The evolution of the market from 1979 to 2000. From 1979 prices started a slight upward trend until 1980, when they reached 41-42 dollars per metric ton fob The global economic context at the end of the 70s was characterized by the second oil shock (1979). ) and the increase in macroeconomic imbalances of the main importing countries, especially in Western Europe. This situation was further aggravated by the rise in dollar prices from 1980 to 1984. This resulted in higher phosphate production costs and lower imports
due to the imbalance in the trade balance of the major importers. In addition, the good harvests recorded worldwide and the embargo on agricultural exports to the USSR have had a negative impact on the phosphate market. The result was an increase in the stocks of agricultural products leading to a downward trend in agricultural prices. In the US, declining farm incomes and the setting aside of cropland to support agricultural commodity prices have exacerbated phosphate supply-demand imbalances. This situation has been aggravated by the rising prices of sulfur. which is a complement to phosphorus in the manufacture of phosphate fertilizers. Indeed, any rise in the price of sulfur is reflected in that of phosphate fertilizers, with a negative effect on the demand of the latter and therefore on that of crude phosphate. But the weakness of phosphate prices in the early 1980s can be explained by the high level of world production. Indeed, the decline in production of the two market leaders has been mitigated by the start of production of new farms in China, Jordan, Iraq, Syria, Brazil and Tunisia. Despite a decline of around 20 million tonnes in the output of the two leaders, world production fell by only 17 million tonnes. And supply remained relatively higher than demand. This state of the market in conjunction with the critical financial situation of the fertilizer industries and the high dollar has led to a decline in phosphate prices: world prices have risen from $ 46 in 1980 to $ 33 in 1985 and $ 31. per ton in 1987. Starting in 1988, prices will rise again because of the contraction in American stocks that began two years ago, a contraction combined with a rise in world demand of 4%. They reach $ 42 in 1991/92. But by the end of 1992, the price decline would resume.