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(Adds details from report)
NEW YORK, May 7 (Reuters) - Chinese sugar output is expected to rise less than 1 percent to 10.7 million tonnes in 2019/20, as low prices and limited land availability slow production growth, according to a U.S Department of Agriculture attache report published on Tuesday.
The small growth in production is driven by increased beet output, especially out of Inner Mongolia, the top beet-producing province, the attache in Guangzhou said. Overall beet sugar production in the country is forecast at 1.5 million tonnes, compared with 1.4 million tonnes last year.
Cane sugar production is expected to remain steady at 9.3 million tonnes as the area dedicated to sugarcane cultivation expands in the top-growing province Guangxi but contracts in Guangdong and Hainan provinces, the report said.
The increase in Guangxi is attributed to supportive measures from the provincial government, including the high prices at which mills are mandated to buy from farmers. Mills, however, complain that they are losing money and are petitioning for market-based pricing and subsidies for farmers, the attache said.
The USDA attache expects imports to remain steady at 4.3 million tonnes, as the rise in official imports so far this year is offset by a decrease in smuggling, the report said, citing industry.
Ending stocks for 2019/20 are projected at 4.5 million tonnes, down almost 1 million tonnes year on year.
"Stocks are expected to continue to fall as industry contacts believe national reserves will be released to fill the gap between domestic consumption and production," the report said.
To read the full report, click: https://bit.ly/2Vaj672 (Reporting by Ayenat Mersie Editing by Marguerita Choy)