India's natural rubber consumption rose by about 5.6 per cent in the first half of the current financial year, while production rose only by 1.1 per cent. The total consumption in the April-September 2012 period stood at 5,01,940 tonnes, compared with 4,75,485 tonnes in the year-ago period, while production stood at 3,95,700 tonnes, compared with 3,91,400 tonnes in the corresponding period last year.
The demand-supply gap is widening on a monthly basis necessitating more imports. Tyre sector has consumed 5-6% more natural rubber during the first half of 2012-13. India's natural rubber imports are likely to drop by 27 percent to 150,000 tonnes in the current year ending March 2013. India as the world's fourth-biggest producer of natural rubber imported 205,433 tonnes of the tyre-making raw material last year.
India is likely to produce 942,000 tonnes of natural rubber in the current year, up from 899,400 tonnes a year ago The country's rubber consumption is likely to edge up by 4 percent in 2012/13 to 1.006 million tonnes.