JERUSALEM, Aug 9 (Reuters) - Israel Chemicals (ICL) (ICL.TA) said on Sunday potash sales slid 75 percent in the second quarter, sending its shares down more than 3 percent.
ICL, a maker of fertilisers and specialty chemicals and the second largest company traded on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, said second-quarter potash sales amounted to 347,000 tonnes, down from 1.41 million tonnes in the April-June period in 2008.
In a filing to the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, ICL — the world’s sixth largest potash maker — declined to give a dollar amount for the sales.
The company, which will report quarterly results later this month, also said phosphate sales rose to 250,000 tonnes from 83,000 a year earlier.
“The reduction in potash production in the first and second quarters of 2009 stems primarily from a deliberate decrease in Europe of production volumes and their adaptation to the volume of potash demand and storage capacity in Europe,” it said.
ICL shares closed 3.1 percent lower at 45.20 shekels, compared with a fall of 1 percent on the broader Tel Aviv bourse.
Last month, ICL signed a deal to supply 750,000 tonnes to an unnamed Indian customer at $460 a tonne. Israeli media identified the customer as Indian Potash Ltd (IPL). The nine month deal is worth $345 million. [nN20118695] ($1=3.91 shekels) (Reporting by Steven Scheer; Editing by Mike Nesbit)