China’s corn imports may reach a record high of around 7.4 million tons in 2011, five times the expected volume of imports this year, the US Grains Council said. This came after Rabobank tipped that China, already the world’s biggest grain user, may overtake Japan as the largest corn importer within five years, buying up to 25 million tons a year by 2015, Bloomberg reported. The country’s domestic grain output is expected to reach 172.5 million tons in 2010, up 5.2% year-on-year. Thomas Dorr, president of the US Grains Council, said China is "aggressively" trying to add Argentina to its alternative suppliers, boosting competition for US exporters. At the same time, Dorr noted that Beijing is unlikely to want corn imports to rise to the extent they have in the soybean industry. Soybean imports have surged fivefold in the last 10 years and now 80% of Chinese demand is met by external sources.
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