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Analysis of China’s Pesticide Export to Eastern European Countries in 2019qrcode

Feb. 25, 2020

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Feb. 25, 2020

Analysis of China’s Pesticide Export to Eastern European Countries in 2019

According to the National Bureau of Statistics, the national yield of chemical pesticide reached 2.083 million tons in 2018, down by 9.5% on a cumulative basis. The national yield of chemical pesticide increased to some extent in the first eleven months of 2019, registered a total of 2.018 million tons from January to November 2019. The annual yield in 2019 is most likely to be equal to that in 2018, the probability of increase is less than 10%.

In terms of pesticide export, this article uses the European region as an example. China exported a total of 149.46 KT pesticides to Europe from January to November, 2019, representing 10% of China’s national pesticide export volume, with the export value being USD 1314.42 million, representing 12% of China’s total. The export volume increased by 2.8%, and the export value increased by 10.93% on a year-on-year basis. Eastern Europe serves as a barn of the entire Europe, and its pesticide demand dominates the European region. 60% of the 149.46 KT pesticides that are exported from China to Europe went to the Eastern European region (15 countries and regions including Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Latvia, Belarus, Croatia, Slovenia, Lithuania, Serbia, and Hungary), with the export value accounting for only 30% of China’s export to Europe. This article analyzes China’s pesticide export to the Eastern European market.
 
From January to November 2019, China exported a total of 90.19 KT pesticides (down by 1.2% YoY) worth USD 643.07 million (up by 1.1% YoY) to Eastern Europe. Of this total, the export value and volume of TC were USD383.01 million and 32.13 KT respectively, increasing by 9.41% and 3.94% YoY respectively; the export value and volume of formulations were USD260.06 million and 58.06 KT respectively, decreasing by 9% and 3.79% YoY respectively. 
 
The volume and value of China’s pesticide export to Eastern Europe were relatively steady. The pesticide prices remained a higher level after a general rise in 2018. 
 
Analysis of China’s Export to Eastern Europe from Jan. to Nov. 2019 (By country)
 
Table 1: Value and volume of China’s pesticide export to Eastern European Destination Countries from Jan. to Nov., 2019
No.
Country
Export Value
(million USD)
YoY %
Export Volume
(000 tons)
YoY %
1
Russia
310.53
+13.13%
37.84
+0.47%
2
Ukraine
140.17
-16.16%
30.72
-0.8%
3
Poland
57.49
+7.42%
5.16
+1.77%
4
Latvia
38.97
+70.54%
4.49
+39%
5
Belarus
31.76
-10.98%
2.91
-35.6%
6
Croatia
20.86
+5.6%
4.33
+38.78%
7
Slovenia
16.24
-24.32%
0.94
-54.15%
8
Lithuania
11.26
-11.06%
1.19
-11.85%
9
Serbia
6.38
+81.76%
1.59
+69.15%
10
Hungary
5.54
-61.82%
0.45
-74.86%
 
Other
3.87
-33.73%
0.55
-3.5%
Total
 -
643.07
+1.1%
90.19
-1.2%


Figure 1: Amounts of the pesticide imported from China by Eastern Europe (By country)
 
According to the data from January to November 2019, and by referring to the trend of change in volume and value since 2017, the most steady market performance occurred in Russia and Poland. In Russia, this was mainly attributed to the increase in TC dominated by herbicides, including Glyphosate, Quizalofop-p-ethyl and Metamitron TC. In Poland, this was also mainly attributed to TC, mainly including Glyphosate, Azoxystrobin, Difenoconazole, Imazamox, and Nicosulfuron. But there were also products indicating an obvious decline, such as Metazachlor and Quizalofop-p-ethyl. These two countries took up 57% of the total value of China’s pesticide export to Eastern Europe. 


Figure 2: Change in China's total export volume from 2017 to 2019
 
 
Other countries showing an increase in both export volume and value include Latvia, Croatia and Serbia. Latvia’s import increase was mainly attributed to the sugar beet herbicides such as Desmedipham, Phenmedipham, Metamitron, Ethofumesate TC, and Propiconazole TC. Croatia’s import increase was mostly attributed to the Glyphosate TC and Chlorpyrifos TC, while the import volume of S-metolachlor TC decreased by 66%, making it a product with the greatest decline of export volume among the top 10 products exported from China to Croatia. 
 
Another country is Serbia, where many products were newly imported as compared with 2018. These products include Bentazone TC, Nicosulfuron TC, Fluazinam TC, Vondcaptan TC, Pendimethalin TC, Azoxystrobin TC, Clomazone TC, and Glufosinate TC. This indicates the potential of Serbia to become a new highland for China’s export to Europe. 
 
Other countries showing a decline of export volume include Ukraine, Belarus, Slovenia, Lithuania and Hungary. There was a little change in Ukraine’s import from China, which declined by 0.8%. Ukraine witnessed the decline by 35.6%, which was mainly attributed to such TC as Glyphosate, Imidacloprid, Propiconazole, Epoxiconazole and Azoxystrobin. However, there were also new imported TC products as compared with 2018, such as Thidiazuron, Quizalofop-p-ethyl, Fludioxonil, Trifloxystrobin, and Difenoconazole. 
 
In Slovenia, the volume of import from China was down by 54%, which was mainly attributed to the decrease of such TC as Flufenacet, Tebuconazole, and S-metolachlor. There were also some new products imported from China, for example, Prothioconazole, Epoxiconazole, and Cyproconazole TC. Particularly, the import value of Prothioconazole was zero previously, and in 2019 it became a pesticide product second to Flufenacet by the value of import from China, accounting for 15% of the country’s total import.
In Lithuania, the volume of import from China was down by 11.85% from January to November 2019 as compared with the same period in the previous year, which was mainly attributed to Glyphosate TC and 2,4-D TC. New imported pesticides were Imidacloprid TC and formulation, Diquat dibromide SL, and Tebuconazole TC, etc.
 
Finally, among the top 10 countries in Eastern Europe to which China’s pesticides are exported, the country with the greatest YoY rate of decline from 2018 was Hungary, whose import volume from China was down by 74.86%, and import value down by 61.82%. Its import volume of Diquat dibromide TK declined from 568 tons in 2018 to zero, that of Glyphosate TC declined from 172 tons in 2018 to zero, and that of Propiconazole TC declined from 79 tons to zero. And the import volume of Tebuconazole, Cyproconazole, Metribuzin and other products from China was also zero in 2019. However, there were also new products imported from China, such as Acetamiprid, Carbofuran, Clodinafop-propargyl, Cymoxanil, Flutriafol and other TC. 

Figure 3: Changes in China's total export value in 2017-2019
 
Analysis of China’s Top 20 products exported to Eastern Europe 
 
According to statistics, China exported 32.13KT TC worth USD 383.01 million to the Eastern European region from January to November, 2019. Among the TC, 55% was exported to Russia, 13% to Poland, 8% to Belarus, 7% to Latvia, 6% to Ukraine, 4% to Slovenia, 2% to Croatia and Lithuania respectively, 1% to Serbia, and 1% to Hungary.
 
Of the total volume of TC, Glyphosate accounted for 10%, followed by Tebuconazole, which accounted for 5%. In addition, there were other TC products with a soaring volume of import by Eastern Europe, including Fenoxaprop-ethyl, Fenoxaprop-p-ethyl, 2,4-D-2-ethylhexyl, Lambda-cyhalothrin, Thidiazuron, and Difenoconazole. Products showing a decline and a greater rate of decline include Propiconazole, Metamitron and Diquat dibromide. As compared with India’s export data, it is easy to find that many products, especially Propiconazole, experienced a rise in the export volume from India to Eastern Europe, which filled the space of decline in China’s export volume. Many insiders predicted that products that would pose a danger to China’s pesticides in the future include 2,4-D, Cyhalothrin and other products.
 
Table 2: China’s Top20 TC exported to Eastern Europe in Jan.-Nov. 2019 (ranking by amount)
No.
Product
Export volume (tons)
Export value ( million USD)
YoY%
Amount of Exporter
1
Glyphosate
10,322.35
39.80
+0.53%
31
2
Tebuconazole
1,614.78
31.08
+16.74%
24
3
Imidacloprid
1,083.61
22.89
+9.28%
21
4
Fenoxaprop-ethyl
312.00
14.79
+51.68%
5
5
Quizalofop-p-ethyl
409.94
13.95
+49.39%
13
6
Propiconazole
826.65
12.57
-30.64%
14
7
2,4-D-2-ethylhexyl
3,643.67
10.71
+98.99%
6
8
Bentazone
641.20
10.28
+17.68%
10
9
Fenoxaprop-p-ethyl
167.13
8.82
+264.52%
8
10
Lambda-cyhalothrin
175.66
8.63
+96.43%
16
11
Azoxystrobin
178.45
8.30
+8.92%
10
12
Epoxiconazole
78.20
8.12
-14.54%
17
13
Imazamox
72.55
7.67
-7.94%
12
14
Phenmedipham
400.35
7.38
+60.04%
7
15
Thidiazuron
142.00
7.29
+7788.89%
3
16
Florasulam
68.06
7.10
+14.09%
7
17
Metamitron
318.00
7.06
-32.16%
5
18
Difenoconazole
210.21
6.67
+92.76%
13
19
Desmedipham
345.40
6.31
+64.02%
6
20
Diquat dibromide
1,183.48
5.78
-20.77%
5

As for formulations, China exported a total of 58.06KT pesticide formulations (down by 3.79% YoY) worth USD 260.06 million (down by 9% YoY) to Eastern Europe in January-November 2019. Of this total, 39% was exported to Russia, 45% to Ukraine, 5% to Latvia, 4% to Croatia, 3% to Poland, 2% to Serbia, and 1% to Lithuania and Slovenia, respectively. The export to Hungary was very little, and further declined from 2018.
 
Table 3: China’s Top 20 formulations exported to Eastern Europe in Jan.-Nov. 2019 (ranking by amount)
No.
Product
Export volume
(tons)
Export value
(million USD)
Amount of Exporter
1
Glyphosate-isopropylammonium 41% SL
12,148.17
20.83
33
2
Bentazone 480g/L SL
1,293.09
9.55
14
3
Cypermethrin 5% + Chlorpyrifos 50% EC
1,775.38
9.54
21
4
Diquat dibromide 150g/L SL
3,430.00
8.79
3
5
Metolachlor 960g/L EC
2,188.87
7.59
12
6
Glyphosate 41% SL
3,295.07
6.41
6
7
2,4-D-2-ethylhexyl 453g/L + Florasulam 6g/L SE
1,411.78
5.05
18
8
Imidacloprid 350g/L SC
536.54
4.60
16
9
Tribenuron-methyl 75% WG
183.25
4.54
31
10
Imidacloprid 600g/L FS
379.46
4.53
9
11
Glyphosate 30% SL
2,546.09
4.45
14
12
Glyphosate-isopropylammonium 62% SL
2,079.72
4.39
3
13
Haloxyfop-P-methyl 108g/L EC
686.74
4.30
12
14
Imidacloprid 15% + Beta-cyfluthrin 5% SC
384.14
3.85
1
15
Azoxystrobin 250g/L SC
259.28
3.69
18
16
Clopyralid 75% SG
170.33
3.60
6
17
Tebuconazole 430g/L SC
392.43
3.47
15
18
Clethodim 240g/L EC
381.88
3.45
13
19
Quizalofop-p-ethyl 5% EC
531.96
3.44
10
20
Nicosulfuron 40g/L OD
756.94
3.24
15

China’s export of pesticide to the Eastern European region was still dominated by TC. As many local companies invested more to their plants, the proportion of TC may further go up. Serbia is likely to become a new entrance to the European market. Furthermore, India is gradually seizing China’s cake in the trading market. Next, the author will provide a detailed analysis of India’s pesticide export. Please stay tuned.
 
AgroPages will further play a role of bridge connecting China and other countries, introduce superior products to overseas customers, and find out excellent local partners for Chinese enterprises.
 
If you are interested in Pesticide import and export report, please contact AgroPages via agropages@vip.163.com.


Survey on purchasing from China
 
At the end of 2019, AgroPages conducted an Annual Survey to companies globally who had business with China. The survey investigated the impact of China's pesticide production and export on their business, as well as the latest changes in procurement requirements.

The biggest challenges encountered in purchasing from China in 2019
 
Compared to previous years, the explosion in Xiangshui made the situation of Chinese procurement even worse. Almost all overseas buyers participating in the survey mentioned product shortages, high prices, and delayed shipments. In addition, the lack of registration documents and the stability of product quality are also one of the issues raised. The instability of international exchange rates has also disrupted their financial expenditure balance. Some businesses have suffered severely. 
 
Respondent from East European (the following are abbreviated as respondents' nationality/region): The main challenges were: unpredictability of price trends, higher price level for certain materials, such as cyproconazole, azoxystrobin, tebuconazole, mefenpyr-diethyl, tribenuron-methyl as well deficiency of several active ingredients due to stop of the production: dimethoate, tribenuron, clodinafop, triasulfuron, etc. 
 
Delays in shipping and even cancelling orders have severely affected the business of some overseas companies. For example, an respondent from a Vietnamese company mentioned that due to the sudden shutdown of the factory, the order they signed could only be cancelled. The situation for a Russian company is even worse.
 
Russian: No matter confirming order 3-4 months ahead with a 100% delivery we faced significant delays in shipment. As our company operates in Russia where agrarian season is just once a year in the very end such situation caused a big stock in our warehouses that we were late to sell in season time. Stock means frozen money in cargo as it led to the decrease in our purchase volumes for next 2020 year.

South America: Today to achieve security in deliveries and competitive prices, you must offer a volume and periodicity in the purchase. This situation favors great players and complicates the smallest. There are also mergers between Chinese companies and companies providing row materials and intermediaries have increased their strategic strength.

Changes in procurement requirements
 
Whether it is the European and American markets with strict regulations, or some less-developed regions such as Southeast Asia, finding new compounds that can replace high-toxicity and high-risk pesticides has become a very urgent need. The requirements for glyphosate , paraquat, carbofuran, chlorpyrifos, carbaryl, copper oxychloride will be replacing by some new products, such as spirotetramat, fluopyram and sulfaxaflor. Some companies have put forward need for specific pest control, and many of our respondents have suggested that they want to find bio-pesticide and bio-fertilizer suitable for organic farming. Some companies with certain strength began to focus on the research and development of their own new products.
 
Germany: The regulatory situation in EU is nightmarish, we must look for more reliable options, for example substitutes for Neonics.

Vietnam: Government banned Carbendazim, Chlorpyrifos ethyl, Fipronil, 24D, Paraquat, Glyphosate. Our business has been greatly affected. We may use glufosinate as a new herbicide replacement.

East Europe: Countries in the CIS region was not affected by this trend as it happened in EU and the USA. There are many active ingredients which are banned in EU, however are still used at Russia, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan. We are looking for replacement of some neocotinoids like imidacloprid, thiametoxam and will replace it by acetamiprid. 

Russia: Our R&D department is already carrying studies for finding efficient product substitutes of banned agrochemicals. Recently our team managed to find bio-herbicide based on nonanoic acid. Still for sure it's not a complete solution for ‘glyphosate problem’ that all world faces but still a small light in the end of dark tunnel. At least for small private farms it can be used efficiently. 

Bangladesh: The banning or phasing-out of traditional agrochemicals will affect future business. We are looking for products to replace carbofuran against Rice Stem Borer, alternative to glyphosate and paraquate, and new insecticide molecules against borer pest/sucking pest. 
 
The future trend of China's pesticide industry in the eyes of overseas buyers
 
There is consensus of some trends in China's pesticide development. In the industry as a whole, consolidation will continue, small scale manufacture closing down, and some production may be transferred to remote areas in northwest China or directly to foreign countries. At the enterprise level, some companies have stated that they will put more investment in R & D on new compounds. Exports will gradually shift from technicals to formulations.
 
In terms of product availability and its price, the unstable supply chains and more cost on environmental compliance will increase the price of agrochemical in general. More than half of the respondents also expressed pessimism.
 
Philippine: If ever the supply will normalize, I don't think the price will go down. Less competition means they can control the market and thus the price will just plateau over time.

South Africa: Agrochemical formulations supply will be a big challenge for the local producers in China in near future. Many of overseas customers already diverted their part of sourcing from China to India. Even many China producers are showing very much interest in come to India and investing with Agrochemicals producers in India now.

Malaysia: Many of China manufacturers will divert their activities to other countries in order to diversify the risk of solely produce in China. Big customers would like to work with manufacturer with risk management option. The cost of products will be increase due to high waste treatment cost. Manufacturer will find way to improve their technical knowhow to invent the method that would not generate too much of waste that need to treat. 
 
Some interviewees expressed confidence in the future of pesticides in China. They believe that the industry will gradually adjust itself, represented by large enterprises. More companies will focus on developing innovative products. A Russian respondent also predicted that Chinese pesticide companies will enter the Russian market more and occupy a considerable market share.
 
Eastern European: The Chinese industry will slowly but surely adjust to the current governmental situation. Some larger and stronger companies will update their factories and restart the production. Small enterprises which cannot resist the environmental and administrative pressure will be probably shutting down. 

Germany: Hopefully the situation will stabilize with upgraded manufacturing practices. This may take some time as the government is keen to ensure improved safety and environment. 

Estonia: Chinese companies will focus most innovative products.

Russia: I believe that in coming 5-7 years in Russia local generic companies will almost disappear. The more and large Chinese factories are starting to be interested in Russian market. Some of them are even finishing their own registrations. And this trend will only continue. Within definite period of time this market will be divided between 3 strong groups of companies that will have almost equal market shares: multinationals, local manufacturers and Chinese (probably Indian) factories. 
 


This article has been published in the magazine 
2020 China Pesticide Suppliers Guide

 
Source: AgroNews

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