BEIJING, Sept 12 (Reuters) - China on Wednesday slashed its forecast for 2018/19 soybean imports, due to the Sino-U.S. trade conflict, expectations of low soy content in animal feed and a fall in pig farm profits, increasing the government’s supply deficit estimate.
Imports of soybeans in the crop year that starts on Oct. 1 will be 83.65 million tonnes, down 10.2 million tonnes from last month’s estimate of 93.85 million tonnes, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs said in its monthly crop report.
Imports of the oilseed were also pushed down as Beijing promotes lower-protein animal feed and forecasts larger domestic output, the ministry said.
The changes pushed the 2018/19 soybean deficit forecast to 3.57 million tonnes from 250,000 tonnes in August, according to the report.
The ministry also raised its 2018/19 domestic soybean output forecast to 15.83 million tonnes from 15.37 million tonnes in August. (Reporting by Hallie Gu and Josephine Mason; Editing by Christian Schmollinger)