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(From New Straits Times (Malaysia))
TWO words explain why rubber prices are skyrocketing: Oil and China.
Synthetic rubber, a petroleum by-product, costs more than natural rubber due to high oil prices.
And demand from developing countries, especially China's expanding automotive sector, is also driving the price of rubber upwards.
But how long will this last? "There is a possibility that we can maintain these prices in the long run, because petroleum prices are high, and the demand from the automotive sector in China is growing very strongly," says Malaysian Rubber Board director-general Kamarul Baharain Basir. Kamarul does not believe …