Erbil Expo in Iraq increases CTC leaf exports from Coonoor tea auctions

Exporters of Coonoor tea hope to receive more orders thanks to strong demand from Iraqi buyers after the country hosted the Erbil Expo two weeks ago. Erbil, also called Hawler, is the capital and most populous city of the Kurdistan region of Iraq.  President of the South Indian Tea Exporters Association, Dipak Shah,  told Business Line that  Iraqi buyers have shown strong interest in the larger  CTC leaves, with prices rising by ₹ 15/kg in three weeks. Coonoor is the main market for these special grades and Iraq is the only country that buys the varieties in large quantities, he said.  According to Shah, the emerging situation would be a relief to the tea-exporting community of South India. This would bring in more business, especially since demand for beer abroad has been muted by the ongoing crisis in West Asia.  At the same time, he added that foreign markets are very volatile in changing situations and the buyer base can be changed to accept large quantities.   

 Good sale in the dust

    Meanwhile, 81 percent of the 14,43,640 kilograms offered were sold at the Coonoor tea auctions. A good 80 percent of the 4,24,461 kilograms offered for sale on 44 were also sold in the dust market. Global Tea Auctioneers said the better average CTC leaf varieties were ₹ 1-2 higher and sometimes even more, depending on quality. But expensive and better drinks tended to be simpler, and quality sets sometimes sold for ₹4-5 and more. The broken ones were sometimes ₹ 1-2 more and sometimes more.  However, the market was generally irregular, and much less demand was observed for orthodox paper sales. In the dust of CTC, the expensive and better liquid variants were sometimes cheaper by ₹ 2-3 or more.

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