MEXICO CITY — Mexico’s Economy Ministry on Thursday announced a refined sugar import quota of up to 393,000 tonnes to be tendered in several auctions from September through November with shipment through Dec. 31, 2009. The need for additional purchases will be assessed after each auction, the Ministry said. Imports were expected to mostly come from Central or South America. Mexico said it needed to make up for a shortfall in 2008-09 production, which has been estimated near 5 million tonnes of semi-refined standard sugar, about 500,000 tonnes below earlier projections. The announcement helped push white sugar futures to all-time highs in London and world raw sugar futures (#11) to 28-year highs in New York this week. Prices already were strong due to lower production in Brazil and a large shortfall in India, the world’s top two sugar producers.
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