Market Review of Coconut Shell Charcoal
Price of coconut shell charcoal showed a decreasing trend in the last quarter of 2021. In Sri Lanka, price of the charcoal dropped from USD478/MT in September 2021 to USD430/MT in December 2021. Similarly, prices in Philippines, and India declined by 6% and 6.4% respectively. Meanwhile, price of the product went up by 3% in Indonesia in the last quarter of 2021. Moreover, price of coconut shell charcoal during 2021 was higher than the price a year earlier. On average, price of the charcoal was 28.5% higher in Sri Lanka, 31.6% higher in Philippines, 8.7% higher in Indonesia, and 23% higher in India. A higher demand and a shortage in supply strengthened the charcoal prices during 2021.
Meanwhile, price of activated carbon recorded an increasing trend during 2021. The price started to level up since the first half of 2021. In Sri Lanka, price of activated carbon in December 2020 was US$2,358/MT and reached US$2,934/MT in November 2021 or increased by 24%. Likewise, price of activated carbon went up in Indonesia. On average, export price of activated carbon from Indonesia was US$1,522/MT which was 5.5% higher compared to the price a year earlier.
As expected, global demand of activated carbon in 2021 continued to decline as shipment delays prolong. During 2021, global imports of activated carbon was expected to ease to level of 0.8 million tons or reduced by 3%. The decrease was following the trend in the previous year. In the period of January-December 2020, global imports of activated carbon were 0.83 million tons which was lower by 6.2% compared to the 2019’s volume. In 2021, Japan was the largest importing country for the product followed US and Germany. Japan imported more than 85 thousand tons which was higher by 11.5% as opposed to the volume a year earlier. Meanwhile, US import of activated carbon derived from coconut shell charcoal is expected to slightly improve. US Census Bureau recorded import of the product during January-November 2021 was 41,477 MT which was increased by 0.32% as compared to previous year’s volume.
Export of coconut shell based activated carbon was increasing amid economic challenges due to covid-19 pandemic. In 2021, shipments of the activated carbon from several main producing countries were growing. In the period of January-November 2020, Sri Lanka dispatched 47,383 MT of coconut shell charcoal based activated carbon to the global market creating export earnings of US$127.9 million. The export leveled up by 15% as opposed to previous year’s volume for the same period. Main destinations for the activated carbon from Sri lanka include China, Japan, Turkey and UK.
In the period of January-October 2021, India exported 108,143 tons of activated carbon valued US$211.4 million which was 37.8% higher than export volume a year earlier. USA was still a main destination for activated carbon from India. USA absorbed more than 8% of Indian activated carbon during January-October 2021. Other major destinations of activated carbon from India were Sri Lanka, Germany, Russia, Belgium, Japan, and China.
Another major exporting country for coconut shell based activated carbon is the Philippines. During period of January-September 2021, Philippines shipped 55,600 tons of the activated carbon to global market. The volume was lower by 7% as opposed to the 2020’s export volume for the same period. During the period, major importing countries of the product from Philippines were Germany, Japan, USA, Sri Lanka and South Korea.
Meanwhile, export of activated carbon from Indonesia continued to decline in 2021. During January-November 2021, export of activated carbon from Indonesia was 21,532 MT. The export went down by 15% compared to previous year’s volume for the same period. It created export earnings of US$32.44 million. China, Japan, Germany, Taiwan and Australia were the main destinations of activated carbon from Indonesia.