India to import 4.7 mlnT potash, 7 mlnT DAP in FY11

MUMBAI, May 14 (Reuters) - India, one of the world’s leading importers of potash, has secured contracts for about 4.7 million tonnes of the soil nutrient at $370 per tonne for FY11, nearly 20 percent discount to its purchase price last year, and has an option to buy more, the head of a top fertilizer company said.

The country, which also imports most of its diammonium phosphate (DAP) requirement, has tied up for 7 million tonnes of the soil nutrient at $500 a tonne, U.S. Awasthi, managing director of Indian Farmers Fertiliser Co-operative Ltd, or IFFCO, told Reuters late on Thursday.

“This year the fertilizer demand is likely to rise by 3-3.5 percent. Monsoon is a one of the determining factor, but it is not the sole factor. Other things also impact on demand,” he said.

A good monsoon allows the farmers to spend more on fertilizers, as other input costs such procuring underground water, comes down, he added. (Reporting by Ashutosh Joshi & Rajendra Jadhav; Editing by Harish nambiar)