MUMBAI: The third quarter of this financial year saw a sharp increase in imports of urea and di-ammonium phosphate (DAP), the most widely-used fertilizers, mainly due to pre-stocking ahead of the rabi season and a rise in prices of raw materials that forced consumers to turn to overseas markets for finished fertilizers. While urea imports went up nearly a third, DAP imports shot up 66.4%. The third widely-used fertilizer, muriate of potash (MOP), however, saw a marginal decline in imports during the quarter. Domestic urea production, which constitutes about 60% of the overall fertilizer production, was down 1.6% while imports increased 27.6%, indicating that the decline in local output was compensated by the increase in imports, Care Ratings said in a report.
Production was down also due to the effectiveness of the practice of neem coating of urea, the report said.