Pakistan expects a shortfall of about 1.2 million tonnes of sugar after floods damaged the 2010/11 crop, officials said on Thursday, meaning the country will continue to import the sweetener to meet demand.
The estimate was presented at a ministerial meeting to review the stocks situation, according to a statement by the Ministry of Industries and Production.
“After taking the flood losses into account a gap of around 1.2 million tonnes … was expected between production and consumption of sugar in 2010/11,” the statement said.
No statistics were given about the expected sugar output but a senior official, who attended the meeting, said it was estimated at 3 million tonnes.
Pakistan annually consumes about 4.2 million tonnes of sugar.
The total domestic stocks stood at 400,000 tonnes of sugar, the meeting was informed.
The country produced little over 3 million tonnes of white sugar from the 2009/10 crop and floated several tenders this year to import a total of 1.2 million tonnes of sugar.
Anjum Bashir, the chairman of the state-run Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP), which issued the sugar tenders, told Reuters that a total of 423,000 tonnes of sugar has already arrived and the remaining quantity was expected in the next few months.