ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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World Nitrogen Fertiliser Economy-Developing Countries Place in Production and Trade

Nitrogen fertiliser consumption in developing countries almost doubled in the decade ending in 1979 and most of the increase was satisfied by a rise in their domestic production; gross nitrogen imports rose by only 31 per cent. Most of their 1979 imports were from the nearest industrial countries; but urea was exported front-Western Europe as far as South and East Asia, and DAP from the USA to South Asia. The third major N fertiliser imported by developing countries, ammonium sulphate, was chiefly produced as a chemical by-product by industrial countries and exported to neighbouring developing countries, Large quantities of urea were bought on tender by central buying agencies of East and South Asian countries from large producers and their cartels; bunching of orders and inelasticity of demand ted to fluctuations in prices as well as freights. Most of the DAP was bought by buyers directly from US producers; there was no open market or competitive price formation, but major importing countries also produced some DAP. The price of ammonium sulphate varied so as to find a market for an elastic supply. In the future, ammonia is likely to emerge as a fertiliser intermediate of considerable interest to developing countries.

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