Taiwan- The tobacco industry in Taiwan will undergo changes in the next few years as the government-owned tobacco monopoly is privatized as part of the process for WTO accession. This months legislation was passed to change the tobacco industry from a monopoly to a private company. Under privatization, the Council of Agriculture will be responsible for leaf products, and the Department of National Treasury and Ministry of Finance will be responsible for the cigarette industry. After privatization, Taiwan Tobacco and Wine Bureau (TTWB) will become separate cigarette, beer, and distilled spirit/wine companies. This summer TTWB took several measures to prepare for privatization. It reduced the number of tobacco processing facilities from four to two and the number of cigarette factories from four to three. Upon privatization, the current monopoly tax on cigarette imports will be replaced with a 27-percent ad valorem tariff, a NTD 590 per 1000 pieces tobacco tax, and a 5-percent value-added tax.
Malawi Tobacco Auction Update: Through the 20th week, the Malawi Tobacco Control Commission reported 99,664 metric tons of burley sales, down nearly 6 percent from the same period last year. Burley prices are up 9 percent from the same period last year. So far, flue-cured tobacco sales reached 10,956 metric tons at auction. Last year 12,200 metric tons of flue-cured tobacco were sold in the same number of weeks. Flue-cured prices were 3 percent higher than last year.
Zimbabwe Tobacco Auction Update: Zimbabwes Tobacco Association reported 171,600 metric tons of flue-cured tobacco were sold through 21 weeks of the auction season at an average price of U.S.$1.76 per kilogram. At the same time last season, 173,700 metric tons was also sold at an average of U.S. $1.77.
USDA Announces 1999 Burley Tobacco Grade Support Rates: USDAs Commodity Credit Corporation announced grade loan rates for the 1999 crop of burley tobacco, based on the price support level of $1.789 per pound. Both burley associations, the Burley Tobacco Growers Cooperative Association and the Burley Stabilization Corporation, will deduct 1 cent per pound from the grade loan rates for administrative overhead costs. The 1999-crop grade loan rates range from $1.09 to $1.98 per pound for the 1999 crop. For the 1998 crop, the price support was $1.778 per pound and the loan rates ranged from $1.09 to $1.90 per pound.
USDA Announces 1999 Assessments For Dark Tobaccos: USDAs Commodity Credit Corporation announced that to qualify for price support loans, producers of 1999-crop fire-cured (type 21) and Virginia sun-cured (type 37) tobaccos must agree to pay no-net-cost assessments for deposit into no-net-cost accounts on all marketings. No-net-cost assessments are 2 cents per pound for fire-cured (type 21), and Virginia sun-cured (type 37) tobaccos, 1 cent per-pound for fire-cured (type 23), and dark air-cured (type 35). Fire-cured (type 22 ) and dark air-cured tobacco are not assessed a no-net-cost assessment.
U.S. Flue-Cured Auction Update: Through the fourth week of the 1999 season, total flue-cured gross sales reached 89,432 metric tons at an average price of $3.59 per kilogram. This represents a decrease in sales of over 13 percent and a slight decrease in price when compared to the same period a year ago. About 10 percent of sales have gone under loan so far this year compared to 15 percent a year ago.
U.S. TRADE SUMMARY FOR JANUARY-OCTOBER 1999
U.S. unmanufactured tobacco exports for January-August totaled 141,916 metric tons, valued at $939.9 million. This represents a 3-percent decrease in quantity and a 6-percent decrease in value when compared to January-August 1998. The leading U.S. leaf export markets so far in 1999 are: the European Union, 77,946 tons; Japan, 24,610 tons; the Russian Federation, 6,083 tons; Turkey, 5,147 tons; Malaysia, 4,121 tons; Korea, 3,530 tons; and Thailand, 2,609 tons.
Flue-cured exports for January-August 1999 reached 61,136 metric tons, valued at $428 million. This is down 10 percent in quantity and down 12 percent in value from January-August 1998. The leading U.S. flue-cured export markets so far in 1999 are: the European Union, 29,812 tons; Japan, 14,187 tons; Korea, 3,527 tons; Malaysia, 2,946 tons; and Turkey, 1,527 tons.
Burley exports for January-August 1999 totaled 42,002 tons, valued at $343 million, up 2 percent in quantity and 3 percent in value from January-August 1998. The leading U.S. burley export markets so far in 1999 are: the European Union, 28,565 tons; Japan, 5,849 tons; Thailand, 1,596 tons; the Philippines 1,439 tons; and Turkey, 1,340 tons.
U.S. cigarette exports in January-August 1999 totaled 103 billion pieces, valued at $2.17 billion, down 17 percent in quantity and 25 percent in value from January-August 1998. The leading U.S. cigarette export markets so far in 1999 are: Japan, 47 billion pieces; the European Union, 16.9 billion pieces (to mainly Belgium/Luxembourg, a major transshipment point for exports to other European markets); Saudi Arabia, 6.5 billion pieces; Cyprus, 4.5 billion pieces; Lebanon,
4 billion pieces; Israel, 3.1 billion pieces; Singapore, 2.2 billion pieces; Hong Kong, 2.2 billion pieces; and the United Arab Emirates, 1.5 billion pieces.
U.S. exports of bulk smoking tobacco for January-August 1999 totaled 43,402 metric tons, valued at $347 million, down slightly in quantity and down 5 percent in value from January-August 1998. The leading export markets so far in 1999 are: the European Union, 11,994 tons; Turkey, 8,712 tons; Japan, 6,569 tons; Poland, 4,304 tons; and Egypt, 4,283 tons.
U.S. unmanufactured tobacco imports for consumption (duty paid) for January-August 1999 totaled 154,589 tons, valued at $497 million, down 2 percent in quantity and 6 percent in value when compared to January-August 1998. Imports of oriental tobacco, the leading tobacco type imported by the United States, reached 37,664 tons, valued at $173 million in 1999, down 35 percent in quantity and down 37 percent in value when compared to the same period in 1998. Flue-cured imports so far in 1999 totaled 47,617 tons, valued at $161 million, up nearly two-fold in quantity and value from January-August 1998. Burley imports for January-August 1999 totaled 22,922 tons, valued at $76 million, up nearly 27 percent in quantity and up 24 percent in value from the same period in 1998. U.S. imports of stems and scrap tobacco so far in 1999 totaled 26,049 tons, valued at $11 million, down 27 percent in quantity and down 24 percent in value from January-August 1998. So far in 1999, the leading suppliers to the United States of unmanufactured tobacco imports for consumption are: Brazil, 43,627 tons; Turkey, 28,999 tons; Malawi, 13,948 tons; the European Union, 10,304 tons; Argentina, 7,916 tons; Zimbabwe, 7,773 tons; Canada, 7,403 tons; and the Dominican Republic, 5,275 tons.
U.S. general imports (actual arrivals) of unmanufactured tobacco so far in 1999 totaled 149,757 tons, valued at $469 million. This represents a nearly 18-percent decrease in quantity and 21-percent decrease in value from the same period in 1998.
1 Metric Ton = 2,204.622 Pounds
1 Pound = 0.0004536 Metric Tons
1 Kilogram = 2.2046 Pounds
1 Pound = 0.4535924 Kilograms
1 Hectare = 2.471 Acres
1 Acre = 0.4047 Hectares
Dry Weight (DW) = 88 to 92 percent of Farm Sales Weight (FSW) 1/
1/ Unmanufactured tobacco's conversion from dry weight to farm sales weight varies depending on a country's cultivation and processing conditions and practices. The average conversion factor ranges from 88 to 92 percent, but it can be as low as 60 percent.