Coast Limits Rubber Exports
Earlier this month, Ivory Coast implemented a partial ban on exporting primary forms of natural rubber, such as cup lump. Although this measure seeks to boost internal processing, it could lead to an increase in prices by forcing buyers to look for alternative supplies.

Supply Tensions: Rains, Reduced Production and Diseases Affect Rubber
Several supply difficulties are raising concerns about a possible rubber shortage: rains in Thailand paralyzing production, lower-than-expected production in India, and the impact of leaf disease in Sri Lanka.

China Demand and GDP Growth
Despite upward pressures on supply, China's demand is not showing a firm recovery. The country closed 2023 with GDP growth of 5.2%, barely reaching its goal, but with a slowdown in the last quarter and a declining real estate market, marked by a 23% drop in December sales.

Crisis in the Red Sea: Changes in Market Projections for 2024
The situation in the Red Sea remains tense with continued Houthi attacks on merchant ships, despite US intervention. This conflict is altering market expectations for 2024, going from a scenario of excess capacity to a much tighter one. Additionally, replenishment of empty containers is expected to be slower, similar to what has occurred during the pandemic, resulting in around 780,000 fewer TEUs of empty containers available in Asia for the Chinese New Year.

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