OAO Phosagro, the largest maker of phosphate fertilizers in Europe, sees Indian prices buoyed this year after reports U.S. rival Mosaic Co. is seeking a rate above a Florida benchmark, Chief Executive Officer Maxim Volkov said.
PhosChem, a trader representing Mosaic and Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan, is negotiating Indian prices of as much as $550 a metric ton, Volkov said on a conference call today, citing reports by Fertecon Ltd. and researcher FMB Consultants Ltd.
“This is positive and may lead to an upward correction in prices,” he said. Benchmark rates for diammonium phosphate in Florida fell as low as $482.50 in February, Bloomberg data show.
Phosagro agreed to sell at least 600,000 tons of phosphate fertilizers to India’s Nagarjuna Group through February 2013 at a rate linked to prices that will be set by PhosChem in its negotiations, the Moscow-based producer announced on April 12.
The Russian government has hired BNP Paribas SA to sell the state’s 20 percent holding in Phosagro’s OAO Apatit unit this year, Volkov said. The company proposed that the state swap its Apatit shares into Phosagro equities before selling them into the market because the parent’s stock is more liquid, he said.
Phosagro scrapped a proposed share buyback to prevent decreasing the company’s free-float further, Volkov said. A Mosaic spokesman wasn’t available to comment on negotiations.