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Zero Hunger Is Unlikely to Be Achieved by 2030, UN Says — Commodities Roundup

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–Brent crude oil rose 1.2% to $115.15 a barrel.

–European natural gas prices rose 7.9% to EUR139.35 a megawatt hour.

–Copper prices in London rise 1% to $8,485 a metric ton.

–Gold edges up 0.3% to $1,825 a troy ounce.

TOP STORY:

Zero Hunger Is Unlikely to Be Achieved by 2030, UN and OECD Say

The goal of removing world hunger is unlikely to be achieved by 2030, despite improvements in crop yields and agricultural practices, according to a new report on Wednesday from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Food output and farming practices are likely to improve agricultural productivity over the next decade, but at the moment these improvements are unlikely to reduce emissions from agriculture or achieve zero hunger by 2030.

OTHER STORIES:

Rice Is Saving Asia as Ukraine War Drives Up Food Prices

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has driven up food prices around the world, but the situation is less grim in Asia. Thank rice.

Following successive bumper crops, rice has emerged as a rare food commodity that has generally been cheaper this year than it was last year. That’s great news for the billions of people who live across the swath of Asia where the grain is a popular staple, from India to Thailand, Vietnam and Japan. The region encompassing South, Southeast and East Asia produces and consumes more than 80% of the world’s rice, according to data from the U.S. Agriculture department.

Anglo American’s Subsidiary Extends Diamond Sale Deal in Botswana

Anglo American PLC’s subsidiary De Beers Group said on Wednesday that it has extended its agreement with the government of Botswana on the sale of Debswana’s rough-diamond production.

Shell Faces Further Industrial Action in Australia

Shell PLC is facing further industrial action in Australia after the country’s CEPU union set out additional work bans at the Prelude FLNG facility.

The work bans, which will begin on July 1, come in addition to the 29 already in effect between June 10 and July 14. The additional action will affect activities relating to the mooring of tankers or vessels, helicopter transportation, work permits for contractors, and the restarting of steam turbine generators.

MARKET TALKS:

European Natural Gas Prices Jump on Reports of U.K. Emergency Plan — Market TalkPalm Oil Ends Lower as Supply-Demand Outlook Turns Less Favorable

1150 GMT – European gas prices jump after reports that the U.K. is considering a plan that would cut off gas supplies to mainland Europe in the event of a severe shortage. Benchmark European natural gas futures jump 6.8% to EUR138 a megawatt-hour while U.K. gas prices jump 11% to GBP1.85 a therm. The plan by the U.K.’s National Grid would see pipelines that allow supplies to flow between Britain and the Netherlands and Belgium shut off if the energy crisis worsens. The plan would help the U.K. keep gas supplies, including imported LNG, in Britain. However, it would also mean it couldn’t import gas supplies from continental Europe during high-demand winter months. (william.horner@wsj.com)

1106 GMT – Palm oil prices ended lower in Asia, resuming a downturn in June amid easing concerns about a supply shortage, which earlier this year sent prices of the edible oil to record highs. Fitch Ratings analysts have pointed to the prospect of further output increases in the coming months, which would weigh on palm oil futures. Indonesia’s recent move to approve more exports of the commodity soothed supply concerns further and damped buying interest in the edible oil. The benchmark Bursa Malaysia Derivatives contract for September delivery fell MYR86 to MYR4,903 a ton. (yifan.wang@wsj.com)

Gold Continues to Fetch Above $1,800/oz on Long-Term Interest, UBS Says

0959 GMT – Gold prices have struggled to push past $1,850 a troy ounce in recent days, but long-term interest is helping to keep the precious metal above $1,800 an ounce, according to analysts at UBS. “On the one hand, monetary policy tightening and rising global rates ultimately create headwinds, as the opportunity cost of holding gold increases. But on the other hand, diversification interest remains intact as fears of a recession rise,” UBS strategist Joni Teves says in a note. Teves added that interest from long-term players is key in supporting gold prices and that “this type of buying does not tend to chase the market higher, but its long-term nature makes the market more resilient.” Futures in New York are hovering at $1,817 an ounce currently. (yusuf.khan@wsj.com)

Oil Edges Up on Saudi Arabia, UAE Supply Concerns

0826 GMT – Oil prices edge higher, erasing earlier session losses, as concerns build over the ability of OPEC producers to increase supply. Brent crude oil edges up 0.1% to $113.96 a barrel. WTI gains 0.1% to $111.84 a barrel. OPEC members, particularly leading producers Saudi Arabia and the U.A.E., are being seen as increasingly unlikely to be able to increase supply to compensate for lost Russian barrels. “The market’s perception that OPEC+ is struggling to meet existing supply commitments, and even more so to expand supply is supporting prices,” Tobin Gorey at CBA says. The cartel’s technical committee meets later today ahead of a full ministerial meeting Thursday. (william.horner@wsj.com)

Metals Slide on Downbeat Consumer Confidence

0721 GMT – Metals markets are sliding in early trading with sentiment hampered by a lack of optimism from consumers in the economy. Three-month copper prices are down 1% to $8,319.50 a metric ton while aluminum is down 0.6% to $2,473 a ton. Gold is also slipping 0.1% in New York to $1,818.70 a troy ounce. Data on Tuesday showed that consumers’ short-term outlook for the U.S. economy fell to its lowest point in nearly a decade. “Inflation worries continue to be propagated around,” Marex’s Asian metals team says in a note. “[…] the West [is] just seemingly not that convinced that a global recession can be avoided altogether.” A rate hike from the European Central Bank is likely, it says. (yusuf.khan@wsj.com)

Energy Crisis Could Speed Up Miners’ Transitions

0438 GMT – Higher diesel and electricity costs on Australia’s east coast are pressuring a number of energy-intensive mining operations and could push some companies to accelerate their energy-transition plans, Macquarie analysts say in a note. Rio Tinto earlier this month called for proposals to develop large-scale wind and solar power in Queensland state, where it runs aluminum assets, the analysts note. They also highlight other recent renewable-power supply deals, including one at BHP’s Olympic Dam copper operation in southern Australia, which is due to begin next month. (rhiannon.hoyle@wsj.com; @RhiannonHoyle)

Write to Will Horner at william.horner@wsj.com

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