Last year, Pakistan surprised the sugar world with output over 6.5 mln tonnes, making the country the world’s fifth largest cane sugar producer. Production still suffers considerable year-on-year variations, but in most years over the current decade has not only consistently covered domestic demand but also brought exportable surplus. Two seasons of record output allowed Pakistan to export more than 1.6 mln tonnes in 2018, consolidating its position in the league of the world’s 10 largest exporters. A new ISO study is the first to specifically focus on Pakistan’s sugar economy with an objective to review the recent developments and drivers of the country’s sugar economy and to formulate projections of sugar production, consumption, and trade in the coming 10 years. The paper first presents a general overview of Pakistan’s market and its importance for the world sugar economy. We continue our analysis by examining the recent trends and prospects in consumption of both centrifugal and non-centrifugal sugars as well as providing indicative projections for consumption growth till the second half of the next decade. The third part of the study is dedicated to discussing production trends and prospects as well as focusing on the regulatory environment for cane growing and processing. The next part contains an analysis of revenue diversification in the sugar sector through bagasse-based electricity co-generation, molasses and ethanol production and exports. Finally, recent developments in Pakistan’s sugar trade are analysed and forecasts are made as to whether the country will become a permanent and sustainable source of sugar supply to the world market over the medium to longer term. Pakistan has demonstrated an ability of executing large-scale exports and competing successfully in the markets in South-East Asia, Central Asia, the MENA region as well as East Africa. However, the country is not expected to become a permanent and sustainable source of sugar supply to the world market over the medium to longer term, on top of the traditional border trade with Afghanistan.
Introduction I. Pakistan – Recent Changes in its Position on the World Sugar Map II. Sweetener Demand in Pakistan General Situation Box 1 Gur production and consumption – recent trends and perspectives Sugar Consumption Outlook III. Sugar Production General Overview Box 2 Beet Sugar Production in Pakistan Cane Cultivation Regulatory Environment Box 3 National Sugar Policy 2009-2010 Sugar Production beyond 2018/19 IV. Revenue Diversification in the Sugar Sector Bagasse-based Co-Generation Ethanol production and trade V. Sugar Exports VI. Sugar Imports Conclusions