Evergrowing list of countries seeking Morocco’s phosphates, fertilizers
Amid a global shortage in fertilizers and their inputs because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the suspension of traditional supplies from Eastern Europe, many countries have expressed interest in Morocco’s fertilizer products, including Bangladesh, Brazil, Japan, Peru…
Bangladesh is planning to import 40,000 tons of DAP (di-ammonium phosphate) fertilizer from Morocco’s phosphates and fertilizers producer, OCP.
According to Bangladeshi media, the government approved, on May 18, the import of 40,000 tons of DAP fertilizer from OCP. This purchase comes following the blocking of imports from Russia and Belarus, caused by the Russian-Ukrainian war.
During a virtual briefing, Assistant Secretary to the Cabinet (Bangladesh government’s decision-making body), Zillur Rahman Chowdhury, said the fertilizer would cost $1,775.5 per ton, which is higher than the previous market price, set at $1156.
Brazilian Minister of Agriculture, Marcos Montes, visited Morocco last week and discussed with Head of OCP, Mustapha Terrab, the opening of a new phosphate fertilizer manufacturing plant in Brazil.
The new processing unit in Brazil will manufacture phosphate products from phosphate rock imported from Morocco. The plant will be built in the city of Sao Luis, located in northeastern Brazil.
Japan is also looking to Morocco to foster its food security in a global context marked by a surge in prices of soil nutrients.
Japanese deputy agriculture minister Takebe Arata who was visiting Rabat this week told the media that his country is seeking larger imports of fertilizers and phosphates from Morocco.
“Morocco is a global phosphates power and that is the reason why my country is interested in importing a considerable quantity of fertilizers,” the Japanese official said following talks with the Moroccan agriculture minister.
Recently, Peru announced plans to purchase Moroccan fertilizers.
“There have been talks with the governments of Morocco, Venezuela, and Bolivia. Once the Emergency Decree is approved, the purchase will proceed. The logistical coordination for the transfer is already being made so that it reaches the farmers quickly,” Peru’s Minister of Agrarian Development Oscar Zea said.
Meanwhile, Michigan Senate has adopted a resolution urging Congress to pass legislation that would allow farmers, along with trade associations representing farmers, to import fertilizers and fertilizer ingredients from Morocco.
The resolution, endorsed last Tuesday, was sponsored by republican Senator Curt VanderWall. It calls on lawmakers to petition the U.S. International Trade Commission to temporarily waive tariffs on fertilizer imports from the North African Kingdom.
In February 2021, following a petition filed by Mosaic Company, the U.S. Department of Commerce decided to impose countervailing duties of 19.97 % on U.S. imports of Moroccan phosphate fertilizers.
Morocco has taken a central stage at global food security efforts as it controls the globe’s largest phosphates reserves.
In this context, OCP said it will increase production by 10% this year to meet increasing demand amid a global shortage of fertilizers triggered by Russia’s decision to halt all exports of soil nutrients.
Morocco has around 75% of the world’s reserves of phosphate rock, a vital mineral used to make phosphate-based fertilizers.
OCP announced lately that its revenue in the first quarter of 2022 reached $2.67 billion, representing a 77% increase compared to $1.59 billion reported the same period last year.