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Asia Coffee: Vietnam shipments seen halted on holiday; Indonesia trade quiet

By Reuters   January 31, 2019 | 06:53 pm PT
Asia Coffee: Vietnam shipments seen halted on holiday; Indonesia trade quiet
A woman dries coffee beans on a road in Vietnam's northern province of Son La. Photo by Reuters/Kham
Coffee shipments from Vietnam are expected to fall sharply next week on the Lunar New Year holiday.

"Markets in Vietnam will close next week and I think export activities won’t resume until the holiday is over," a trader based in Ho Chi Minh City said.

Farmers in the Central Highlands sold coffee at 32,400-33,600 dong ($1.41-$1.46) per kg COFVN-DAK on Thursday, down from a range of 32,600-33,800 dong a week earlier.

Traders in Vietnam offered 5 percent black and broken grade 2 robusta COFVN-G25-SAI at a $50 per tonne discount to the March contract, compared with $60-$70 discount last week.

Farmers in the Central Highlands, the country’s largest coffee growing area, have sold more than 50 percent of their newly harvested beans of the 2018-19 crop year, traders said.

Data released by the government’s General Statistics Office on Tuesday showed coffee exports from Vietnam in January will likely fall 19.1 percent from a year earlier to 175,000 tonnes.

Last week, traders forecast January coffee shipments would total 200,000 tonnes.

Coffee export revenue for Vietnam, the world’s biggest producer of the robusta bean, will likely fall 27.2 percent to $305 million in January, the GSO said.

Meanwhile, in Indonesia, many coffee exporters won’t even bother setting prices or make any offers to foreign buyers due to a lack of beans.

Indonesia’s premium for the grade 4 defect 80 robusta COFID-G4-USD stayed flat at $50-$60 to the March contract on Thursday, a trader in Lampung said.

The trader expects activities to start picking up pace in March as the mini harvest is expected in some areas in southern Sumatra.

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