KARACHI - The fertilizer off-take has increased by 10 per cent in two months of calendar year 2009, The Nation learnt on Friday. According to the latest fertilizer data released by the National Fertilizer Development Centre (NFDC), the fertilizer off-take stood at 1,150k tons in two months (Jan-Feb) 2009 against 974k tons of same period of last calendar year 2008 which showed 10 per cent increase. Analysts attributed this increase with a sharp rise in both urea and DAP sales during the January and February months of this calendar year 2009. According to a report compiled by research analysts, due to falling prices of DAP in the market, off-take in Feb 2009 surged by a massive 392 per cent to 70k tons in February of 2009 from just 14k tons of same month of Feb 2008. As a result, off-take during Jan-Feb 2009 rose to 114k tons (up by 61 per cent) from 71k tons of corresponding period of last calendar year 2008. The analysts said that the current DAP prices were at levels similar to last year, while increase in off-take was largely due to higher crop support prices. According to research report, the similar increasing trend was observed in urea sales as alone in Feb 2009 the off-take was recorded at 476k tons up by 2 per cent against the sale of last year. Moreover, cumulative off-take during two months (January-February 2009) was also up by 10 per cent over the off-take of same period of last year 2008 as volumes stood at 1,075k tons during above mentioned two months of current year against 974 kilo tons of corresponding period of last year. Analysts hoped that the DAP sales would continue their upward momentum in March-09, following urea price hikes of Rs30/bag. During the first three weeks of March-09, average retail urea prices have increased to Rs756/bag, while DAP prices have further declined to Rs2017/bag. Meanwhile, in Calendar Year 2009, the DAP sales expected to increase by 40 per cent to 1,084k tons, while urea sales are also expected to remain unchanged at 5.5 million tons in current year 2009, an analyst said. According to data of National Fertilizer Development Centre, the company wise urea market shares for FFC, ENGRO and FFBL were recorded at 37 per cent (-8.7ppsYoY), 14 per cent(-10.3ppsYoY) and 5 per cent (-6.3bpsYoY) during Jan-Feb 2009 respectively.