Market Review of Coconut Fiber
Amid global pandemic, coir industry showed a pertinent growth. Latest data from India and Sri Lanka, the main coir producing countries, confirm the impressive performance of the industry. The two countries experienced an increase in both export volume and export revenue. This is in continuation of the positive market development from the last decade. It is worth noting that exports of coir products from India kept strengthening from 321 thousand tons in 2010 to 989 thousand tons in 2019 with compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13% over the period from 2010-2019. Meanwhile, Sri Lanka exports of coir products were also showing an increasing trend. During the period from 2010-2020, export volume of coir products from Sri Lanka was 360 thousand tons with CAGR of 4%. The average annual export revenue was Rs. 25,922 million or equivalent to US$133 million. Total export volume from the two countries in 2020 was more than 1,5 million tons creating export revenue of more than US$ 4 billion.
The latest report from Coir Board of India showed that the export of coir products from India during January-November 2020 was 1.04 million tons creating Rs. 311,267 lakh or around US$ 1.8 billion. The export volume is higher by 13 percent as compared to the same period last year. In terms of revenue, the export jumped by 22.6 percent against previous year’s revenue. Amongst all coir products, global demand for coir pith was still recorded the highest. During the period 0.64 million tons of coir pith from India was sent to international market followed by coir fibre accounting for 0.3 million tons.
During January-December 2020, export volume of coir-based products from Indonesia reached 37,899 tons generating more than US$ 9 millions of export earnings. The total export volume is insignificantly lower by 0.1 percent compared to the same period in the previous year. However, in terms of value, the export dropped by 27% reflecting lower prices of the products. Coir fibre and coir pith are the main products exported from Indonesia. China is still the major destination for coir products from Indonesia. During the period, 80% out of the total coir export was sent to China. Other destinations include South Korea, Japan, and Vietnam.
During January-December 2020, 14 coir-based products sent from Sri Lanka to the global market generating more than US$194.25 millions of export revenue or increased by 8.6% as compared to previous year’s revenue. Moulded coir products which is used for mainly horticulture purpose were the country’s highest contributor to the export revenue from coir based products for the period of January-December 2020. During the period, export value of moulded coir products was Rs. 25,126.31 million or equivalent to US$ 127.75 million, accounting for 66% of the total export value of coir based products. Compared to the previous year’s value, export of the product was higher by 12%. Mexico remained the major importer of Sri Lanka’s moulded coir products followed by USA, South Korea, and UK. Other products that significantly contributed to the export earnings were mattress fibre and coir pith.
In total, Price of coir fibre is showing relatively stable in Indonesia. During 2020, average FOB price of coir fibre in Indonesia was USD302/MT as compared to the average price a year earlier. Meanwhile, price of coir fibre in Sri Lanka showed a declining trend reaching US$107/MT in December 2020 with annual average of US$125/MT in 2020. The price in 2020 was 28% lower than the average price a year earlier. It is expected that the price will be going to stronger in 2021.In the last two months price has been going up by 8% from US$107/MT in December 2020 to US$116/MT in February 2021 reflecting a lower supply.