Storms leave tyres 'costing more'

Heavy rain storms across the world's major rubber-producing regions are expected to see the price of tyres soar, it has been reported.

Analysts revealed that the bad weather, as well as droughts earlier in the year, have caused problems for rubber tree-tappers working on Asian plantations.

It is thought the news will also see people paying more for condoms and gloves - with the conditions affecting global production at a time when demand for rubber is on the rise.

The news could see people adding expensive new tyres tocar insurance premiums and other motoring-related costs.

Nick Peksa, analyst at commodity specialist Mintec, said: "The world is heading for a shortfall in natural rubber production due to rains and floods in the rubber-growing regions of Thailand and Indonesia which drenched farms and curbed harvesting, and prices have strengthened as prospects of the biggest shortage since 2007 grow."

Mr Peksa warned that production in Thailand, the world's biggest producer, may drop as much as 5% to three million tonnes this year as rain disrupts the tapping.

Indonesia, the second largest grower, may total 2.4 million tonnes, less than an earlier estimate of 2.6 million tonnes.

Mr Peksa went on: "Sales of rubber are increasing the most in six years, helped by what the International Monetary Fund says will be the fastest global economic growth since 2007."

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