A study on the nature of foreign trade of Indian natural rubber
*Corresponding Author Email: Rajeshwari.email@example.com
Natural rubber is one of the most important raw materials of several modern industries, which is produced from the latex derived from the bark of rubber tree. Originated in the Amazon rainforest region, it was later carried to several tropical regions of the world to establish rubber plantations. The spread of rubber cultivation accelerated primarily due to the colonial expansion and growing needs resulting from the massive industrialization in the late 18th century. First commercial rubber plantation in India was established at Thattekadu, Kerala in 1902 by the British planters. Since then, the total area of rubber cultivation has been increased steadily and resulted in contributing significantly towards the region's economic growth. Today, India is the fourth largest producer of the natural rubber in the world after Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam. The country has imported 4, 42, 130 metric tonnes of natural rubber in FY 2014–15 compared to 3, 60, 363 metric tonnes in FY 2013–14. However, India has exported only 1002 metric tonnes of natural rubber in FY 2014–15 compared to 5398 metric tonnes of FY 2013–14. Though the total consumption of natural rubber increased due to the demand requirements, our exports are showing a steady decline for the past several years. Kerala, occupying only 1.2% of total area and 2.5% of total population, is the largest producer of natural rubber in India by contributing 94% of total output. It was because of the adaptation of modern technologies, agricultural tools and practises and botanical research and development along with its suitable climate, Kerala was able to achieve this marvellous position. In the above circumstances, the objective of this study is to make an overall examination of the progress made in the cultivation and production of natural rubber in India over the course of time.
Foreign Trade, Kerala, India, Natural Rubber.