MUMBAI, June 7 (Bernama) — The private sectors in Malaysia and India should redefine the business approach in the industry by forming partnerships and strategic alliances to discover new avenues to expand the edible oil and palm oil businesses.
In making the call, Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities, Tan Sri Bernard Dompok, said there were opportunities to explore investments in downstream higher value-added palm derivatives.
“Oleochemicals, pharmaceuticals, processed foods, specialty products and even consumer brands are some of the value-added palm derivatives,” he said in his opening speech at the Malaysia-India Palm Oil Trade Fair & Seminar 2012 (POTS 2012) here today.
These efforts, he said, would definitely spur the growth of India’s oils and fats industries and further enhance trade between the two countries.
Also present were Malaysian High Commissioner to India, Datuk Tan Seng Sung, Malaysian Palm Oil Council chairman, Datuk Lee Yeow Chor, Malaysian Palm Oil Board director-general, Datuk Choo Yuen May and Malaysian Palm Oil Council chief executive officer, Tan Sri Datuk Dr Yusof Basiron.
Dompok said it was the Indian industrialists that contributed to the development of the Malaysian palm oil industry, particularly in the palm oil refining sector.
Indian companies such as Tata, Birla and Allana Groups pioneered the establishment of palm oil refineries in Malaysia in the 1970s and 1980s, he said.
“This is a pointer to this POTS 2012 that we should also explore new areas for further cooperation and to rejuvenate our business linkages and cooperation, so as to ensure continuous progress of the bilateral trade and between our countries,” he said.
Palm oil plays a significant role in the trade structure between the two countries. Malaysia exported over 1.82 million tonnes of palm oil products to India in 2011, valued at RM6.03 billion.
It is also the largest vegetable oil produced in the world since 2006, beating soyabean oil.
Palm oil production accounted for 50.23 million tonnes, or 28 per cent, of the total oils and fats output of 179 million tonnes in 2011.
In terms of global export trade of about 68.85 million tonnes of edible oils, palm oil accounted for 38.88 million tonnes, or 56.64 per cent, of total oils and fats exports in 2011.
Malaysia alone produced 18.91 million tonnes, or 37.65 per cent, of total palm oil production in 2011 and exported 17.99 million tonnes, or 46.27 per cent of world palm oil exports.
This is equivalent to about 26.6 per cent of the global oils and fats trade.
By Saraswathi Muniappan
Source : BERNAMA