Phosphate production increased by 33.8% in the last 7 months of 2017 compared to 2016, according to the latest figures of the Tunisian Ministry of Finance.
This production was 412.7 thousand tons at the end of July, against 247 thousand tons in the same period of 2016 and 334.7 thousand tons in 2015.
The increase is even more significant, 67.1% compared to the months of July of the last two years.
This increase in production, however, was not followed by an increase in sales and exports.
According to foreign trade figures for the last eight months of 2017, phosphate and derivatives mining exports decreased by 15.2% as a result of the drop in phosphoric acid exports (272.9MD vs. 405.0 MD).
This is largely due to the loss of several markets by the CPG (Gafsa Phosphates Company) because of the strikes that hit the sector.
What the figures do not also say is that in the face of this increase in production and the decline in sales, Tunisian phosphate stocks are rising very rapidly.