BEIJING, Oct 13 (Reuters) – China’s soybean imports grew in September as delayed shipments began arriving at customs and are expected to remain robust in the coming months due to increased arrivals from the United States as part of the trade agreement between Washington and Beijing.
The market expects demand for oilseeds to remain strong in the world’s leading soybean importer, as the country is recovering rapidly from African swine fever.
China imported 9.79 million tonnes of soybeans in September, up 1.9% from the 9.6 million tonnes recorded in August, according to data from the General Administration of Customs released on Tuesday. Purchases also increased 19% from 8.2 million tonnes in September last year, according to the data.
“Some delayed shipments cleared customs in September,” said Xie Huilan, an analyst at agricultural consultancy Cofeed. “Shipments are still mainly from Brazil.”
The mills had previously increased imports of Brazilian grains due to their good crushing margins, and abundant arrivals of the oilseed in recent months have pushed inventories from China to record levels.
Brazil’s exports had recovered after March, as the weather improved in the South American giant. However, shipments from the country were reduced as the harvest neared its end.
China also booked large volumes of US soybeans, but mainly for delivery in the new business year (September through August), in part to fulfill its commitments under the Phase 1 agreement it signed with Washington in January this year.
US shipments are expected to increase next month and continue to grow in the coming months, analysts said.
Soybean imports increased 15.5% year-on-year in the first nine months of 2020 to 74.53 million tonnes.
(Reporting by Hallie Gu and Shivani Singh; Edited in Spanish by Ricardo Figueroa)