05 January 1999
High prices lift India’s tea earnings

INDIA managed only a small increase in overseas sales of tea last year but boosted its earnings, courtesy of higher prices.

India exported 188 million kilograms of tea in the 11 months of 1998, 2% more than the same period the previous year.

Export earnings in the same period rose 25% to Rs19.85 billion (£282m) because the average export price rose to Rs105.36/kg.

The volume of Indias tea exports was hit last year by a fall in demand from Russia, its largest customer.

Traders now expect Russia to increase its tea buying to replace stocks.

Indias total tea production in the January-November period was 812m kg against 762m kg during the same period in 1997.

Record crops in the north-east region helped boost output.

  • Financial Times 05/01/99 page 29 (News Digest)