Roxas Holdings eyes sugar exports to S.Korea, Japan

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 17 2011 02:39 PM | Updated as of Aug 17 2011 10:47 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Sugar milling firm Roxas Holdings Inc. said Wednesday it will export raw sugar to South Korea and Japan in line with government efforts to seek new markets to address oversupply.

Roxas said its Central Azucarera Don Pedro Inc. unit had completed its first round of shipments to South Korea, with the next shipment expected to be made by the end of the month.

“The crop year just ended in June and production was much higher than anticipated. We see this as an opportunity to tap other export markets,” the company's chairman, Pedro Roxas, said.

“Since we cater primarily to the local industrial market, this will be the first time in five years that we are back into the export market outside the US,” he added.

The Philippines has committed to ship 66,000 tons of sugar to Japan, South Korea and Indonesia, according to the country's Sugar Regulatory Administration.

The Philippines expects to have sugar stocks of about 780,000 tons when the crop year ends on August 31. Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala said more than 300,000 tons could be sold overseas, about 100,000 tons above a previous target.

However, dealers have said quality concerns have made it difficult to find buyers for Philippine sugar.

Roxas said a slowdown in local demand as food and beverage manufacturers shift to high fructose corn syrup and other alternative sweeteners had contributed to the oversupply. - With a report from Reuters