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Today's Headlines EL Nino

  • Inflation in Indonesia: Rising Pressures Due to La Nina?

    Inflation in Indonesia: Rising Pressures Due to La Nina?

    Inflation is under control in Indonesia. Based on the latest data from Statistics Indonesia (BPS), Indonesian inflation eased to 3.60 percent (y/y) in April 2016, well within the target range of the nation's central bank and central government. However, inflationary pressures in Southeast Asia's largest economy may rise in the second half of the year because there is a big chance that the El Nino weather phenomenon is to be followed by the La Nina weather phenomenon. Both weather phenomenons impact heavily on Indonesia's agricultural output.

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  • Indonesia's Coffee Output Down on El Nino and La Nina

    Indonesia's Coffee Output Down on El Nino and La Nina

    Dry weather caused by El Nino is expected to lead to a ten percent decline in Indonesia's coffee production in 2016. El Nino, which occurs once every five years on average, involves periodical warm ocean water temperatures off the western coast of South America that can cause climatic changes across the Pacific Ocean, leading to severe droughts in key agricultural-producing countries in Southeast Asia, including Indonesia. The El Nino in 2015-2016 is the worst one in nearly two decades.

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  • Palm Oil Indonesia: After Dry El Nino, Will Wet La Nina Impact CPO Output?

    Palm Oil Indonesia: After Dry El Nino, Will Wet La Nina Impact CPO Output?

    Franky Oesman Widjaja, Chairman of Sinar Mas Agribusiness & Foods, expects Indonesia's crude palm oil production in 2016 to drop by 5-10 percent (y/y) due to the impact of the El Nino weather phenomenon that brought extreme dry weather to Southeast Asia in 2015. However, in several Indonesian regions palm oil plantations are now being plagued by floods giving rise to speculation whether El Nino is to be followed by La Nina. La Nina - the opposite of El Nino - brings cooler than average sea temperatures in the central and eastern tropical Pacific Ocean causing wetter-than-usual weather in Southeast Asia.

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  • Indonesian Research Firm: 2016 Palm Oil Output Curbed by Drought & Haze

    Indonesian Research Firm: 2016 Palm Oil Output Curbed by Drought & Haze

    Riset Perkebunan Nusantara, a state-owned research firm, expects Indonesia's crude palm oil (CPO) production to drop 4.2 percent (y/y) to 32 million tons in 2016. The firm further adds that in 2015 Indonesia had a total of 11.3 million hectares of palm oil plantation, consisting of plantations owned by the state (750,000 hectares), plantations owned by the private sector (5.97 million hectares) and plantations owned by smallholders (4.58 million hectares). The palm oil sector is one of Indonesia's key foreign exchange earners. Indonesia is the world's largest producer and exporter of palm oil, followed by Malaysia.

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  • Fitch Ratings Indonesia Cuts Outlook Sinar Mas Group's Palm Oil Firms

    Fitch Ratings Indonesia Cuts Outlook Sinar Mas Group's Palm Oil Firms

    Global ratings agency Fitch Ratings cut its outlook on three Indonesian palm oil companies - Sinar Mas Agro Resources and Technology (SMART), Ivo Mas Tungkal, and Sawit Mas Sejahtera - from stable to negative. The rating of the three companies was cut to AA (idn) by Fitch Ratings Indonesia. However, an AA (idn) rating still denotes a low probability of default for the company and its bonds. The rating of bonds of SMAR, due in 2017 and 2019, were also cut to AA (idn). The three palm oil companies are owned by Golden Agri Resources, part of the Sinar Mas Group that is controlled by Eka Tjipta Widjaja, one of the richest Indonesians.

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  • Demand for Indonesian Crude Palm Oil Fell in January 2016

    Demand for Indonesian Crude Palm Oil Fell in January 2016

    Again, crude palm oil (CPO) shipments from Indonesia - the world's largest CPO producer and exporter - declined. Based on the latest data from the Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association (Gapki), palm oil exports from Indonesia fell 16 percent on a month-on-month (m/m) basis to 2.1 million tons in January 2016. This decline was mainly caused by falling palm oil demand from the key export countries China and India.

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  • Indonesia Expected to See Sugar Deficit in 2016

    Indonesia Expected to See Sugar Deficit in 2016

    Indonesia is forced to import sugar as domestic production of white crystal sugar in 2015 failed to achieve the target of 2.7 million tons. Indonesia's sugar processing plants only managed to produce 2.5 million tons of white crystal sugar in 2015. The Indonesian Sugar Association (AGI) predicts a widening sugar deficit in 2016 as it sees domestic production slowing further to 2.3 million tons in 2016, implying that about 400,000 tons of sugar need to be imported in order to meet domestic demand.

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  • Indonesian Palm Oil Companies Post Profit despite Low Prices

    Indonesian Palm Oil Companies Post Profit despite Low Prices

    While many of Indonesia's coal producers have ceased operations as the production cost margin turned negative, the country's crude palm oil (CPO) producers are still making a profit despite palm oil prices also having weakened sharply in recent years. The Palm Oil Agribusiness Strategic Policy Institute (Paspi) said that production costs for palm oil producers stand in the range of USD $250 to USD $300 per ton, implying that with current CPO prices at around USD $550 per ton, CPO producers still make a reasonable profit.

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  • Indonesian Tea Export Plagued by Drought and High Anthraquinone Level

    Indonesian Tea Export Plagued by Drought and High Anthraquinone Level

    Due to the El Nino-inflicted drought that has plagued Indonesia in 2015 (curtailing output o agricultural commodities, the country's tea exports are expected to plunge by 40 percent year-on-year (y/y) to about 48,000 tons this year. The El Nino in 2015 is one of the strongest on record. This weather phenomenon, which occurs once every five years on average, involves periodical warm ocean water temperatures off the western coast of South America that can cause climatic changes across the Pacific Ocean, leading to severe droughts in key agricultural-producing countries in Southeast Asia.

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  • Commodity Watch: What about Indonesian Crude Palm Oil in 2016?

    Commodity Watch: What about Indonesian Crude Palm Oil in 2016?

    Global crude palm oil (CPO) prices may climb up to USD $800 per metric ton in 2016, from USD $575 per ton (FOB) currently, due to the looming implementation of the B20 biodiesel program in Indonesia and curbed CPO output in 2016. Moreover, global oil prices are expected to rise to around USD $60 per barrel in 2016. Higher petroleum prices should boost demand for biodiesel (diesel blended with palm methyl ester, which is subsidized through the Indonesian government's CPO fund program).

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Latest Columns EL Nino

  • Indonesian Plantation Companies in Focus: Astra Agro Lestari

    Indonesian Plantation Companies in Focus: Astra Agro Lestari

    Expectation of rising fresh fruit bunches (FFB) and crude palm oil (CPO) volumes in the second half of the year should boost the corporate earnings of Astra Agro Lestari, one of Indonesia's leading agribusiness companies. Meanwhile, sentiments related to the La Nina weather phenomenon and rising CPO demand on the back of the Indonesian government's biodiesel program should support CPO prices. Astra Agro Lestari is the plantation unit of diversified conglomerate Astra International.

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  • Palm Oil Update: CPO Output Indonesia & Malaysia Down, Price Up

    Palm Oil Update: CPO Output Indonesia & Malaysia Down, Price Up

    Crude palm oil (CPO) production in Indonesia and Malaysia is expected to decline due to the impact of the El Nino weather phenomenon (that brought a prolonged dry season to Southeast Asia). CPO production in Malaysia could fall between 1.5 and 2 million tons this year according to Dorab Mistry, Director at Godrej International. Declining output in the world's two leading palm oil producers and exporters implies that palm oil prices should be able to rise further. At the start of this week palm oil futures traded in Kuala Lumpur (June delivery) rose to 2,779 ringgit (approx. USD $695) per ton, the highest level since March 2014.

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  • Bank Indonesia Expects Deflation in February 2016

    Bank Indonesia Expects Deflation in February 2016

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) expects to see deflation at 0.15 percent month-to-month (m/m) in February 2016. Bank Indonesia Governor Agus Martowardojo said lower (government) administered prices in combination with low core inflation will be the recipe for deflation in the second month of the year. The lower administered prices that are primarily the cause of deflation consist of fuel prices, air fares and 12-kilogram liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) canisters. In the first month of the year Indonesian inflation accelerated to 4.14 percent (y/y).

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  • Crude Palm Oil (CPO) Update Indonesia: El Nino to Impact on Production?

    Crude Palm Oil (CPO) Update Indonesia: El Nino to Impact on Production?

    Crude palm oil (CPO) output in Indonesia, the world’s largest CPO producer and exporter, may decline by 20 percent to 27.5 million tons in 2016 due to the negative impact of the El Nino weather phenomenon. On a positive note, declining CPO output in Indonesia could provide some support for benchmark Malaysian palm prices that fell to a 6.5-year low of 1,836 ringgit last week.

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  • Inflation Update Indonesia: Mounting Seasonal Pressures in June

    Inflation Update Indonesia: Mounting Seasonal Pressures in June

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) predicts mounting inflationary pressures in the months June and July due to the Ramadan and Idul Fitri festivities, the possible impact of the El Nino weather phenomenon, and the new school year. Bank Indonesia expects to see inflation at 0.66 percent month-to-month (m/m) in June 2015, particularly driven by volatile food prices (a normal phenomenon ahead of Idul Fitri). On a year-on-year (y/y) basis, Indonesian inflation is expected to accelerate to 7.40 percent, from 7.15 percent in May.

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  • Agriculture in Indonesia: Update on Rice and Coffee Production

    Agriculture in Indonesia: Update on Rice and Coffee Production

    Indonesia’s Agriculture Ministry estimates that Indonesia’s rice harvest will not be severely affected by the El Niño weather phenomenon this year. The Ministry expects to see a rice production of at least 70 million tons of unmilled rice in 2014, just 1.9 percent down from the 71.3 million tons of rice that was produced last year. Meanwhile, Indonesia may see a record coffee harvest in 2015 as recent rainfall in the important coffee-producing regions have supported the development of cherries.

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  • Agus Martowardojo: Indonesia's July 2014 Inflation Outpaces July Average

    Agus Martowardojo: Indonesian Inflation Higher than Average in July 2014

    Bank Indonesia Governor Agus Martowardojo expects the country’s July 2014 inflation pace to come in the range of 0.80 to 1.20 percent (month-to-month). This relatively high inflation figure is caused by seasonal factors: the holy fasting month of Ramadan and Idul Fitri celebrations. Ahead and during these festivities, consumers tend to spend more, thus resulting in higher prices in the context of these Islamic celebrations. A recent Bank Indonesia survey showed that inflation already reached 0.80 percent in the first week of July.

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  • Update on Indonesian April Inflation and March Trade Balance Data

    Update on Indonesian April Inflation and March Trade Balance Data

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) stated that the country's inflation outcome in April 2014 is further evidence of a continuing downward trend. In fact, Indonesia's consumer price index (CPI) in April recorded deflation of -0.02 percent month-to-month (mtm) or 7.25 percent year-on-year (yoy), thus easing compared to 0.08 percent (mtm) of inflation or 7.32 percent (yoy) in March 2014. Since January 2014, Indonesia has now recorded moderating inflation, both on a monthly and annual basis.

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  • Forecasts Suggest that New El Niño Cycle May Be Rather Strong in 2014

    Forecasts Suggest that New El Niño Cycle May Be Rather Strong in 2014

    Australia's Bureau of Meteorology is increasingly convinced that the world needs to prepare for a new El Niño cycle. According to the institution, the impact of this new cycle will be felt starting from July 2014 and may continue through the winter. Also the European Center for Medium range Weather Forecasting (ECMWF) and the US Climate Prediction Center stated that chances of a new El Niño cycle in 2014 are becoming higher, although it is too early to provide an indication of this year's strength of the weather phenomenon.

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