China corn purchases from US increase to 4 million metric tons
Number could grow further before year ends
China has purchased 120,000 metric tons of U.S. corn for shipment by the end of August, bringing the country's total confirmed purchases this season to nearly 4 million metric tons, according to reports.
Another 120,000 metric tons were sold to an unknown purchaser for delivery in the next September-to-August marketing year, and is believed to be to China, as well, said analysts and traders. China has bought 1 million metric tons of corn from the U.S. in the last two marketing years as the country's demand has outpaced its domestic production, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture predicted that it would import a 17-year high of 4 million metric tons in the 2011–2012 marketing year. That number may now be revised, to 4.287 million metric tons, said analysts.
Confirmed sales to China for the 2011–2012 year currently stand at 3.92 million metric tons, but the number could be higher if any of the "unknown" sales are to China.