Friday, March 2, 2018

Palm oil trade & market news: India import tax hike against palm oil rattles traders






2 Mar 2018: India import tax hike against palm oil rattles traders

Editor's note: Here's my summary of some high-key palm oil trade issues in selected countries. The news on the India import tax hikes against palm oil hit today. The Khor Reports team has our heads down in the data and maps, but we are told "traders here freaking out over India tax hike."

18 Jan 2018: EU Parliament has voted to exclude palm oil from the EU-RED,  Brent Crude $69.38 

18 Jan 2017: EU Parliament has voted to exclude palm oil from the EU-RED. What's next? What can you do?

Bursa Malaysia crude palm oil futures fall on concerns over EU Parliament vote on RED II provisions Singapore (Platts)--17 Jan 2018

30 Dec 2017: Malaysian palm oil price sheds 20% in 2017, Brent Crude $66.87

Malaysian palm oil price sheds 20% in 2017, 30 Dec 2017  - Palm oil prices have been trending downwards since November, after India raised import taxes on edible oils to their highest in more than a decade, cutting demand.

Oil Resurrection Sets Stage for Another OPEC-Shale Clash in 2018 By Catherine Traywick , Heesu Lee , and Grant Smith December 29, 2017

20 Sep 2017: Dr James Fry presentation, China policy favours domestic ethanol, IOI de-integrates Loders Croklaan, trade tussles and the "unhealthy commodity" label, Brent Crude $55.14

Editor's note: I'm sitting in a rain-soaked and surprisingly cool Kuala Lumpur these few days - it's raining in the morning as well as the afternoon. Bad flash floods even hit Penang in northern Peninsular Malaysia. Increased pessimism on biodiesel outlook is obvious among specialists in the palm sector - with US and EU short term policy hits on imports as well as medium-longer term concerns as China affirms domestic ethanol for its biofuel (it seeks to lift rural incomes, not add to money flow leakages) and technological disruption stares the need-subsidy-forever biodiesel segment in the eye. Buyers ask when lower prices are coming, and they should keep an eye on recovery of production. More negative news is starting to build up on palm on enviro-social issues, in the widely expected cyclical news run up to the annual November RSPO meeting. The corporate surprise is the apparent de-industrialisation / de-integration of IOI Group as it sells its Loders Croklaan unit to Bunge (70% and the remainder may be sold within 5 years); and Bunge will be the buyer of half of the Malaysian group's palm oils. Southeast-Asia based analysts write of  IOI using its RM2.5 billion net gain/ RM4 billion proceeds to expand upstream (and this is expected to comply with tough sustainability - IOI has promised RSPO Next). Or maybe more real estate deals for this palm and property giant? To be sure, palm exporters are ever worried about the EU market as palm volumes there have shrunk in non-energy uses and the all-important energy sector faces up to political and policy noises. Heading to Paris-Brussels soon, so get in touch for a policy-trade views update. 

China pushes for full scale bio-fuel ethanol E10 by 2020 - but experts point to feedstock limitations; a temporary dampener on Malaysia-Indonesia hopes for China B5?

Dr James Fry, LMC International - Globoil Presentation - Sept 17

Top palm oil firms facing EU firing rethink trade strategy -
Major producers in Indonesia and Malaysia are looking at new markets ranging from Africa to Myanmar SEP 14, 2017

Bunge to buy 70 percent stake in IOI Corp unit for $946 million  SEPTEMBER 12, 2017 -- “The market is perceiving that this takes them out of the M&A risk,” said Bill Densmore, senior director of corporate ratings at Fitch Ratings, noting that the share price had been elevated this summer by expectations of a takeover. The deal’s relatively high valuation cost of more than 12 times IOI Loders’ estimated 2018 EBITDA and the increased debt from the transaction will make the Bunge a more expensive takeover target, said Farha Aslam, analyst with Stephens Inc.

Source: Maybank quoted in The Edge Malaysia 18 Sep 2017, the IOI sale of its key downstream unit is seen here as a "timely exit from the EU market given the increasing animosity against palm oil", a lesson from damage from the RSPO suspension and potential to refocus on higher return upstream business.

News wrap, July - Sep 2017

World Bank on "unhealthy commodities"

Cut subsidies for unhealthy commodities and regulate junk food marketing, says World Bank By David Burrows 17-Aug-2017
Subsidies should be re-targeted towards fruit and vegetable production rather than “unhealthy ingredients for food processing” such as sugar, corn and palm oil, the economists said. Note: unhealthy commodities defined as oils, solid fats, sugars, salt, flours, starches                     

Trade tussles - FTAs, product safety and health

Ambank wrote: Bloomberg reported that US has proposed import duties on biodiesel from Argentina and Indonesia. Initial results of a Commerce Department probe indicated that the duties should be 50.3% to 64.2% on Argentine biodiesel imports and 41.1% to 68.3% on Indonesian biodiesel imports. The Commerce Department will announce on 7 November if the duties are finalised. Separate action by the International Trade Commission will follow thereafter.

Positive response from Iran on palm oil duty cut

Malaysia - Minister: Palm oil export to Iran to grow by 40% under FTA 

Pakistan - PFA panel recommends banning banaspati ghee                   

India - Mention palm oil content on labels of food products 
Palm oil free certification scheme launched By Katy Askew 14-Aug-2017
FDA okays Bunge petition on soybean oil health claims: Food companies and restaurants may make qualified health claims linking consumption of soybean oil to reduced risk of coronary heart disease, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced July 31. The FDA decision was issued in response to a February 2016 petition from Bunge North America, St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.,the North American business Bunge Ltd. The FDA said it would allow companies to communicate that soybean oil may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease and may lower LDL-cholesterol when replacing saturated fats and not increasing caloric intake. The Bunge petition featured a summarization of human clinical trials demonstrating the heart health potential of soybean oil.

Biodiesel pessimism amidst technological disruption

The death of the internal combustion engine. It had a good run. But the end is in sight for the machine that changed the world Aug 12th 2017

Shell braces for 'lower forever' oil amid electric vehicle boom The Telegraph, July 27, 2017 -- .... On Wednesday the UK followed France’s pledge to halt the sale of internal combustion vehicles by 2040, just weeks after the world’s fastest growing economies, China and India, also called time on traditional fuel engines.... Mr Van Beurden said the “absolutely necessary” backing was welcomed by the oil group, which is already taking into account a “very aggressive scenario” in which oil use could peak in the 2030s.... The forecast tipping point is a full decade earlier than predictions from the International Energy Agency...

Britain to ban sale of all diesel and petrol cars and vans from 2040, 25 July 2017 -- The commitment, which follows a similar pledge in France, is part of the government’s much-anticipated clean air plan, which has been at the heart of a protracted high court legal battle.... The government warned that the move, which will also take in hybrid vehicles, was needed because of the unnecessary and avoidable impact that poor air quality was having on people’s health. Ministers believe it poses the largest environment risk to public health in the UK, costing up to £2.7bn in lost productivity in one recent year.

More here... Biodiesel news: The technology transition outlook (is oil the new coal?), US import duties on Musim Mas, Wilmar and others, "abject coalfields"

7 July 2017: France to ban sales of petrol and diesel cars by 2040, China Geely-Volvo shifts to all electric-hybrid from 2019, Brent $47.44

Editor's note: Maybe Malaysia could aim to export Geely-Volvo electric-hybrids instead of palm oil for biodiesel? Fascinating that the apparent trigger is from China's auto industry. On the China domestic scene, recall that Indonesia eyes China biodiesel market for its palm oil. In my recent visit to Singapore, some top business observers feel that the hey-days for oil are not likely to come back. The indicators from energy geopolitics would seem to concur with so much investment to wean off a troublesome crude oil dependencies which come with uncomfortable ethno-religious problems. As for crop-based biodiesel, some major rethinks needed. Complacent assumptions of China and India buying cheap, no questions asked, is likely misplaced.

Target/mooted bans on sales of petro-diesel cars include:

  • Norway 2025
  • Netherlands 2025
  • Germany (some states) 2030
  • India 2030
  • UK 2040 
  • France 2040

Will China Geely-Volvo's shift to all electric-hybrid trigger more EU countries to change policy on transport fuel mix to exit carbon fuel - petrol and (end scandal-ridden love affair with) diesel... France to ban sales of petrol and diesel cars by 2040 - Move by Emmanuel Macron’s government comes a day after Volvo said it would only make fully electric or hybrid cars from 2019,; and "European parliament draft inquiry into dieselgate has found EC ignored evidence of emissions test cheating" Also note that 30,000 to 40,000 new Volvo vehicles target to be railed from Volvo plant in China to Zeebrugge each year,; and China Geely taking a large stake in Malaysia's Proton (consolidating its two plants,

15 Jun 2017: Norway bans government purchasing of palm oil biofuel,  antidumping campaign from EU and the US NBB, Indonesia eyes China biodiesel market, Brent Crude $46.95

Editor's note: The EU Parliament vote also calls for an end to palm biodiesel

Norway bans government purchasing of palm oil biofuel 13 June 2017 / Morgan Erickson-Davis - The move may make Norway the world’s first country to ban palm oil in its public procurement -- The growth of the palm oil industry has been blamed for a host of damaging environmental impacts, such as deforestation and carbon emissions. Research indicates that biofuel made with palm oil may be even worse for the climate than fossil fuels. The Norwegian parliament responded to these impacts by voting in a regulation to its Public Procurement Act to stop using biofuel palm oil-based biofuel. The resolution further stipulates that the "regulatory amendment shall enter into force as soon as possible." Conservationists laud the move, but say more countries need to follow suit. They recommend the EU's biofuel policy be updated to reflect concerns about palm oil.

Indonesian biodiesel producers turn to China -- Indonesian Biofuel Producers Association (Aprobi) chairman MP Tumanggor stressed Thursday that their members could no longer rely on their exports to the US and European Union... “Our production capacity reaches 11 million kiloliters per year, 4 million of which is absorbed by the domestic market. The remaining 7 million kiloliters are idle,” he said, adding that exports to European countries and the US account for just a portion. The negative sentiment was sparked by an antidumping campaign from both the European Union and the US commercial trade association National Biodiesel Boards (NBB).... Aprobi secretary general Stanley Ma said that China was a potential market for Indonesian biodiesel because the country used B5 for its fuel, which consists of 5 percent biodiesel and 95 percent petroleum biodiesel. “China might need 9 million kiloliters of biodiesel a year. This could boost our exports,” he said. The Indonesian government is reportedly set to send a team to China on June 16 in an attempt to boost biodiesel exports to the country.

26 Apr 2017: USA trade issues - FDA culls foreign food facility registration, Trump worries about Canada lumber and dairy

FDA culls huge number of foreign food facility registrations By Hank Schultz, 25-Apr-2017 In its latest cleanup of its food facility registration database, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has culled an eye-opening 28% of existing registrations. The biggest drops happened in overseas sites.

Canada Reacts Coolly to U.S. Move on Lumber - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says trade irritants with U.S. ‘nothing new,’ can be resolved By Paul Vieira April 25, 2017 -- Trudeau said Tuesday he intended to speak firmly yet reasonably with President Donald Trump about the U.S. slapping a 20% tariff on softwood lumber from Canada and Mr. Trump’s escalating rhetoric over Canadian dairy trade practices.

Trump slaps first tariffs on Canadian lumber by Patrick Gillespie   @CNNMoney April 25, 2017 -- The Trump administration is hitting Canada with stiff tariffs of up to 24% on lumber shipped into the United States..... Trump's tariffs come as the U.S., Canada and Mexico prepare to renegotiate NAFTA, the 1994 free trade agreement. Trump has directed almost all of his NAFTA criticism at Mexico, which makes this decision even more surprising.

Why's Trump threatening Canada over milk? President Trump has slapped tariffs on Canadian lumber - now he's going after their dairy farmers. Why?

25 Apr 2017: Reuters - traders eye Ramadan demand, pick up from 8 month low, more clampdown in China's shadow finance system, Brent Crude $51.83

China’s shadow finance system -  turbulence has centered on so-called entrusted investments -- funds that Chinese banks farm out to external asset managers....banks’ withdrawals helped erase $183 billion of stock market value last week and sent bond yields to the highest level in nearly two years

VEGOILS-Palm sees second day of gains, traders eye Ramadan demand - Reuters News 21-Apr-2017 06:41:35 PM  *   Palm hits intraday high of 2,535 rgt/T, strongest in a week  *   Market also up on technical correction - Trader

VEGOILS-Malaysian palm hits 8-month low as rival oils weaken - Reuters News 19-Apr-2017 06:57:48 PM  *   Palm down nearly 7 percent since start of April *   Expectations of rising output, weaker demand - trader

13 Apr 2017: Palm trades at 6-month lows, BMD RM2,589/$585

VEGOILS-Palm trades at 6-month lows on stronger output, weaker overnight soy - Reuters News 12-Apr-2017 06:42:37 PM  By Emily Chow *   Palm fell to six-month low of 2,568 rgt/T  *   Market sees fourth decline in five sessions

3 Apr 2017:  Malaysian palm oil price falls to 5-mth low, US and EU biodiesel dumping claims on  Indonesia (and overall commodity exports sector shrinking), MEPs to Vote on Sustainable Palm Oil Report, BMD RM2,646/$598

Malaysian palm oil price loses gains, falls to 5-mth low 1 April 2017  Read more at

Palm oil producers revise up palm oil production, stock data, Stefani Ribka, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | March 28, 2017 -- GAPKI predicts that the CPO price will hover around US$720 to $750 per ton in this month end after reaching $722.5 to $765 per ton during the first two weeks of this month.

New biodiesel dumping claim weighs on RI’s shoulders by Viriya P. Singgih, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Sat, March 25, 2017 - As though adding insult to injury, American biodiesel producers have followed the European Union’s (EU) lead in accusing Indonesia of dumping practices, less than a week before the latter’s first meeting to clear its name with the WTO. The United States-based commercial trade association National Biodiesel Board (NBB), along with dozens of its fellow biodiesel producers, filed a petition on Thursday with the US Department of Commerce and the US International Trade Commission to impose anti-dumping and countervailing duties on imports of biodiesel from Argentina and Indonesia.

EDITORIAL: EU policy unjustifiable, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Fri, March 24, 2017 -- We find it mind-boggling trying to understand the European Union’s stubborn policy to maintain the 2013 anti-dumping duties on the importation of Indonesian biodiesel, despite a court ruling last year that annulled the duties. The court ruled last September that Indonesian domestic palm oil prices were not regulated...

MEPs to Vote on Sustainable Palm Oil Report, 03 Apr 2017 --- MEPs will debate a report calling on the European Commission to take measures to phase out palm oil in biofuels and a single certification scheme for the commodity to enter the EU market, later today (April 3), ahead of a vote scheduled for tomorrow.

Malaysia grateful to France for rejecting ‘unfair’ palm oil tax 29 March 2017 -- Read more at

Indonesia, France talk about palm oil and aircraft industry by Anton Hermansyah, The Jakarta Post, March 29, 2017,

Tasmanian dairy uses palm oil spin-off in its cow feed - The Australian, April 3, 2017 -- Chief executive David Beca stressed that the product — which is linked to deforestation in Southeast Asia, including of orangutan habitats, as well as to biosecurity breaches and altered fat levels in milk — had certification by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil. “(It is) the highest ethical and environmental standard accepted in Europe,” Mr Beca said. “PKE is a feed source of high protein and energy, which is safe to feed to milking cows, dry stock and young calves.”

Snake eats human in Sulawesi, under pressure of deforestation: Expert by Andi Hajramurni, The Jakarta Post, Makassar | Wed, March 29, 2017 -- According to Rahmansyah, the forest was the python’s natural habitat but had continued to expand into a palm oil plantation. “It’s becoming more difficult for the animals to find their natural food,” he said....

Environmental Damage, Social Conflicts Overshadow Future of Indonesia's Palm Oil Sector By : Ratri M. Siniwi & Muhamad Al Azhari | March 21, 2017 -- Palm oil is an important commodity for Indonesia's economy, contributing $17.8 billion, or about 12 percent, to its export revenue. While this year the production of crude palm oil is likely to increase 16 percent, to up to 33 million tons, with expected conducive weather conditions, environmental issues and social conflicts continue to overshadow the sector's future in the world's biggest palm-oil producing country.

Gov't Encourages Palm Oil Farmers to Grow Corn -- Only 3.7 million hectares of farmland in Indonesia is used to grow corn, according to data released by the Central Statistics Agency (BPS). In total, the country produced 19.6 million metric tons of the crop in 2015. By : Dion Bisara | March 20, 2017

Indonesia Pays Price of Protectionism as Commodity Exports Sink by David Roman March 29, 2017 -- Lower resource exports becoming drag on economic growth: DBS. Commodities’ share of GDP has halved over past five years. Commodities now account for about 40 percent of all exports, down from almost 60 percent five years ago, according to Morgan Stanley. They make up just 6 percent of gross domestic product, half as much as in 2012, as trade restrictions worsened the impact of a price rout over much of that period. Crude oil and gas output has declined to levels last seen in the early 1970s....“Indonesia is growing 5 percent -- that’s pretty good -- but it used to grow 6 percent because of commodities. To go back to 6 percent you need to have another sector that would replace it,” said Gundy Cahyadi, an economist at DBS Group Holdings Ltd. in Singapore. “The problem is that there is no support from manufacturing.”....

372 settlers lose suit against Felda over palm oil extraction rates, 31 March 2017, BY MAIZATUL NAZLINA  -- PUTRAJAYA: A total of 372 settlers in two Felda schemes who filed a suit against the authority and its subsidiary over palm oil extraction rates will have to pay RM472,000 in costs after losing their case in two courts. On June 27, 2015, then Seremban High Court judge Justice Zabariah Mohd Yusof directed the settlers to pay RM1,000 each to Felda and Felda Palm Industries Sdn Bhd.... Court of Appeal judge Justice Abang Iskandar Abang Hashim ordered the settlers from the Serting Hilir and Raja Alias schemes in Negri Sembilan to pay a "global sum" of RM100,000 in cost to the two defendants. The court granted the cost after Felda and Felda Palm Industries counsel Mohd Hafarizam Harun submitted that various complex issues were rebutted and voluminous documents tendered in the three-day hearing.... Counsel for the settlers R. Sivarasa asked for RM10,000 in cost, saying that there were occasions when the court only sat for a half a day to hear the matter. Read more at

18 Mar 2017: El Nino 2017 question, Indonesia questions inequality of land ownership, Malaysia criticises EU Parliament resolution on palm oil, more labels in Europe, BPDP issues, BMD RM2804

Malaysian palm oil price rebounds on stronger demand forecasts 18 March 2017 Read more at

Weak El Nino to Have Small Impact on Asian Crops This Year: MDA Weather By : Naveen Thukral | March 15, 2017

Global palm oil output likely to rise by 6 million tonnes 8 March 2017, Read more at

Malaysia strongly opposes EU parliament resolution on palm oil 15 March 2017 Read more at

Six industry giants to launch UK-style traffic light labels in Europe By Niamh Michail+, 08-Mar-2017 -- Coca-Cola, Mars, Mondelez, Nestlé, PepsiCo and Unilever will add nutrition logos modelled on the UK’s traffic light label to their European portfolios. However, critics have slammed the use of portion size as a reference.

DARMIN NASUTION, MENTERI KOORDINATOR BIDANG PEREKONOMIAN - BPDP Jangan Hanya Jadi Kasir, Untuk program biodiesel, hasilnya relatif bagus. Tapi program yang lain, peremajaan kebun sawit rakyat praktis tidak ada hasil.  7/3/2017, Industri Opini
Note: For the biodiesel program, the results are relatively good. But for other programs, such as rejuvenating smallholder oil palm, there are practically no results.

EDITORIAL: Inequality in asset ownership, The Jakarta Post March 16, 2017 -- The Agrarian and Spatial Planning Ministry has set itself a target of granting 5 million land titles this year at a cost of Rp 2 trillion (US$148 million), which will be fully financed by the state budget. Land titles will empower the poor to take maximum benefit from their physical assets, such access to bank loans. Usually, registering a property can be an arduous and costly procedure. Ministry data shows that of the 136 million plots of private land across the country, only 46 million plots have legal titles... Encouraged by the smooth implementation of a land reform pilot project last year, the ministry will also speed up the redistribution of neglected land, estimated at 12.7 million hectares across the country, to landless people around forests through local customary communities.,,Many plantation companies hold land concessions of more than 500,000 ha, or more than six times the land area of Singapore. We are afraid that if the expansion of plantations, especially oil palm, by big companies remains at its current rate of more than 100,000 ha per year, mounting problems of inequality of income, wealth and land conflicts could threaten the long-term sustainability of the plantation industry, even the macroeconomic stability.

National park fights back against illegal plantations, Apriadi Gunawan, The Jakarta Post March 11, 2017 -- More than 2,000 hectares within the National Park had been converted into plantations, which were mostly spread throughout Langkat, North Sumatra and Southeast Aceh. The forest conversions were mostly committed by local people who were supported by payments from outside investors. “Most of the investors come from Medan,” Joko said...

11 Mar 2017: EU politicians question palm oil usage in biofuels and seek single certification scheme, price outlook, output to surge

On 9 Mar, European politicians backed (56 to 1) a non-binding report on sustainable palm oil (to be put to full House vote in April for phase-out from biofuel usage of deforestation producst by 2020 and a single certification scheme)... -- In her report  Konečná  calls on the European Commission to strengthen environmental measures to prevent palm oil-related deforestation and phase out the use of palm oil as a component of biodiesel by 2020. Products should also be able to be certified for the socially responsible origin of their palm oil. “I believe that the European Parliament should be very ambitious," she said. "There should not be any palm oil in biofuels." The environment committee votes on the report on 9 March. It will then be up to all MEPs to vote on it during an upcoming plenary session.

Mistry sees CPO at RM3,000 BY P. ARUNA, 9 March 2017 - Price level based on likelihood of another El Nino, Read more at

Trump and a possible El Nino may confound palm oil market bears 6 March 2017 | Read more at

CPO output expected to surge this year BY P. ARUNA 11 March 2017

Malaysia, Indonesia Biodiesel Production Forecast to Rise in 2017 By : Emily Chow | March 07, 2017

Free Trade Push: Australia, Indonesia Eye Deal - After a summit meeting, Australia and Indonesia’s leader pledge to complete a bilateral deal by the end of 2017. By Anthony Fensom February 27, 2017

Australian leader to continue free-trade talks in Indonesia  by Rod McGuirk Associated Press Canberra | Mon, March 6, 2017

27 Feb 2017: Indonesia's EU-targeted palm legality scheme and 83-90% "undisturbed natural habitat" for Papua, Malaysia announces mandatory MSPO (end 2018-end 2019) for sustainable and safe palm oil 

Editor's note: With EU market access concerns, Malaysia moves belatedly on mandatory national sustainability certification for its palm oil; a food safety element appears in news reports and we are not sure what upgrades will feature in MSPO to tackle the 3MCPD/GE issues. Indonesia's mandatory ISPO scheme has already existed for several years and has reached the stage of upgrade; Indonesia is also moving (from a perceived laggard position) on a palm legality scheme, high-grade conservation for Papua and peatland restoration.

Malaysian palm oil price recovers on better demand, but sees 2nd weekly fall 5 February 2017  -

Ministry sets timeline for MPSO certification mandatory compliance February 24, 2017 -- Its Minister Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong said the compliance would be implemented in stages with plantation players that were certified with Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) to comply with the MSPO certification by Dec 31, 2018. Those without RSPO certification would need to comply by June 30, 2019 and all smallholders by Dec 31, 2019, he said...

Working to improve the palm oil industry 26 February 2017 - On Friday, Mah told reporters that by the end of 2019, it would be mandatory for local companies to comply with the Malaysian Sus­tainable Palm Oil (MSPO) certification scheme, which requires oil palm growers and palm oil processors to meet certain sustainability standards. This is a move towards branding Malaysian palm oil as sustainably produced and safe.

Indonesia ups efforts to gain EU recognition for palm oil by Hans Nicholas Jong February 23, 2017 -- The government planned to develop a palm oil legality scheme, similar to its domestic timber legality system (SVLK) implemented in 2013, which has gained recognition as the world’s only timber legality scheme acknowledged by the EU. The legality scheme for palm oil is expected to improve the reputation of the country’s palm oil industry, Environment and Forestry Minister Siti Nurbaya Bakar said.... “Because the palm oil industry is constantly protested internationally for allegedly creating problems, we have to find instruments that are internationally accepted,” she said on Wednesday.

DRAMATIC CONSERVATION PLEDGE BY PAPUA, INDONESIA February 23, 2017 /Bill Laurance -- The 83 percent figure for conservation—which could reach as high as 90 percent—follows from a government plan that maps future development in the province....“This is a remarkable milestone—one that should echo around the world,” said Judith Dipodiputro, coordinator of Project Papua, an initiative of Indonesian President Joko Widodo that is promoting sustainable development in the region...

COMMENTARY: Who will benefit from Jokowi's land reform? Adisti Sukma Sawitri February 21, 2017

20 Feb 2017: Brazil and India news

Plantation Sector: Newsflow for week 13-17 February by AmBank research includes:

  • reported that Brazil is gearing up its infrastructure to take over USA's soybean market share following USA's withdrawal from the TPPA and potential renegotiation of the NAFTA. Work is forging ahead on a series of projects to re-route Brazil's soybean exports through the Amazon instead of travelling overland to the southern ports. This is expected to reduce transport costs by half. Currently, most of Brazil's soybean exports travel from the country's soy belt by road to ports in the south of the country. 
  • Solvent Extractors Association of India said that the country's palm oil imports fell by 11.6% MoM in January 2017. India's palm imports declined in January 2017 as there was sufficient supply of oilseeds from local farmers. Also, the currency crunch resulting from the demonetisation has slowed purchases by customers. Palm oil accounted for 64% of India's total vegetable oil imports in January 2017. 

19 Feb 2017:  Malaysian palm oil price hits 3-month low on rising output, slow export demand, delay in BPDP subsidy, Indonesia sales and exports up on commodity price rebound, BMD  RM2,859 / $642

Malaysian palm oil price hits 3-month low on rising output, slow export demand 8 February 2017 Read more at

MPSO certification compliance timeline to be announced soon BY PARVIN RAJ MOHAN 17 February 2017

Pembayaran Subsidi Biodiesel Tertunda QAYUUM AMRI Feb 17, 2017

Note: When contacted by the editorial Sawit Indonesia, the BPDP-KS represented Edi Prabowo admitted biodiesel subsidy payment is delayed. "Payment of biodiesel subsidies is delayed because there are new billing requirements document completed in January and February," said Edi Wibowo, Director of Disbursement BPDP-KS via WhatsApp messaging services, on Thursday (16/2).

Motorcycle Sales Rise in January, Manufacturers Confident of a Rebound --  Domestic motorcycle sales rose 14 percent in January from the same month last year, boosted by demand from islands outside Java, where household income was on the rise thanks to recovery in global commodities price and government infrastructure spending. The manufacturers under Indonesian Motorcycle Industry Association (AISI) sold 473,879 motorcycles last month, compared to 416,263 in the same month a year ago, the association's data showed. "When the price of commodities, such as crude palm oil rises, farmers income would also increase and encourage them to buy motorcycles," Gunadi Sindhuwinata, AISI chairman, said on Thursday (09/02).

Indonesia Jan Exports Surge More Than Expected on Rising Commodity Prices

Three named suspects for feasting on orangutan in Kapuas | Sat, February 18, 2017 -- Kapuas Police chief Sr. Comr. Jukiman Situmorang said on Friday that after 10 people had been taken in for questioning on Tuesday, investigators had decided to name three plantation workers, identified by their initials AY, 30, EMS, 39 and ER, 23, suspects. The case is believed to have occurred at an oil palm concession owned by PT Susantri Permai,... in Tumbang Puroh village, on Jan. 28. The incident reportedly began when a worker was harvesting fruit before encountering and being chased by an agitated orangutan. The worker later told the story to AY who then went out to hunt down the animal, where he purportedly killed it with an air rifle and machete. The animal was then taken by AY and his two colleagues EMS and ER to a nearby camp to be dined on...

17 Feb 2017: Malaysia palm oil exports to hit RM70bil target, Sime IPO this year?

Palm oil exports to hit RM70bil target, futures prices trading higher BY OOI TEE CHING - 16 FEBRUARY 2017  Read More :

Sime IPOs this year? BY YVONNE TAN 16 February 2017 Read more at

How palm oil intake may cause cancer Author: Wale Akinola UPDATED: 2 DAYS AGO -- Editor’s note: Red palm oil has come into the spotlight as a nutrient-rich staple food following numerous health researches that were able to establish the profound medical value of the oil. But recent researches have revealed that palm oil intake may cause cancer. In this piece, reviews the importance of red palm oil vis-à-vis its propensity of causing cancer so that people could know the best way to use it.

10 Feb 2017: Looking for output jumps, Indonesia exports and biodiesel view, GAPKI - university tie-ups, Malaysia talks up China ties, Thailand policy view

Palm Oil Could Drop to 2,500 Ringgit as Output Jumps: Analyst Fry - Malaysian palm oil prices could fall by about a fifth to 2,500 ringgit per tonne by third quarter of 2017 as production in top two producing countries is expected to rise, analyst James Fry said on Friday (03/02). By : Mayank Bhardwaj | on 3:00 AM February 04, 2017

Powerful lobby sought to ease Indonesia palm oil exports by Stefani Ribka The Jakarta Post Jakarta | Fri, February 3, 2017 -- With the absence of a special lobby group to promote their collective interests overseas, local crude palm oil (CPO) producers have set a moderate growth target for the commodity’s export this year. The Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association (Gapki) expects to increase exports by 7.56 percent to 27 million tons this year from 25.1 million tons in 2016, while production will likely increase by 12 percent to 38.7 million tons in the world’s biggest producer of the commodity. Exports in 2016 dropped 5 percent from 25.1 million tons in 2015, which the association mainly attributed to the absence of special trade deals and a special body to intensify marketing efforts amid competition with Malaysia, the world’s second largest CPO -producing country. Local producers have also been introduced to the government’s mandatory biodiesel mix policy, in which CPO is used as a mix in biodiesel in  the local market. “Exports in 2016 dropped slightly due to various factors, but we expect it to be temporary. We set a sober target for exports this year as we expect challenges to remain more or less the same,” GAPKI secretary-general Togar Sitanggang said at a press conference on Tuesday.

Biodiesel on high demand as Indonesia turns to cleaner fuel by Viriya P. Singgih The Jakarta Post Jakarta | Sat, February 4, 2017 -- Indonesia started implementing the B20 policy in early 2016 for the transportation and industry sectors, while power plant sectors were obliged to blend 30 percent of biodiesel ( B30 ) at the same time. In November, the government began stipulating the implementation of the program to all gas stations in the country, including state-owned and private stations. Otherwise, each station would be charged Rp 6,000 (45 US cents) for each liter of non-blended diesel fuel sold. As a result, Indonesia was able to consume 2.7 million kiloliters of biodiesel domestically throughout the year, 91 percent of which was blended with subsidized diesel fuel and the rest blended with non-subsidized fuel. The figure fell slightly from the original target of 2.9 million kiloliters.

Bayu Mundur, Dono Dirut Baru Badan Pengelola Dana Sawit, Apa Kata Mereka? February 8, 2017 By Indra Nugraha, dan Lusia Arumingtyas, Jakarta

Note:  Dono Boestami, former Director of PT Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) Jakarta as the new head of the BPDP.

Indonesia - Palm oil refineries may be 'clustered' to aid electricity production by Fedina S. Sundaryani The Jakarta Post Jakarta | Fri, February 3, 2017 -- The government is considering to group together palm oil refineries to make it easier to use palm oil waste to fuel power plants. Even though palm oil waste is expected to fuel a big part of the generation of 32 gigawatts (GW) of electricity that is supposed to come from renewable sources, the small size of plantations and refineries has made it difficult to procure sufficient oil from one source, said  the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry's new and renewable energy director general, Rida Mulyana. "We are currently studying the possibility of using a cluster system. So we may group six refineries in one cluster and transmit the waste to PLN together," he said during a seminar held by the Indonesian Employers Association (Apindo) on Friday. Data from the ministry shows that there is a potential to generate 12.5 GW of electricity from palm oil waste.... 

Indonesia - Palm oil association, universities team up to prepare skilled workers by Viriya P. Singgih February 2, 2017 -- The Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association (Gapki) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Indonesian Rectors Forum (FRI) on a link-and-match program to prepare skilled workers... “This year, we also want to persuade several universities, especially ones specializing in agricultural majors or located in palm oil producing regions, to collaborate with us in conducting specific research about the palm oil industry,” said Muryanto. The projected research areas include the utilization of peatland, preserving nature in oil palm plantation areas and technological innovations.  “We also want to disseminate to young generations that the palm oil industry is actually not damaging to the environment, as long as you work properly,” Muryanto added. Gapki membership currently incorporates companies working on 644 oil palm plantations across the country.....

Malaysia - Wee: Good China ties have boosted commodity prices 6 February 2017 Read more at

Malaysia overtakes Indonesia, 4 February 2017 -- TELUK INTAN: Malaysia has overtaken Indonesia as the biggest exporter of crude palm oil to China. Plantation Industries and Com­­modities Minister Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong, who disclosed this, said that Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s visit to China last November made this possible. He said Malaysia exported 993.9 thousand metric tonnes of crude palm oil to China from July to De­­cember last year. “This is a 53.6% increase over that period, while Indonesia’s export performance dropped 21%. “Six years ago we were the biggest palm oil exporters to China until Indonesia overtook us early last year,’’ he told reporters

Malaysia - Palm oil exports to India set to grow 5%-10% BY AZIZUL AHMAD 8 February 2017

Thailand - Democrats urge use of LNG, palm oil for power plants 8 Feb 2017 

26 Jan 2017: Heavy rain in many states but to ease, US withdrawal from TPP affects Malaysia palm oil export target, FGV expands jetty ops in Pakistan, BMD RM3,125/$704 

VEGOILS-Market factors to watch Jan 26 - Reuters News 26-Jan-2017 08:54:50 AM The following factors are likely to influence Malaysian palm oil futures and other vegetable oil markets. FUNDAMENTALS * Malaysian palm oil futures declined on Wednesday, tracking weaker performing rival soyoil and as traders closed positions ahead of the Lunar New Year public holidays. * U.S. soybean futures fell to a 1-1/2-week low on Wednesday on an improved South American crop weather outlook while corn edged higher on export demand, traders said. * Oil prices ended less than 1 percent lower on Wednesday after data showed a build in U.S. crude inventories, reinforcing the view that oil prices are range bound, buoyed by expected OPEC production cuts while pressured by U.S. output growth.

Heavy rain expected in all the other states, says Met Dept BY GAN PEI LING and SIMON KHOO 26 January 2017 -- Strong monsoon rains that have hit Negri Sembilan, Malacca and Johor are likely to ease by the weekend.... The high-tide phenomenon is also expected in Kuantan, Pekan and Rompin and the people are advised against going out to sea. Read more at

US withdrawal from TPP affects palm oil export target, says Mah 24 January 2017 Read more at

FGV expands jetty ops in Pakistan 25 January 2017 -- FGV’s unit in Pakistan, FWQ Enterprises Pte Ltd, is building a 30,000-tonne terminal to handle and store liquid products such as ethanol, molasses and edible oils. “The move also serves as a launch pad for FGV to enter the Balkan countries,” he said. Zakaria said FGV expected the multi-purpose tank terminal to cost RM13mil and that the first 15,000 tonnes storage tanks had been installed in June, with the remaining 15,000 tonnes would be completed in 2017. He added that the terminal tanks could increase its capacity to 38,300 tonnes to meet rising demand.... Currently, FGV owns and operates the world’s largest edible oil terminal with a total capacity of 865,000 tonnes. Once fully operational, the bulking facilities in Port Qasim, Pakistan, will complement FGV’s existing bulking facilities in Malaysia and Indonesia for a combined capacity of 900,000 tonnes... Read more at

A4042 reopened near Abergavenny after lorry crash spills palm oil - A lorry overturned and spilled palm oil which "set like wax" on the A4042 between Abergavenny and Llanellen at about 21:00 GMT on Tuesday.

21 Jan 2017: Nutella debate adds sugar concern, Ferrero refines its oil differently, Turkey to investigate products including palm oil

Products including palm oil to be investigated: Agriculture Minister Çelik, ISTANBUL January/16/2017 -- Food, Agriculture and Livestock Minister Faruk Çelik has said his office has launched work to detect food thought to include palm oil in its ingredients, state-run Anadolu Agency has reported. The ministry issued a statement on Jan. 15 after media reports on controversial palm oil, saying it was considered necessary to conduct an investigation based on public health concerns.

Deconstructed Nutella: nuts, cocoa – and 58% sugar - A photograph of its raw ingredients has shocked fans of the spread. But is it really any worse than jam or marmalade? -- Well, someone in Germany has recreated a jar showing the ingredients in layers, and you can see it’s basically half sugar. Holy moly! And about a third fat. Roly-poly holy moly! Indeed. People are often shocked to see what’s in their favourite snacks.... See! But have you ever made jam? I have not. Well, that’s got a lot of sugar in it, too: 50% in the case of Hartley’s strawberry jam; 65% in Daylesford Organic. Even Frank Cooper’s Original Oxford Marmalade is 54%. Rowse honey is 81%. Sweet spreads are mostly sugar. Just don’t eat bowls of them. How about the fat then? All right. There’s not much fat in jam. (Unless you butter your toast first.) Nutella, however, is 32% fat, most of which is palm oil. The second most evil of all the oils! ... How about the cancer risk? I heard palm oil gives you cancer. Look, high-temperature refining may lead to more potentially carcinogenic contaminants, according to the European Food Safety Authority, but it doesn’t necessarily think it’s unsafe. Besides, Ferrero says it doesn’t refine its oil that way. People want food to be simple and dramatic, when it’s a hugely complex web of … I’m bored. Yeah. That’s what I mean....

 What's in a jar of Nutella? A viral image shows the hazelnut spread is mostly sugar. By Alex Orlov  January 19, 2017 -- A viral image posted to Reddit on Sunday can give you a taste for just how much of the sweet stuff is in each jar. (The image previously appeared with ingredients listed in German when it was used in an article that published Saturday on Die Welt, a German news site. The original image was created by Verbraucherzentrale Hamburg — the consumer center of Hamburg, Germany.)

16 Jan 2017: Malaysia eyes CPO export duties, Nutella maker defends palm oil, Thailand floods

Nutella maker defends palm oil 12 January 2017

M’sia willing to talk on CPO export duties with Indonesia BY ZUNAIRA SAIEED 16 January 2017

Catastrophic Thai floods expected to worsen as death toll rises BY REUTERS - 15 JANUARY 2017

Thailand floods kill at least 25 people and causes traffic jams 125 miles long - Nearly a million people have been affected by effects of unseasonable rain  by Amy Sawitta Lefevre 10 January 2017 --More than 360,000 households, or about a million people, have been affected by the floods that have damaged homes and schools and affected rubber and palm oil production, the Department of Disaster Prevention and industry officials said.

Endless flood trauma for Malaysians (policy questions) 12 Jan 2017 by S Gopinath

5 Jan 2017: Malaysia 2016 CPO price strongest annual gain in 6 years (BMD +25%), annual flooding season,  CIMB sees RM3200 in Jan, output recovery in 2017

Editor's note: monsoon flooding of Peninsular Malaysia east coast is an annual affair. From previous year: Malaysian palm oil output may drop again in January JANUARY 14, 2015 and Malaysia's monsoon floods seen crippling December palm supply - industry Dec 26, 2014

(BFW) Malaysian Floods Hurting Some Palm Oil Plantations: KL Kepong By Anuradha Raghu (Bloomberg) -- Flooding has “severely affected” co.’s palm oil estates in Kelantan, according to Roy Lim, group plantations director at Kuala Lumpur Kepong, Malaysia’s 3rd- largest producer. * Harvesting, processing disrupted for 4th day in KL Kepong’s plantations in Kelantan and a palm oil mill has been marooned, Lim says Wednesday by phone * Typically, immediate impact of flooding to trees is loss of production, followed by quality problems * It’s still too early to tell extent of damage to production

Crude palm oil to trade up to RM3,200 in January, says CIMB Research 4 January 2017

Palm oil - will output recover in 2017, and send the rally into reverse?  3rd Jan 2017, by Mike Verdin

Malaysian palm oil price rises, closes with strongest annual gain in 6 years 31 December 2016

Indonesia's exports to still rely on primary commodities: HSBC by Winda A. Charmila, The Jakarta Post, January 3, 2017 --

Consumer pressure to ditch deforestation begins to reach Indonesia’s oil palm plantation giants - A new report by Chain Reaction Research finds that some of the Southeast Asian nation’s biggest oil palm growers have issued stronger sustainability policies in response to interventions from their buyers. Will the trend continue? By Tara MacIsaac 28 December 2016

The Chain: Dimensional Fund Advisors Divests From Some Palm Oil Positions to Mitigate Risks By GabrielThoumi on December 25, 2016

Palm Oil Divestment Goes Mainstream - World's First Broadly-Diversified "Deforestation Free" Global Equity Portfolios Now Available to Everyday Investors San Francisco - December 23, 2016 ( Newswire)

21 Dec 2016: Reuters - Palm plummets on weak external markets, lower exports, BMD RM3,093 / $690

VEGOILS-Palm plummets on weak external markets, lower exports - Reuters News 20-Dec-2016 06:48:01 PM  *   Market tracks weak related oils, expects downtrend - traders

 *   Palm erases most of the gains last week  *   Exports drop 14.4 pct for Dec. 1-20 - cargo surveyor data By Liz Lee KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 20 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures fell on Tuesday, reversing last week's gains, as rival oils fell and poor export data spooked the market.

5 Dec 2016: Friday - Palm hits four-year high before easing on weaker soyoil, BMD RM3,076/$691

VEGOILS-Palm hits four-year high before easing on weaker soyoil 02-Dec-2016 07:02:10 PM  *   Palm hits intraday high of 3,106 rgt/T  *   Market down on weak related oils, stronger ringgit - Trader  *   Signals are mixed for palm oil - Technicals  By Emily Chow KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 2 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm futures hit their highest in more than four years on Friday before easing to close in negative territory on weakness in related oils and a stronger ringgit. 

2 Dec 2016: Reuters - Palm hits one-week high tracking stronger crude oil, BMD RM3,079 / $690

VEGOILS-Palm hits one-week high tracking stronger crude oil - Reuters News 01-DEC-2016 07:04:43 PM * Palm is up on stronger crude oil, but gains seen limited - trader * Palm could see resistance at 3,093 rgt/T - technicals By Emily Chow

28 Nov 2016: Palm up on soy oil and weak Ringgit, EU leaked draft shows 2030 biofuel from food and feed crops cap at 3.8%, but US boosts biofuel quota for 2017 to record level, BMD RM3,031/$680

VEGOILS-Palm up nearly 1 pct on weaker ringgit, lower output expectations - Reuters News 25-Nov-2016 06:34:30 PM  *   Palm futures clocks fifth straight day of gains  *   Ringgit remains around 14-month low  *   Palm could rise 10 pct in Q1 2017 - Mistry By Liz Lee KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 25 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures ended nearly 1 percent higher on Friday, recording a fifth consecutive session of gains due to persistent weakness in the ringgit and falling output...The Malaysian currency fell as much as 0.18 percent to 4.453 against the dollar, almost matching the record low of 4.456 hit on Sept. 29, 2015. The ringgit has shed nearly 6 percent since Donald Trump's victory in the U.S. presidential election on Nov. 8, making it Asia's worst performing currency.

VEGOILS-Palm closes at near two-week high, tracking CBOT soyoil rally - Reuters News 24-NOV-2016 06:30:37 PM * Palm futures rose for a fourth day * Palm futures touch highest since September 2012 * Ringgit hits almost 14-month trough Updates with closing price By Fransiska Nangoy JAKARTA, Nov 24 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures rose for a fourth day on Thursday after touching a four-year high intraday, as it tracked a rally in soyoil on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) on latest U.S. government biodiesel requirements.

Biodiesel's presence in future EU policy revealed in leaked draft By Ron Kotrba | November 22, 2016

Ambank writes: According to Biodiesel Magazine, a leaked draft of annexes from the European Commission's revised Renewable Energy Directive showed that fuel produced from food or feed crops will have a reduced role in the transportation sector after year 2020. Biofuel from food and feed crops will remain capped at 7% through 2021, after which the cap will be reduced by 0.3% a year through 2025. In 2030, maximum amount of biofuel from food and feed crops will be 3.8%. Over the past couple of years, the EU government has faced pressure from anti-biofuel groups, which said that greenhouse gas emissions from biofuels are worse than those from petroleum fuels. 

US boosts biofuel quota for 2017 to record level

21 Nov 2016: Reuters - palm falls on weaker rival oils, China hedge fund and raised margins, cash crunch chokes off India buying, RM2,869 /$649.98 on 18 Nov.  

Reuters - VEGOILS-Palm falls for first session in three on weaker rival oils - Reuters News 18-Nov-2016  *   Forecasts for higher output in Indonesia weigh on mkt *   Palm down 3.5 pct this week *   Palm looks neutral in 2,823-2,891 rgt/T range - Techs

AM markets: ags fall, as China takes its turn to hurt prices 14th Nov 2016, by Mike Verdin -- As if the election of Donald Trump as president of the US wasn't enough for investors to get their heads around, the world's second biggest economy, China, is providing cause for jitters in commodity markets too.  Talk that was around late last week – of a hedge fund blowing up, and of raised margins for investors trading on Chinese commodity exchanges – remained live on Monday.

Cash crunch chokes off India palm oil imports By Reuters | Updated: Nov 18, 2016 -- India's palm oil imports are expected to slip next month by up to a fifth, including from the top two producers Indonesia and Malaysia, as New Delhi's removal of high-value rupee notes from circulation disrupts distribution systems and curbs demand.  Traders in Malaysia, India's largest palm oil supplier taking up half of its imports last year, say the absence of the large bills has already impacted sales. Indian buyers are delaying shipments and cancelling vessel space bookings, and ..

Exclusive: KL palm oil futures sentiment dampened as China curbs speculation BY OOI TEE CHING - 14 NOVEMBER 2016 -- "Today, the olein futures at the Dalian Commodity Exchange saw limit down when prices plunged by more than 5 per cent," Nandha added. Last week, it was reported that the China Securities Regulatory Commission banned futures brokers there from providing margin financing, so as to cool down the overheated financial markets. Read More :

Myth of excessive edible oil imports G CHANDRASHEKHAR November 10, 2016; Trade bodies must stop extracting State favours in the name of protecting farmers -- How valid is the assertion that ‘excessive’ quantities are being imported and whether the recommendation of a duty hike has merit?... India’s oil year runs from November to October. During the current oil year (November 2015 to October 2016), India imported 13.4 million tonne till September 2016, of which the share of palm oil (both crude and refined) was 7.7 million tonne.... While total import (covering all oils) has increased from 12.8 million tonne in the first 11 months of 2014-15 to 13.4 million tonne in the corresponding period this year, the share of palm oil has actually declined from 66 per cent in the previous year (8.4 million tonne) to 57 per cent in the current year. Palm oil has been substituted by higher import of soyabean oil....The apex body, Central Organisation for Oil Industry and Trade (COOIT), has estimated domestic production in 2015-16 at 7.2 million tonne, unchanged from the previous year.....

3 Nov 2016: Reuters - Palm rises on concerns about lower output, BMD RM2,758 / $659

Editor's note: From recent industry conference discussions, the issue of palm market share dips in China and India. Also refer to Palm Oil Analytics graphic below.

VEGOILS-Palm rises on concerns about lower output - Reuters News 02-Nov-2016 07:38:42 PM -- *Palm sees first gain after two losing sessions *Up on concerns of lower production, weaker ringgit *Government data scheduled for release on Nov. 10 By Emily Chow

Oil Falls on ‘Most Bearish Report of All Time’ Crude-oil inventory surges the most in 34 years of data, extending selloff By TIMOTHY PUKO Nov. 2, 2016 --  The supply data prompted investors to reduce expectations that two years of oversupply in the oil markets is coming to an end. U.S. prices immediately shed nearly $1 a barrel and losses spread into gasoline and diesel futures.
Note: Brent crude (ICE) $47.31.


26 Oct 2016: Palm oil futures reversed gains from the more than two-year high reached the previous day, BMD RM2,760 / $664 

VEGOILS-Palm drops on amended industry data, stronger ringgit - Reuters News 25-Oct-2016 07:19:50 PM *Palm tumbles on amended output data, lower exports *Stronger ringgit also dragged sentiment *Further market correction likely By Liz Lee -- Malaysian palm oil futures reversed gains from the more than two-year high reached the previous day, as the market reacted to revised industry data and a strengthening ringgit on Tuesday. A trader based in Kuala Lumpur noted that the market had been driven by the data received over the two days, as well as the strengthening ringgit. "The amendment to the Malaysia Palm Oil Association output data, from a 11 percent decline announced yesterday to 3.9 percent increase amended today, has significantly impacted the market. People took the numbers seriously," he said.

24 Oct 2016:  Reuters - Palm closes the week higher as low stocks hold market, BMD RM 2,724 / $651

Editor's note: The palm oil producers are mulling the EFSA process contaminants issue. It's worth reading up on it.

VEGOILS-Palm closes the week higher as low stocks hold market - Reuters News 21-Oct-2016 08:28:02 PM *Palm closes higher, as traders take position for the weekend *Prices gain for second consecutive week By Emily Chow and Liz Lee - Malaysian palm oil closed higher on Friday, reversing earlier losses, as traders squared positions ahead of the weekend and as low stock levels supported the market.  Benchmark palm oil futures for January 1FCPOc3 on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange rose 0.2 percent to 2,724 ringgit ($651.21) a tonne. They had dropped earlier to a three-week low.

Fratini Vergano Trade Prespectives Issue No. 19 of 21 October 2016: EFSA’s opinion on certain process contaminants in refined vegetable oils – explaining an oversimplified issue
....Following a request of the Commission in July 2014, the Panel on Contaminants in the Food Chain of the European Food Safety Authority (hereinafter, EFSA) delivered on 3 May 2016 a scientific opinion on the risks for human health related to the presence of the process contaminants 3- and 2-monochloropropanediol (hereinafter, MCPD), and their fatty acid esters, and glycidyl fatty acid esters (hereinafter, GE) in processed vegetable oils. Following the publication of the opinion on certain process contaminants in food, there were reports highlighting, in an oversimplified and deceptive manner, that, inter alia, palm oil causes cancer. This article aims at clarifying the real meaning of the EFSA opinion on the matter......

22 Oct 2016: Indonesia CPO export tax affirmed zero for November? Malaysia cooking oil revamp to limit abuses?

Editor's note: I got a message on Indonesia CPO export tax affirmed zero for November. See last week's story on expectation. Discussions on this issue in KL too. Also, please also note more global consumer goods manufacturers are committing to reduce saturated fats use - usually negative for their palm oil usage. See PepsiCo  news below and more here,

Indonesia likely to keep palm export tax at zero for Nov -industry   Oct 14, 2014 -- In an attempt to give the market a boost, the world's No.2 palm oil producer, Malaysia, exempted the commodity from export taxes from September until the end of December. ... Indonesia followed by slashing its monthly CPO export tax to zero for October from 9 percent in September and this is now likely to be extended into November 

What’s really cooking with edible oil? BY M. SHANMUGAM 22 October 2016 -- CONFUSION reigns in the cooking oil subsidy controversy. The initial news that came out was that the Government would cut subsidies for cooking oil, something that producers say will result in higher prices of essential items. -- Under the quota system, the subsidised price threshold is set at about RM1,900 per tonne of edible oil. What it means is that the re-packer can purchase up to the quota allocated at RM1,900 per tonne, with the rest of their requirements having to be purchased at market price....Seeing how the supply chain of cooking oil works, any adjustments to the quota system will impact the re-packers. Hence, their protest from the association and threats that the price of cooking oil will go up if there are adjustments to the quota. Based on financials, the bigger the quota, the better it is for re-packers because it ensures that the margins for a larger portion of their products are protected.... However, at the heart of the matter is whether the quota allocated to re-packers is more than what is required for domestic consumption... Has this led to some players in the industry taking advantage of the quota system to export cooking oil purchased at lower than market prices from refiners, thanks to the Government subsidy scheme? The statement from Johari seems to be hinting at that. He had said that cooking oil would continue to be subsidised and what the Government wants to do is to ensure that the subsidised oil is not exported... And of course, when the quota is adjusted downwards, the Government saves some money as the subsidy bill is lower. Nevertheless, a blanket subsidy is always bad.... Measures such as an increase in the payouts of Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia and a reduction in the personal income tax would certainly be the preferred mode instead of a subsidy system that is subject to abuse.

According to PepsiCo, at least two-thirds of the company's beverages will contain 100 calories or less per 12-ounce serving by 2025.... Also, at least three-quarters of the foods will not exceed 1.1 grams of saturated fat per 100 calories.... According to the CEO, the company also already made significant strides and is now frying snacks in many countries using "heart-healthy oil." Also, she said in China the company has available to it a new frying technique that can reduce saturated fat levels by about 20 percent while at the same time increasing capacity of the machines by 25 percent....

21 Oct 2016: MPOC POTS KL price views, Indonesia CPO Fund outlook, China clampdown on commodity trading, Colombia seeks to tie biofuels to fossil fuel prices, BMD RM 2,718 / $650 

Editor's note: At last week's MPOC POTS KL conference the triumvirate of palm price prognostication diverged in viewpoints. There was discussion of production drop due to El Nino and when production is expected to return. Worries arise on exports. Soon afterwards, news on China clamp down affecting commodity trading.

VEGOILS-Palm oil declines on slowing exports, weaker Dalian gains - Reuters News 20-Oct-2016 07:12:39 PM *Palm declines after gains in early trade *Market declines as Dalian comes off, and on weaker export data - Trader By Emily Chow

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 20 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil gave up its early gains on Thursday, declining towards the end of the trading day as rallies of rival vegetable oils on China's Dalian Commodity Exchange slowed and palm export demand weakened.

Colombia - Government freezes biofuel prices Published: 20 October 2016 10:33 AM The government has permanently fixed the price of fuel ethanol and biodiesel in Resolution 40953. From October 6 onwards the price for fuel ethanol will be COP7,832.84 ($1=2,913) per litres and for biodiesel COP9,966.02. This brings ethanol in line with gasoline. The move has caused an outcry in the industry which said that this would put the $3 bln investment in the sector at risk.

Indonesia raises 2017 biodiesel subsidy fund target on export gain - Reuters News 19-OCT-2016 02:55:37 PM By Emily Chow KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 19 (Reuters) - Indonesia has raised its target for funds collection in 2017 for its biodiesel subsidy programme by nearly 14 percent from this year on the expectation of higher palm oil exports, the head of the programme operator said on Wednesday...Krisnamurthi estimated that the target collection for the subsidy fund next year is 10.7 to 10.8 trillion rupiah ($830 million). The 2016 target is 9.5 trillion rupiah.... Indonesia started collecting a levy on its palm oil exports last July - $50 per tonne for crude palm oil and $30 for processed palm oil products - and uses part of it to help fund its biodiesel subsidies.

China's risk clamp down hits commodity trades, niche broker business 17-OCT-2016 07:00:49 AM

• China asset management regulator tightens rules on risk • Aimed at asset managers of financial firms, futures brokers • Prompts slump in structured product sales by brokers • In turn, sales slump hits commodities futures volumes • By Ruby Lian and Engen Tham 

At MPOC POTS KL conference, slides referring to price from Thomas Mielke of Oil World (top two), Ivy Ng of CIMB Securities,  Dorab Mistry of Godrej and James Fry of LMC International

26 Sep 2016: India cuts import duties, FFB yield recover to come, 23 Sept RM2,675 /US$651

India has cut the import duties for crude palm oil from 12.5% to 7.5% and refined palm oil from 20% to 15%.

VEGOILS-Palm falls on lower demand, profit-taking - Reuters News 23-Sep-2016 06:50:21 PM -- *Palm up 3.1 pct this week, best weekly gain in six *Market sees lower production, demand to year-end: trader By Emily Chow

UOBKH Research - Plantation: The earliest we can see full FFB yield recovery is by early-4Q17, as the impact from El Nino is still ongoing. 2017 Malaysian production is expected to be slightly better than 2016.

23 Sep 2016: China favours Canada commodities to continue. Australia misses chance as does palm oil? China-Canada bilateral agreements cover canola and beef

China agrees to maintain Canada's access to $2B canola market through 2020, By Janyce McGregor, CBC News Posted: Sep 22, 2016 -- .... .... The canola compromise was reached at the last minute during talks between Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Parliament Hill Thursday. Li is on a four-day official visit to Canada. Intense negotiations went overnight between Canadian officials and Zhi Shuping, the Chinese minister responsible for the canola file who's also in Ottawa for the visit... THe current worldwide surplus of the oilseed led China to put pressure on international producers. China could have cut out or cut back on Canada's shipments in favour of another country like Australia...In this compromise, both sides agreed to conduct additional scientific research to find a "sciencebased and stable solution," Trudeau said..... The beef deal — to resume trade in bone-in beef cuts from cattle under 30 months of age — was among a collection of bilateral agreements signed Thursday on a range of trade and security issues....…/poli…/canada-china-beef-canola-1.3773980

21 Sept 2016: Supplies tighten and palm oil price lifted, Malaysia considering double-deduction for sustainability and suggestion for harmonised duties with Indonesia

AmBank email report 21 Sep 2016: The Edge Daily reported that the government is considering tax suggestions from plantation companies including a double deduction for companies that promote sustainability.  The government is also evaluating suggestions on the tax policy and duty structure of CPO. It was proposed that the export duties for CPO in Malaysia and Indonesia be harmonised through the Council of Palm Oil Producer Countries framework.  

VEGOILS-Palm oil hits five-month high as supplies tighten - Reuters News 20-Sep-2016 07:07:59 PM -- *Palm hits intraday and five month high of 2,725 rgt/T *Tight supplies, stronger soy lifted the market - trader *Palm seen rising to 2,761 rgt/T - technicals By Emily Chow

5 Sept 2016: Malaysia palm oil stocks tight on rising demand

From CIMB Research this morning
■        Malaysia’s palm oil stocks may have fallen by 18% mom to 1.45m tonnes at end-Aug. 
■        The CIMB Futures survey revealed that Aug CPO output rose by 5.4% mom to 1.67m tonnes . 
■        This is not sufficient to cater for the strong 26.9% mom rise in exports in Aug 
■        The short supply resulted in CPO prices rallying to a new high of RM2,845 per tonne 

VEGOILS-Palm rises most in over two weeks on ringgit, rival oils - Reuters News  02-Sep-2016 06:51:04 PM  *Palm rises most since Aug. 17  *Boosted by weaker ringgit, better-performing Dalian - trader *Palm to test 2,578 rgt/T - technicals By Emily Chow

Indonesia environment team threatened with death investigating haze Sep 5, 2016 -- By Bernadette Christina Munthe | JAKARTA
Dozens of Indonesian men, suspected of being hired by an oil palm plantation company, threatened to kill environmental investigators checking on fires on Sumatra island, the environment ministry said. The incident illustrates the difficulties Indonesia faces tackling the illegal burning of vegetation to clear land for palm oil and pulp and paper plantations that causes clouds of smoke every dry season, which at times blanket the region, raising fears for public health and air travel.... The ministry said a group of up to 100 men detained seven investigators for about 12 hours on the weekend and threatened to burn them alive and dump their bodies in a river at an oil palm plantation in Rokan Hulu, Riau province..... The team was following up on satellite images showing "hot spots", or suspected fires, in a concession of PT Andika Permata Sawit Lestari (APSL) oil palm plantation company. There were "strong indications" the mob was deployed by the company, the ministry said in a statement. "With this incident, the investigation of PT APSL will become our top priority," Environment Minister Siti Nurbaya said in the statement, referring to both suspected forest encroachment by the company and the detention of the team. "The environment ministry will investigate this and take strict action in accordance with the law," she said. A company official, contacted by Reuters on Monday, declined to comment.

Environment Minister Condemns Hostage Situation Involving Palm Oil Company By : Edo Karensa | September 04, 2016

Environmental Group to File New Police Reports Against Riau Forest Burners By : Alin Almanar | September 03, 2016

18 August 2016: Palm rises on tight supplies to notch up strongest gains in over 10 months, BMD +4.1% to RM2,643/$659

Indonesia Palm Exports Seen at 3-Month High on China Demand by Yoga Rusmana, Eko Listiyorini  August 18, 2016 —  Shipments seen 6.7% higher in July as China, India buy more. Inventories fall 4.4%, while output rises 0.5%, survey shows. Palm oil shipments from Indonesia, the world’s largest grower, probably rose to the highest level in three months in July after buyers from China to India boosted purchases....

Rupiah’s Five Year of Losses Seen Ending by Top Forecaster  by  Lilian Karunungan  August 18, 2016

VEGOILS-Palm rises on tight supplies to notch up strongest gains in over 10 months - Reuters News 17-Aug-2016 06:54:45 PM *Palm resumes upward trend on tight supplies *Strongest gain since Sept 25, highest levels since June 7 *Tight supplies could persist for a month -trader By Emily Chow

12 August 2016: Malaysia palm oil needs to seek new markets, including challenges in Africa

Malaysian palm oil producers to hunt for new markets 12 August 2016 - KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian palm oil producers could be forced to find new customers in places like Africa as rival exporter Indonesia increases its dominance of major markets such as China and India due to cheaper prices and a more favourable tax system.  Malaysia has long trailed Indonesia as the world's No. 2 producer and exporter of the edible oil, used in everything from chocolate to soap, mainly because of lower land and labour costs in its larger Southeast Asian neighbour. But the introduction of more competitive levies on palm exports from Indonesia in July last year has further entrenched that country's dominance of export markets, according to analysts and industry officials. "In the long run, we have to work very hard to secure other markets which Indonesia is not competing with us in. Indonesia will go to the big markets like China, Pakistan and Bangladesh," Mohammad Jaaffar Ahmad, the head of the Palm Oil Refiners Association of Malaysia, told Reuters earlier this week. "If you are no longer competitive you have to look for other small market outlets like countries in Africa. Demand is still there but the market is more difficult and risky." Africa is the third largest consumer market for palm oil after Southeast Asia and South Asia. It accounted for about 13% of Malaysian shipments last year, with Benin, Nigeria and Tanzania as key export countries....

10 August 2016: Festival to revives China's palm oil imports, India traders talk of shipment disruption

Editor's note: Am also hearing of tightness in India market on some shipment disruption

Hunger for Mooncakes Set to Revive China’s Appetite for Palm Oil - August 10, 2016 — Chinese demand to rise in second-half after slump in first. Monthly palm imports seen rising to 300,000 tons: Analyst

25 July 2016: James Fry - Palm oil import demand to be high in Q4-FY17, Malaysia-Indonesia concerned about anti-PO campaign, China SOE mergers to better compete with foreign-owned processor-traders, BMD RM2,268/$560 

Note: We hear the 28 July Indonesia-Malaysia meeting may be rescheduled. Also, I just saw "Malaysian palm oil" logo, see immediately below from MPOC.

VEGOILS-Palm extends losses, tracking weak overseas soy markets - Reuters News 25-Jul-2016 07:06:00 PM *Palm prices drop, tracking rival soyoil -trader *Palm may fall to 2,258 ringgit per tonne -technicals *Stronger July exports do little to lift prices By Emily Chow

Palm oil import demand to be high in Q4-FY17: LMC International  - James Fry, Chairman, LMC International is also positive on excess supply of crude in coming few quarters and expects the price to go up to $50/ barrels by next year.

Tanker Market: Edible oil freight market remains under pressure in Hellenic Shipping News 21/07/2016 -- The freight market for edible oils hasn’t been able to replicate the success of 2015 so far. In its latest weekly report, shipbroker Intermodal said that “the edible oil markets across the globe remain under pressure on the back of lackluster demand. Some of the main factors causing the low activity are seasonality, increased stocks and wet and dry weather conditions in the west and east respectively. While S. America activity has already been ‘’hit’’ by the summer seasonal cool-off, effects of El Nino are still evident on the palm oil exports from SE Asia. Needless to say that the impact of this has resulted in long lists of ships available and has pushed freight rates down to new lows. In the meantime, the CPP market in both the Atlantic and the Pacific has not provided support to Owners looking to escape the dull palm and vegetable oil market and has further extended their feeling of uncertainty”....

Malaysia, Indonesia join hands to counter anti-palm oil campaign 21 July 2016 -- Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Seri Mah Siew Kong said a meeting would be held with Indonesia on July 28 to discuss the issue. “We acknowledge that we are facing competition from soybean oil producers, but what is regrettable is the presence of an anti-palm oil group that is continuing to lobby purchasing countries,” he told reporters...Mah said the anti-palm oil campaign had caused palm oil exports to China for the first six months this year to drop 50% compared to the same period last year. “We need to review our export strategy. China used to be the world’s biggest importer of palm oil but has now dropped to third. The country has huge potential for us,” he said.....

Downstream focus to lift commodity exports [VIDEO]  By A JALIL HAMID AND ZAIDI ISHAM ISMAIL - 20 July 2016  -- The following are excerpts from a Business Times exclusive interview with Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong.

BKPM Sets Up Team of Investment Officers Following Tax Amnesty Launch  By : Jihaan Risviani  | on 9:21 PM July 19, 2016

Singapore Denies 'Thwarting' Indonesia’s Tax Amnesty Program By : Tabita Diela | on 1:48 PM July 25, 2016 - Jakarta. The government of Singapore has denied allegations that several unnamed Singaporean banks have lured Indonesian customers to maintain their assets in the country, Singapore's Ministry of Finance and Monetary Authority of Singapore said in a statement on Saturday (23/07)....Authorities also claimed that Singapore has not reduced tax rates or amended any of their policies in response to Indonesia's nine-month tax amnesty program.

Factbox: South China Sea ruling - What's at stake for oil, commodities? Singapore (Platts)--22 Jul 2016

Xi’s Neighborhood Diplomacy Runs Aground in South China Sea by Ting Shi   David Tweed   July 15, 2016

COFCO-Chinatex merger to create grain trading force  China Daily, July 16, 2016  -- The State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission on Friday announced the merger of China National Cereals, Oils and Foodstuffs Corp with Chinatex Corp, in the process of creating a bigger rival to compete with the so-called ABCD companies....

'Edible oil demand in India favourable on rising consumption' PTI | Jul 15, 2016

This Infographic Shows How Only 10 Companies Own All The World’s Brands by Kate Ryan -- Credit: Oxfam International.....

17 July 2016: India Palm Oil Imports Fall for Second Month as Demand Drops - June soybean oil shipments seen more than doubling: survey

Malaysian palm oil price edges up, but holds near 10-month low  16 July 2016

Malaysian palm oil price eases on lower China palm olein  15 July 2016

India Palm Oil Imports Fall for Second Month as Demand Drops  Pratik Parija  July 13, 2016 -- Purchases may rebound in next three months on low prices. June soybean oil shipments seen more than doubling: survey.

Vegetable oil imports up 15% in June PTI July 14, 2016 -- Solvent Extractors? Association (SEA) demanded that duty difference between crude and refined vegetable oils should be increased from 7.5 per cent to 15 per cent. At present, import duty on crude edible oil is 12.5 per cent and refined edible oil at 20 per cent. "Import of vegetable oils during June, 2016 is reported at 11,69,456 tonnes compared to 10,16,297 tonnes in June, 2015," SEA said in a statement

15 July 2016: McDonald's to use blended oil in China for healthier diet - plans to replace palm oil

Editor's note: Emerging trend in China and India of worries about cooking oil fat

McDonald's to use blended oil in China for healthier diet 2016­07­15 ­­ McDonald's stores in China will change the cooking oil they use starting next year, despite an increased cost, and introduce new menu items including fruits and vegetables, the Beijing Times reported on Friday. Phyllis Cheung, the CEO of McDonald's China, said the fast­food giant is testing new cooking oil and plans to replace the current palm oil with a mixture of sunflower seed and canola oil. The reasons behind the change are to optimize the nutrition structure, dramatically reduce the consumption of saturated fatty acids, and improve heath.

India Taxing Fat: Bad News For McDonald’s & Yum By Dimitra DeFotis July 13, 2016 --  McDonald’s (MCD) has only seven restaurants in Kerala while Burger King launched its first outlet in the coastal Kerala city of Kochi a few weeks ago, the BBC adds. But the India tax trend isn’t great news for Yum Brands (YUM), which reports earnings after the close Wednesday. Yum operated 372 KFC restaurants in India in 2015, along with 432 Pizza Huts and 7 Taco Bells.

11 July 2016: Kerala Fat Tax singles out multinational brands, Malaysia hauliers have no warranty on trucks use of biodiesel, CME's 4 new palm contracts to start trading today

Fat Tax singles out multinational brands, traditional savouries more unhealthy: MNCs By Ratna Bhushan, ET Bureau | Jul 11, 2016 - The state Budget on Friday proposed a 14.5% tax on "junk food such as pizzas, burgers and doughnuts sold in upscale restaurants". Kerala is the first state to bring in such a tax that some European countries like Hungary and Denmark already levy.

Ambank 11 July 2016: In Malaysia, it was reported that the Association of Malaysian Hauliers, whose members have not received warranty from truck manufacturers on B10, have appealed to the government to conduct trials on prime movers and trailers to verify the impact of B10 on engines. An official was told that B10 is of higher acidity and hence, it is too aggressive on the plastic and rubber seals in the engine.  

CME: 4 new palm contracts to start trading on Monday 8 JULY 2016 -- These four new contracts will broaden CME Group’s offerings within the palm derivatives complex, and include the US dollar Malaysian Crude Palm Oil Calendar futures (CPO), the US dollar Malaysian Palm Olein Calendar futures, the US dollar Malaysian Crude Palm Oil Average Price option and the Bursa Malaysia Crude Palm Oil-Gasoil spread futures.

9 July 2016: Reuters - Palm plunges 5.5 pct to 9-month low tracking soyoil, BMD RM2,268 / US$562

Reuters VEGOILS-Palm plunges 5.5 pct to 9-month low tracking soyoil  Jul 8, 2016 - * Sluggish export demand weighs on market * Palm heads for fifth straight weekly fall * Sharp falls in China hurt confidence-dealer MUMBAI, July 8 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures fell5.5 percent on Friday to their lowest level in nine months,following losses in rival soyoil and on sluggish export demand. Benchmark palm oil futures for September delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange were down3.7 percent at 2,268 ringgit ($561.80) per tonne as of 0811 GMT,after falling as much as 5.6 percent earlier in the day to 2,223ringgit, the lowest level since Oct. 9, 2015.

8 July 2016: Falls in rival vegetable oil narrows palm oil discount

Ambank 8 July 2016 - Plantation Sector: Soybean prices plummet. Yesterday, soybean and soybean oil prices dropped due to the improvements in rainfall in US. In addition, Bloomberg reported that slower Chinese demand is adding to the negative undertone. Soybean for July delivery fell by 4.7% while soybean oil price plummeted by 1.7%. USDA is expected to release its monthly demand and supply report today....Based on yesterday's prices, the discount between soybean oil and CPO was 9.6% or US$63/tonne. Five-year average price discount was 15.7%.  

Reuters VEGOILS-Palm oil snaps three sessions of gains - Reuters News 05-Jul-2016 06:32:37 PM *Tracks falls in rival vegetable oils *Palm could seek support around 2,342 rgt/t - Techs By Emily Chow

7 July 2016: Good palm oil harvesting and processing keeps cancer contaminants to 'insignificant levels'. Palm Oil Stockpiles in Malaysia Seen Climbing, NGOs call for EU regulations on deforestation commodities, India worries about palm oil in fast food, new Malaysia Minister

Good palm oil harvesting and processing keeps cancer contaminants to 'insignificant levels', says industry By Niamh Michail+, 07-Jul-2016 -- Palm oil that is harvested at the right moment, pressed quickly and processed at appropriate temperatures contains insignificant levels of contaminants - if any, says the Italian Union for Sustainable Palm Oil. "This should be the standard for quality products," it says.

Palm Oil Stockpiles in Malaysia Seen Climbing as Demand Weakens by  Anuradha Raghu July 5, 2016

Soyabean oil recovers from Brexit punch By Sutanuka Ghosal, ET Bureau | Jun 28, 2016

NGOs call for soy, palm oil and beef deforestation laws By David Burrows , 05-Jul-2016 -- NGOs have urged the EU to expand regulations that curb deforestation beyond timber to encompass commodities like soy, palm oil and beef.

Three McDonald’s outlets in Jaipur found using 16-day-old oil by Deep Mukherjee, Hindustan Times, Jaipur |  Updated: Jun 28, 2016  -- A routine inspection drive conducted by the Jaipur health department earlier this month revealed that three branches of McDonald’s – a popular fast food chain – were reportedly using oil that was over 16 days old. The discovery has spurred department officials to check if popular fast food chains in the city adhere to prescribed food safety standards. “During an inspection drive on June 17, we were shocked to find that the oil being used by three McDonald’s outlets was 16 days old. The oil had turned black because it was being heated constantly at 360 degrees Celsius for all those days. The management was unable to give us a satisfactory answer,” said Narottam Sharma, chief medical and health officer, Jaipur. There were other problems too. “We also found that palmolein oil was being used at all McDonald’s branches in Jaipur. Palmolein oil is less healthy when compared to other edible oils such as soybean oil,” Sharma said....

It's like homecoming for Mah Siew Keong  By FAZLEENA AZIZ - 28 June 2016 -- PUTRAJAYA: Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong feels like he is “finally home” after assuming the post of Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister. Mah, who is also Gerakan president, said the ministry was a portfolio held by the former and late Gerakan president Tun Dr Lim Keng Yaik from 1986 till 2004. “I am excited to be here, as this portfolio used to be termed as the Gerakan portfolio with the late Lim, who was a minister here for a long period. “A lot of my colleagues in the party said it feels like coming home to this ministry,” he said, after clocking in to his new job today. Mah was accompanied by his new deputy Datuk Datu Nasrun Datu Mansur and the ministry’s secretary-general Datuk M. Nagarajan....As the new minister, he said he would look into value-added creation for Malaysian products such as palm oil; uphold smallholders’ interest and government-to-government initiatives. Nasrun meanwhile, says the portfolio is appropriate for him as his Silam parliamentary area has a million acres of oil palm plantations. He hopes to contribute more towards the development of the oil palm industry in Sabah....

30 June 2016: Reuters - Palm falls to 7-month low on weak fundamentals, stronger ringgit, BMD RM2,323 / $575

VEGOILS-Palm falls to 7-month low on weak fundamentals, stronger ringgit - Reuters News 29-Jun-2016 06:52:42 PM *Palm hits its lowest level since Nov. 26 at 2,317 rgt/t *Mkt weak on rising output, falling exports, stronger rgt-trader *June full-month export data due for release on Thursday *Palm may drop to 2,017 rgt/t - technicals By Emily Chow  

28 June 2016: French tax drop linked to Airbus and satellite deal concerns, worry about children consuming palm oil rises in Italy

French MPs drop palm oil tax - but accuse producer countries of blackmail By Niamh Michail+, 27-Jun-2016 French politicians have dropped the proposed palm oil tax, leading some politicians to say the country is being blackmailed by producer countries. "We are legislating with a knife at our throats," said one.

Don't give children palm oil, says Italian consumer group By Niamh Michail+, 23-Jun-2016 -- After finding that 12 kids' food products from Nestlé, Barilla, Ferrero and Danone contain high levels of carcinogen 3-MCPD, Italian consumer group Altroconsumo is calling on parents to stop giving products that contain palm oil to children.

25 June 2016: Malaysia - B10 biodiesel implementation postponed, Canada-India FTA to boost "healthier" canola oil

Malaysia - B10 biodiesel implementation postponed Astro Publication June 21, 2016

Canada-India FTA must to boost trade: Lyle Stewart, Canadian minister By Madhvi Sally, ET Bureau | Jun 23, 2016 -- With India aiming to increase productivity and ensure food security, do Canadian farmers and companies see this as an opportunity to partner both at the farm and processing levels? There are many opportunities here - there's room for technology transfer and ways to expand agriculture products sale to India. For example, canola oil is a healthier option than palm oil for a growing Indian population. The sale of canola oil has doubled and is growing fast......

Mixed trend prevails in oil market by Press Trust of India |  New Delhi  June 18, 2016 - A mixed trend prevailed at the wholesale oil and oilseeds market during the week as select edible oils edged up on scattered demand from vanaspati millers and retailers, while a few others turned weak on adequate stocks position.

17 June 2016: Reuters - Palm extends losses to hit 5-month low on weak demand concerns

VEGOILS-Palm extends losses to hit 5-month low on weak demand concerns - Reuters News 16-Jun-2016 07:03:17 PM *Palm declines to 2,412 rgt/T, lowest since Jan. 21 *Bearish palm fundamentals bring market weakness -trader *M'sia CPO export tax deters price gains -trader By Emily Chow

Cooking Oil Price Remains Stable During Ramadan: GAPKI  12 JUNE, 2016 -- Joko added the price of cooking oil is likely to be subdued due to domestic demand that experiences no significant changes. This, he said, is what makes the price of crude palm oil (CPO) practically did not experience a surge this month. 


14 June 2016: Reuters - Palm oil drops for sixth session as output seen rising, BMD RM 2,525 / US$618, Malaysia carmarkers negative on B10 adoption, a global palm oil trade market share estimate

VEGOILS-Palm oil drops for sixth session as output seen rising - Reuters News 13-Jun-2016 07:01:58 PM *Palm hits more than two-week low at 2,524 rgt/T *Output seen rising while exports fall *Palm falls, tracking external markets - trader By Emily Chow

Painful diesel plan BY DANIEL KHOO 14 June 2016 -- Some automotive players are crying foul over the upgrading of the B7 (petroleum diesel blend consisting of 7% palm methyl ester) to the B10 (10% palm methyl ester) biodiesel blend to be used for the transportation sector progressively effective this month. Industry sources said diesel-powered vehicles are not ready for this regulatory move and that the B7 blend is still preferred, given the many unknown factors with the B10 adoption so far...
It is learnt that most auto players are shocked by the announcement and the Malaysian Automotive Association (MAA) is compiling more feedback from its members.

A global palm oil trade market share estimate
Source: Cargill and Bunge refuse to cut ties with palm oil trader by Emiko Terazono June 12, 2016
Note: feedback from a reader on this graphic is that it is "wildly inaccurate" as it misses out many key players

13 June 2016: Reuters - Palm oil falls for fifth session on weak export data, Indonesia to propose minimum wage for ASEAN workers

VEGOILS-Palm oil falls for fifth session on weak export data - Reuters News 10-Jun-2016 06:50:40 PM *Palm falls for fifth consecutive session, loses nearly 3 pct on week *Weaker export numbers not supportive of the market -trader By Emily Chow

Indonesia to propose minimum wage for ASEAN workers, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Fri, June 3 2016 - -- Ambank notes ... Indonesia will propose a minimum wage for workers in countries in South East Asia at the next ASEAN manpower meeting. A government official said that other ASEAN countries have also expressed interest in pushing for a minimum wage for workers in the region. He added that the Indonesia government does not want large multinational companies in ASEAN countries to compete for lowest wages. The government official has proposed that a standard minimum wage be applied throughout South East Asia.  

Unclear if France will revisit ‘discriminatory’ palm oil tax 6 June 2016 / Loren Bell -- The proposed tax became a controversy in Indonesia and Malaysia, the two largest palm oil producers, which lobbied hard to get it rescinded. France consumes less than two-tenths of a percent of the palm oil produced globally, most of which goes to India and China. Palm oil is crucial to the Southeast Asian nations' economies but leads the way in damaging the environment.

6 June 2016: Reuters - Palm rebounds to break 3-week high as rival oils gain

VEGOILS-Palm rebounds to break 3-week high as rival oils gain - Reuters News 03-Jun-2016 07:11:40 PM *Palm records fourth gain out of five sessions *Market reaches intraday high of 2,674 rgt/t, strongest since May 11 *Better performing rival oils prop up the market - trader By Emily Chow

1 June 2016: Malaysia raises biodiesel mandates to B10 and B7

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30 May 2016: Reuters - Palm oil gains for second straight session, tracking Chinese oils, French palm oil tax likely on "non-sustainable" while Indonesia has held up French wheat, China palm oil imports tapering off, India and Pakistan news

Editor's note: Industry chatter on Indonesia showing its political clout by playing the same game as French government - Indonesia is delaying entry of wheat flour. Interesting problem for Monsanto Roundup soybean warning to farmers - the issue is how to segregate and clean the supply chain for export to Europe where this new product is not approved.

Reuters - VEGOILS-Palm falls on stronger ringgit, but sees 1st weekly gain in three - Reuters News 27-May-2016 06:56:58 PM *Palm sees losses at close of trade *Market sees 2 pct weekly gain *Rising ringgit, moderate Ramadan demand cap gains -trader By Emily Chow 

French palm oil tax, pesticide ban likely to pass this year | Reuters, A proposed French tax targeting palm oil will most likely be approved later this year after a meeting between both parliamentary assemblies on Wednesday failed to agree on a wider biodiversity bill, members of the Senate said.... The National Assembly, dominated by the ruling Socialist party agreed in March on a tax starting at 30 euros ($33.5) a tonne in 2017 that would rise by 20 euros a year to 90 euros in 2020. It excluded oils made in a sustainable way... Senators scrapped the tax in mid-May, saying it could be against international trade rules and it would be more appropriate to include it in finance legislation. Barbara Pompili, Secretary of State for Biodiversity, confirmed in Le Monde newspaper on Wednesday that the government would back a tax with an advantage for sustainable oil, but insisted that producing countries should be supported in their fight against deforestation... French wheat exports to Indonesia have been on hold for weeks with exporters blaming the delay on a retaliation by Indonesia against the palm oil tax plan....

Ambank - China’s palm oil imports are tapering off...... From January to April 2016, China’s palm oil imports edged down by 0.1% YoY compared with an 11.4% YoY improvement for soybean. We estimate Malaysia’s market share of China’s palm oil imports to be flat at 35% in April 2016. 

Minn. farmers warned not to plant Monsanto's latest Roundup soybeans - The E.U. has not approved the biotech seeds; the uncertainty could present export problems for U.S. farmers and grain producers.  By Tom Meersman Star Tribune  MAY 23, 2016

India's soybean area seen falling as farmers switch to pulses MUMBAI | BY RAJENDRA JADHAV  May 24, 2016

Patanjali rapped for misleading hair oil, other ads PTI | May 26, 2016...New Delhi, May 26 () Advertising sector watchdog ASCI has rapped Patanjali Ayurved for "false and misleading" claims in its various advertisements, including for its hair oil and washing powder brands..... "The advertisement's claims 'Other than Kacchi Ghani process most of the other edible refined oils and mustard oil are made using neurotoxin Hexagon solvent extraction process. To make profits at the cost of consumers' health many companies mix cheap palm oil in mustard oil", were not substantiated and the claims were misleading," it said.
"The statement also unfairly denigrates other oils/ mustard oil," the advertising watchdog added....

Any need for self-sufficiency in edible oil? by ZIA BANDAYPublished: May 23, 2016...

Pakistan - Edible oil demands seen at 10-year low in upcoming Ramazan  By Erum ZaidiMay 28, 2016 .... Ruchi Soya and Adani Wilmar plan joint venture in India  May 25, 2016... Ruchi Soya and Adani Wilmar said on Wednesday they planned a joint venture in India to tap into the country's growing food demand and purchasing power.... The new company will produce and distribute products including vegetable oils, soy foods, grains and biodiesel and hopes to reduce costs across logistics, supply chain management, manpower and distribution, the companies said in a statement. Adani Wilmar, itself a joint venture of India's Adani Group and Singapore's Wilmar International Ltd -- the world's largest palm oil processor and one of the biggest soybean buyers -- will own 66.6 percent of the new joint venture.....

26 May 2016: Big brands are pushing up on reformulations, Panama Canal upgrade - corn, soybean and wheat growers in the U.S. stand to benefit, along with its importers

Big brands are pushing up on reformulations - Nestle reports for 2014 6,973 products with reduced sodium, sugars, trans-fat, total fat, calories or artificial colourings (up from 3,317 and 4,221 number of products changed in 2012 and 2013). Reducing sugar and fat in ready-to-drink products (product example: 54% total sugar reduction, 45% total fat reduction, 25% more protein), substitute partially hydrogenated oil with high oleic soybean oil (product example, 45% SFA reduced, 25,800 tonnes oil substituted and 9,900 tonnes trans fat removed), full fat ice cream case study (new mix recipe: -28% fat, increased protein content, no starch), instant noodle case study (15% sodium reduction whilst improving taste, 50% SFA reduction through pre-drying and oil blend optimization), micronutrients (example, biofortification of maize, cassava, what etc).

source: Nestle presentation, December 2015

Panama Canal Fever Sweeps Globe Again as New Era in Trade Nears by Alex Nussbaum Naureen Malik May 25, 2016... As U.S. gas exports ramp up, new route will slash time to Asia. $5 billion project also shifts oil, crops, container trade....The debut coincides, fortuitously, with a surge in U.S. natural-gas production that has shale outfits suddenly seeking out new export markets. The deeper channels will be able to accommodate the kind of massive tankers that transport liquefied natural gas, shaving eleven days and a third of the cost off the typical round trip to the Far East. Markets from Chile to China will also become more accessible for oil drillers across the Americas while millions of tons of container shipments originating from Asia could start bypassing western U.S. ports and opt to dock instead along the Gulf Coast or Eastern seaboard....For gas and crude oil companies reeling from the recent collapse in prices, the drop in time and shipping costs will provide a much-needed lift. Corn, soybean and wheat growers in the U.S. also stand to benefit, along with importers like Dole Food Co. Inc. and Chiquita Brands International Inc.....

24 May 2016: Reuters - Palm falls to near three-month low on weak Chinese oils, BMD RM2,492/$610

VEGOILS-Palm falls to near three-month low on weak Chinese oils - Reuters News 23-May-2016 07:02:20 PM *Palm sees third session of declines in four *China weakness hits sentiment - trader *Stronger ringgit also weighs on market By Emily Chow

27 April 2016: Reuters - Palm oil up on weaker ringgit, short covering lifted sentiment, BMD RM 2,675 / $682

VEGOILS-Palm oil up on weaker ringgit, short covering lifted sentiment 26-Apr-2016 07:04:46 PM  * Palm gains after two sessions of losses  * Supported by weak ringgit, short covering ahead of market decline expectations -traders  By Emily Chow

22 April 2016: Reuters - Palm oil up for 4th day on lower production outlook, strong demand, Bloomberg - Malaysia's Immigration Mess, BMD  RM 2,734 / $703

VEGOILS-Palm oil up for 4th day on lower production outlook, strong demand - Reuters News 21-Apr-2016 06:21:04 PM *Palm oil futures rise 3.4 pct in 4 sessions of rally *Market hits 2-week high on prospects of lower production By Naveen Thukral

Malaysia's Immigration Mess APRIL 21, 2016  By Adam Minter  The pattern is a familiar one. In February, the Malaysian government proposed allowing 1.5 million Bangladeshi workers into the country to seek employment. A popular backlash ensued and the government quickly backtracked, imposing a moratorium on hiring foreign workers of all kinds, which still stands.... In advanced economies, where this kind of back-and-forth is common, that might be the end of the matter until the next election (or refugee crisis). But in Malaysia something unusual has happened: There are plenty of jobs, but no one to take them....

Malaysia Pays Bigger Premium in Debt Sale as 1MDB Delays Payment by   Y-Sing Liau April 20, 2016 

Newmont Hoping to Sell Entire Indonesia Stake to Private Group by Danielle Bochove April 22, 2016

Tax amnesty should be part of tax reform: Analysts by Ayomi AmindoniAyomi Amindoni Posted: Wed, April 13 2016

Business Lobby Groups Support Tax Amnesty Billi - The proposed Tax Amnesty Bill has received support from business lobby groups as they hope it will have a multiplier effect on job creation, economic improvement and tax compliance. By : Tabita Diela | on 8:46 PM April 19, 2016

Jakarta plans to cut tax for firms to 20%  APR 12, 2016

Panama Papers underscore need for fair tax systems  SUBMITTED BY SRI MULYANI INDRAWATI ON THU, 04/14/2016, The so-called “Panama Papers” scandal reminds us that concealing wealth and avoiding tax payments is neither uncommon nor — in many cases — illegal. But the embarrassing leak exposes something else: The public trust is breached when companies, the rich and the powerful can hide their money without breaking the law. If this breach is left unaddressed, those who aren’t rich enough to hide money will be less willing to pay and contribute to the social contract in which taxes are exchanged for quality services.... As finance minister in my home country of Indonesia, I saw firsthand how a weak tax system eroded public trust and enabled crony capitalism. Shadow markets arose for highly subsidized fuel, family connections secured jobs, and bribes helped public servants beef up their salaries. Tax avoidance among the elites was common and the country couldn’t mobilize the resources we needed to build infrastructure, create jobs, and fight poverty....

20 April 2016: Reuters - Palm oil climbs to one-week high, tracking competing oils BMD2,688 / $692. Soybean and grain prices surges in Chicago.

VEGOILS-Palm oil climbs to one-week high, tracking competing oils - Reuters News 19-Apr-2016 06:50:13 PM *Palm oil sees second day of rebounds after two weeks of losses *Stronger external markets helped lift palm despite stronger ringgit -trader *Cargo surveyors scheduled to release data on Wednesday By Emily Chow

Agriculture Stocks Rally Amid Grain Price Surge in Chicago April 19, 2016; Deere, Monsanto and Mosaic among gainers in New York. Soybeans, corn prices spur speculation on farmer spending.

18 April 2016: Reuters - April output forecast to rise, RM2,716 target aborted; crude oil plunges after output talks fail, Russia and Saudi Arabia eye food taxes

VEGOILS-Palm oil prices head for second week of losses - Reuters News 15-Apr-2016 *Palm oil declines for fourth session this week *April output forecast to rise, seen dampening market - trader *2,716 ringgit per tonne target aborted -technicals By Emily Chow

Oil price & macro: Bloomberg - Oil Plunges After Output Talks Fail Amid Saudi Demands Over Iran, Brent Crude 40.87

Food sector news (update 7): Food safety issues in veg oils, Russia mulls tax on sugar and palm oil?

Saudi Arabia is already preparing for a post-oil era through measures such as an initial public offering of part of Saudi Aramco and mooted taxes on consumer spending and sugary drinks.

14 April 2016: At MPOB PAC Forum

Thomas Mielke at MPOB PAC Forum this morning. Message of challenge of sufficient oils and oilseeds supply, including palm oil (calling for urgent labour policy adjustment in Malaysia). Points to India shortfall and sky-rocketing imports. He expects a need to change the biodiesel viewpoint - it will become a luxury that will no longer be supported by policy and the public. This would likely happen in 5-10 years. There is weak price elasticity on the supply side and in periods of tight supply, he expects mandates not to be enforced. When there is a surplus biodiesel supply would happen. The adjustment will happen first in importing regions, notably Europe; later in producing countries - this shift to flexible mandates. He suggests no more investment in biodiesel facilities. Priority must be on food demand. He notes Peru seeing end of El Nino, but KL feels very hot in the last week - the next question is on La Nina. There has been good weather in soy regions in recent years. This market shows a change in sentiment in the last two weeks - soy traders are looking at changing S&D for 2017 as the area is not increasing in the US and likely not increasing in South America (maybe decline) so 2017/18 may be first season in recent years for declining stocks. This could support palm oil and we could be at early stage of recovery of vegetable oil prices. 

13 April 2016: Reuters - oil hits near one-month low on better output growth forecast, Fast-Food and Industrial Chemicals 

VEGOILS-Palm oil hits near one-month low on better output growth forecast - Reuters News 12-Apr-2016  *Palm oil falls to sixth losing session *Reaches intraday low of 2,633 ringgit, weakest since March 17 *Market fell on better output, needs stronger demand to lift benchmark prices to 3,000 ringgit -trader By Emily Chow

Fast-Food Eaters Have More Industrial Chemicals in Their Bodies - Would you like phthalates with that?  John Tozzi April 13, 2016 — 12:01 PM SGT People who reported eating fast food in the last 24 hours had elevated levels of some industrial chemicals in their bodies, according to a new analysis of data from federal nutrition surveys. The study is the first broad look at how fast food may expose the public to certain chemicals, called phthalates, that are used to make plastics more flexible and durable. The chemicals, which don’t occur in nature, are common in cosmetics, soap, food packaging, flooring, window blinds, and other consumer products. The Centers for Disease Control says "phthalate exposure is widespread in the U.S. population."

18 Mar 2016: France tax on non-sustainable palm and coconut oil softened and to proceed to next vote

Editor's note: The tax would be reviewed by the Upper House in May or June 2016. 
  • Earlier proposed: France will raise the import tax on palm oil from EUR100 (US$110) per ton to EUR300 in 2017, to EUR500 in 2018, EUR700 in 2019 and EUR900 in 2020
  • Tax rate softened, new rate in process for approval by Upper House: 30 euros ($34) in 2017 and rise by 20 euros per year to 90 euros in 2020, rather than start at a flat rate of 90 euros. The new levy, which would come on top of an existing one of 104 euros per tonne. Copra (coconut) and palm kernel oil, also subject to the tax, are commonly used in commercial cooking. They are currently taxed at 113 euros a tonne. The tax would not affect cosmetics and biofuels - two sectors in which vegetable oils are widely used. 

UPDATE 3-French assembly adopts softer tax on palm oil used in food  Fri, Mar 18 02:30 AM GMT; Lawmakers on Thursday also agreed to introduce the new tax gradually to soften its impact. The tax would now start at 30 euros ($34) in 2017 and rise by 20 euros per year to 90 euros in 2020, rather than start at a flat rate of 90 euros. The new levy, which would come on top of an existing one of 104 euros per tonne, would be well below the upper house's original proposal that started at 300 euros.Indonesia and Malaysia have said the tax is discriminatory and Indonesia raised the issue at the World Trade Organisation earlier this month when the level of the new levy was still at 300 euros a tonne for all palm oil used in food. "This tax clearly respects the Treaty of the World Trade Organisation because it only targets palm and copra oil that do not meet sustainable environmental criteria," she said. But Malaysian producers did not agree. "The 'differential' tax proposal is a clear violation of both WTO and EU rules," Yusof Basiron head of the Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) said in a statement, calling a tax at 90 euros disproportionate. Copra (coconut) and palm kernel oil, also subject to the tax, are commonly used in commercial cooking. They are currently taxed at 113 euros a tonne. The tax would not affect cosmetics and biofuels - two sectors in which vegetable oils are widely used. France imports about 100,000 tonnes of Indonesian palm oil a year and imported 11,000 tonnes of Malaysian palm oil last year...

RI threatens to report France to WTO over palm oil tax by Hans Nicholas Jong The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | March 17 2016 | 8:40 AM If the bill is passed into law, France will raise the import tax on palm oil from EUR100 (US$110) per ton to EUR300 in 2017, to EUR500 in 2018, EUR700 in 2019 and EUR900 in 2020, while leaving taxes on other vegetable oils such as olive, corn and peanut oil practically untouched, ranging between EUR113.24 and EUR170.13 per ton. In comparison, the selling price of palm oil is only 550 euro per ton. - See more at:

15 Mar 2016: Reuters - Malaysia raises April palm oil export duty to 5 pct 

Editor's note: Market specialists regard this to have been surprisingly delayed.

Malaysia raises April palm oil export duty to 5 pct - Reuters News 15-Mar-2016 09:43:42 AM KUALA LUMPUR, March 15 (Reuters) - Malaysia, the world's second largest palm oil producer after Indonesia, raised its crude palm oil export tax from zero to 5 percent for April, a government circular showed on Tuesday, ending a duty-free policy held since May 2015. The Southeast Asian nation calculated a reference price of 2,500.34 ringgit per tonne for April. A price above 2,250 ringgit per tonne incurs a tax, which starts from 4.5 percent and can reach a maximum 8.5 percent.

10 Mar 2016: Reuters - Palm oil jumps as dry weather seen slashing global output, BMD RM 2,558 / $620.72 

Editor's note: At the heavily watched POC KL, the largest palm oil conference, observers note unusually hearing all three palm oil predictors aligned point to a further price rise in coming months; due to dry weather weakening output, with an unusual drop in production amidst trend of continual increase. Top photo: Dorab Mistry cautions on biodiesel mandate push making palm uncompetitive. Suggests flexibility of mandate with this in view. I have been hearing same from various traders. Bottom photo -  Dr James Fry presenting, LMC International Ltd, with details of dry weather impact on the oil palm trees.

VEGOILS-Palm oil jumps as dry weather seen slashing global output 09-Mar-2016 06:57:24 PM *Global palm oil output could drop by 3 mln T-analysts *Palm oil prices could rise to 3,000 ringgit/T-analysts By Rajendra Jadhav; Malaysian palm oil futures will climb nearly 20 percent to around 3,000 ringgit a tonne as dry conditions brought by the El Nino weather pattern curb output in major producers, said top industry analyst Dorab Mistry. James Fry, chairman of commodities consultancy LMC International, said global palm oil production could fall by over 2 million tonnes this year. Palm oil prices are expected to recover to trade around 2,700-3,000 ringgit a tonne by June, Thomas Mielke, editor of Hamburg-based newsletter Oil World said.... Oil prices rose above $40 a barrel on Wednesday.

3 Mar 2016: UK palm oil imports see huge drop  on negative image and uncompetitive prices, Reuters - Palm oil falls to one-month low on stronger ringgit, weak demand, BMD RM2,488 /$598

Editor's note: In EU food usage, palm oil tonnage has dropped significantly in recent years across major EU countries and in many key food sectors including snack foods.

UK palm oil imports see huge drop By Emile Mehmet 01 March 2016; Palm oil imports by the UK have significantly declined over recent years, due to negative portrayal of the commodity in the media, uncompetitive prices, and a subsequent switch to other competing oils.

VEGOILS-Palm oil falls to one-month low on stronger ringgit, weak demand - Reuters News 02-Mar-2016 *Palm oil may drop to 2,481 ringgit -technicals *Feb palm oil exports fall 17-18 pct m/m - data By Emily Chow

29 Feb 2016: Reuters - Palm oil rises on weaker ringgit, but set for weekly fall, 26 Feb BMD 2,544, Indonesia plantation fertiliser subsidy sham - leaked government report 

Editor's note: Addition of plantation subsidy sham article 14 Feb.

VEGOILS-Palm oil rises on weaker ringgit, but set for weekly fall 26-Feb-2016 08:10:27 PM *Palm gains for second day, supported by weaker ringgit *Market seen correcting after five-day slide -trader *Still set for second weekly fall By Emily Chow ...Palm oil could approach resistance at 2,549 ringgit a tonne as the bounce from the Feb. 24 low of 2,517 ringgit has not been completed, said Wang Tao, a Reuters market analyst for commodities and energy technicals..... 

Subsidy sham: Fertilizers reach Indonesia plantations, not small farmers by SUKOHARJO/JAKARTA, INDONESIA | BY RANDY FABI AND BERNADETTE CHRISTINA MUNTHE Feb 14, 2016; Millions of dollars worth of subsidized fertilizers meant for small Indonesian farmers are being sold to big plantations, such as palm oil and rubber, at huge profits by state-backed retailers, a government report viewed by Reuters shows.... According to the yet-to-be-published government report, parts of which were seen by Reuters, as much as 30 percent of subsidized fertilizers were misallocated in some areas of Indonesia last year. Investigators with the ombudsman found subsidized fertilizer being sold at as high as 2,500 rupiah ($0.1854) per kg in 2015, around 40 percent above the state-set price but below the non-subsidized 4,200 rupiah that plantations must pay.... "The kiosks are selling fertilizer to plantations and not to the small farmers," said an investigator, who declined to be named as the report, based on data from five key rice-growing districts on three different islands, had not been finalised..."In 2015, there were 40 cases processed by law enforcement. It is better now. Before farmers were complaining about fertilizer scarcity, now not as much.".... 

22 Feb 2016: KL and Sabah travel warnings

Australian Government Issues Terror Warning for Kuala Lumpur by  Lianting Tu  and Pooi Koon Chong  February 21, 2016; Attacks may target Western interests in Malaysian capital. U.K., New Zealand advise against travel to state of Sabah.

17 Feb 2016:  Reuters - Palm oil falls for 2nd session on slowing exports, BMD RM2,588 / $623 

Editor's note: News review is in progress, please see 16 Feb posting

VEGOILS-Palm oil falls for 2nd session on slowing exports 16-Feb-2016  *Palm oil futures fall 0.4 pct, early gains fizzle out *Top buyers India, China reducing purchases, ample soyoil supply By Naveen Thukral

Back news: Maybank IB sees CPO price hitting RM2,700 12 January 2016

16 Feb 2016: UK policy to stop "unofficial sanctions" against "unethical goods"?

Editor's note: NGOs have targeted public bodies (influential and possibly large consumers of goods and services) in market (unofficial) boycott campaigns. The UK is clamping down on this? The Independent's political writer says the plan to criminalize this bundles together the market-access interest of products like arms trade, fossil fuels, tobacco products, and Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank. The most important apparently being the latter. UK politicians now say that public bodies that continue to pursue boycotts will face “severe penalties” - even on palm oil market campaigns? 

Israel boycott ban: Shunning Israeli goods to become criminal offence for public bodies and student unions. Critics say move amounts to a 'gross attack on democratic freedoms' by Oliver Wright Political Editor  15 February 2016; ... Under the plan all publicly funded institutions will lose the freedom to refuse to buy goods and services from companies involved in the arms trade, fossil fuels, tobacco products or Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank.... The only exemption will be UK-wide sanctions decided by the Government in Westminster. Government sources said the ban could also apply to student union boycotts but added this was a “grey area”..... Significantly, and underlining the main target of the ban, the formal announcement will be made by the Cabinet Office minister Matt Hancock when he visits Israel this week. Israeli companies, along with other firms which have investments in the occupied West Bank, have been among those targeted by unofficial boycotts in the past.... Mr Hancock said the current position where local authorities had autonomy to make ethical purchasing decisions was “undermining” Britain’s national security. “We need to challenge and prevent these divisive town-hall boycotts,” he said.... 

News review in progress....

Malaysia - Industry players, Home Ministry discuss foreign worker levy 16 February 2016 - See more at:

Insight: Unfair restrictions on palm oil in global trade by Iman Pambagyo, Jakarta | Insight | Wed, February 10 2016... it should not have surprised anyone when Indonesia expressed great concern after the French Senate on Jan. 21 adopted Amendment No. 36 to a proposed law on biodiversity, which will impose progressive taxes on palm oil, palm kernel and food containing such oils. It is proposed that taxes be applied on these products, beginning at ¤300 (US$335) per ton in 2017 and gradually increasing to a staggering rate of ¤900 per ton in 2020 and further increased annually, while leaving taxes on other vegetable oils such as olive, corn and peanut oil practically untouched, ranging between ¤113.24 and 170.13 per ton. To give some perspective, the selling price of palm oil is only ¤550 per ton.  .... Discouraging the utilization and consumption of palm oil in favor of other, European home-grown oils, as prescribed by Amendment 367, will be felt as a punitive measure by Indonesian farmers. It is not a friendly way of addressing issues, and it is not at all an effective way of promoting peace through commerce. Let us not forget what an American founding father, president Thomas Jefferson, taught us two centuries ago: Peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none. The writer is former Indonesian ambassador to the WTO. - See more at:

Issue of the day: RI strongly protests France’s palm  oil tax plan | Readers Forum | Sat, February 06 2016 - See more at:

Palm oil producers angry over NUS finding on cholesterol link FEB 5, 2016; Malaysian palm oil producers are upset over a finding by National University of Singapore (NUS) researchers that links palm oil consumption with higher levels of "bad" cholesterol in the body. Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Amar Douglas Uggah Embas is expected to raise the issue with the Republic's authorities, The Star reported on Wednesday....

Malaysia to raise unfavourable palm oil report with Singapore BY JACK WONG 3 February 2016

Malaysia Palm Oil Reserves Shrink to 6 Month Low on El Nino by   Anuradha Raghu February 10, 2016

China’s slowdown to continue hurting Malaysian exports BY P. ARUNA 11 February 2016; Malaysia’s trade balance dipped to RM8bil in December from a RM12.2bil high in October, partly due to the slowdown in China’s economy. Export value increased by only 1.4% year-on-year to RM68.3bil in December, compared with a 6.3% increase in November, while imports increased by 3.2% to RM60.3bil after growing 9.1% the previous month. As a result, the trade surplus for December fell RM916.2mil or 10.3% to RM8bil.... Overall, it said, growth in exports was attributed to electrical and electronic (E&E) products, which accounted for 36.3% of total exports, and timber and timber-based products, which contributed 2.9% of total exports....Exports of mining goods, however, saw declines, with LNG, which contributed 5.6% to total exports falling 36.7% or RM2.2bil to RM3.8bil due to the decrease in both average unit value and export volume. Refined petroleum products also fell 34.4% or RM1.5bil to RM2.8bil. Exports were also dragged down by palm oil and palm-based products, which dropped 7.0% to RM5.1bil. For the year 2015, Malaysia’s total trade grew by 1.2% to RM1.47 trillion compared with RM1.45 trillion the previous year, supported by stronger growth of 5.1% in the second half....

India's Palm Oil Imports Rebound From First Decline in 12 Months by Pratik Parija February 12, 2016

4 Reasons to Reject the TPP by Chris Eaton February 5, 2016; 1. Secret Negotiations With Corporate Lobbyists, 2. The TPP Means Dead Sharks, Tigers, and Elephants, 3. The TPP Gives a Future to Fracking, 4. The TPP Gives Corporations Too Much Power....

Analysts see ‘largely neutral’ impact of TPPA for plantation sector January 29, 2016 Read more:

10 Feb 2016:  Russia US$200/tonne duty on palm oil from July? Palm oil share in India drops to drop to 61%. Fiscal stimulus in Indonesia, but worries in Russia, Malaysia and elsewhere. BMD RM2,575/$619.74 (5 Feb)

Editor's note: 
  • Read in AmBank update as follows  "Russia may be imposing duties on palm oil. The excise duty of US$200/tonne may be implemented in summer ie from July onwards. Bloomberg reported that the proposal was supported by Russia’s President.... the Palm Oil Council formed primarily by Malaysia and Indonesia will seek to lobby other ASEAN countries in near future to implement B5...."  Please refer to AmBank report for more. And subsequently on 15 Feb: "Russia’s anti-monopoly watchdog has opposed the proposed import duty on palm oil as it would lead to higher prices for products, which use palm oil as an ingredient."
  • Worth mulling how the funding gaps in destination markets will encourage the taxman to eye taxes on things like palm oil. Similarly, in origin markets, will funding gaps also be a problem for biodiesel supports? Or will biodiesel support be regarded as a socio-political need for small farmers?
  • LMC and Godrej Int'l forecast CPO to hit RM2700 per-tonne in Q2
  • CIMB reports that the Russia and France (see 2 Feb posting) taxes recently reported would affect about 800,000 plus tonnes of palm oil consumption. Please refer to CIMB report for more.

VEGOILS-Palm oil hits nearly 21-mth high on short-covering, falling production 05-Feb-2016 06:36:25 PM *Posts biggest weekly jump in more than four months *Palm could further rally if Jan end-stocks fall -trader By Emily Chow

Cheap Soybeans Threaten Palm Oil's Top Spot in Indian Kitchens by   Pratik Parija  February 5, 2016;  Soybean oil imports seen at record 4 million tons in 2015-16. Palm oil's share shrinks to 61 percent from 90 percent in 2011

Indonesian Growth Beats Estimates as Widodo Lifts Spending  Chris Brummitt   Rieka Rahadiana  Herdaru Purnomo February 5, 2016

Putin to Weigh $10.4 Billion Anti-Crisis Plan With Funding Gap by Olga Tanas  Andrey Biryukov  February 10, 2016  Government has to find funding for 134 billion rubles in plan. Russia will tap sovereign wealth fund for anti-crisis measures.

Malaysian Banker Nazir Razak Concerned about Country's Financial Future by Shamim Adam February 2, 2016

4 Feb 2016: Reuters - Palm oil gains to new 20-month high on lower output, Malaysia plantation equities drop on spike in foreign worker levy, BMD RM2,547/$603

Editor's note: Analysts point to 4-5% increase in per tonne cost as impact of increased foreign worker levy. Malaysia fiscal adjustment is resulting in several revenue raising efforts - including RM2.5 billion from foreign worker levies (plantations is one of several sectors that rely on non-domestic workers) and RM2 billion raised from the telco sector - which saw bigger immediate share price reactions of -7 to -15%. Plantations are also agitated by higher minimum wages implementation. However, Peninsula Malaysia minimum wage has now converged with that of Jakarta (US$ basis). This raises questions about Malaysia industry adaptation.

VEGOILS-Palm oil gains to new 20-month high on lower output 03-FEB-2016 By Emily Chow *Palm oil intraday high strongest since May 19, 2014 *Expected lower production in February boosts market -trader

Palm oil shares tumble on sudden 154% spike in foreign worker levy BY HANIM ADNAN and JACK WONG  3 February 2016

2 Feb 2016: France plans to impose progressive tax on all palm oil-based products

Editor's note: Not the first time France has proposed a tax. Search "Nutella Tax" in this blog and online for more info! RSPO says it will seek an exemption for its certified products.

Indonesia has strongly condemned Frances plan to impose progressive tax on all palm oil-based products.... a tax has been included in a bill on bio-diversity passed by the French Senate on January 21. "The palm oil tax included in the bill will become effective from 2017, and will amount to 300 Euros per ton for 2017, 500 euros per ton for 2018, 700 euros per ton for 2019 and 900 euros per ton for 2020 while the tax being charged now is 103 euros per ton," (First Deputy for Maritime Sovereignty, Arif Havas Oegroseno) said.... the tax does not apply to rapeseed, sun flower, soy bean or vegetable oils produced in France... Along with Malaysia in CPOPC, Indonesia will also undertake diplomatic efforts to press for the withdrawal of the taxation plan.....

27 Jan 2016: Malaysia growers eye threshold for the windfall tax and worry about labour and other costs. Reuters VEGOILS-Palm oil extends gains on output worries, short covering. BMD RM2,475 / $577

Editor's note: Growers are keenly eyeing the forecasts for prices rising beyond RM2500 and the threshold for the windfall tax. Also, lot of concern about labour cost. However, note from 14 Jan: Just read in a prominent KL broker report...... Indonesia has announced the new levels of minimum wage for 2016F. Interestingly, the minimum wage in Jakarta of RM978/month is close to the proposed minimum wage of RM1,000/month for Peninsular Malaysia in 2016F. This is mainly due to the appreciation of the Rupiah against the RM...

Groups seek authorities help to reduce costs by Ooi Tee Ching, NST, 26 Jan 2016, screenshot of table on taxes and fees, upstream:

Reuters VEGOILS-Palm oil extends gains on output worries, short covering 26-Jan-2016 06:23:20 PM *Palm oil gains for second day, reaches one-week high *Market unlikely to see selloffs ahead of long holidays -trader By Emily Chow

25 Jan 2015: Wishing all celebrants, Happy Thaipusam! BMD is closed for public holiday observance. Mulling long cycles. American olive oil. Palm oil may retest resistance at 2,495 ringgit? 

Thought I'd up something here on mid and longer-cycle stock and price indicators - Long cycles: Mulling a posting in Linkedin by Jeffrey Tian, on bean stocks in 25 year commodity cycle

Is American Olive Oil About to Have Its Moment? European olive oil producers have long sold their dregs to unsophisticated Americans, like jug winemakers did in the 1970s. But as fraud investigations continue to rock the European olive oil industry, an American upstart is upsetting tradition and muscling into the ancient industry by fixing the tree itself.

VEGOILS-Palm oil rebounds on short-covering, lower output expectations By Emily Chow 22-Jan-2016 06:19:22 PM *Prices to remain above 2,400 rgt until production improves-trader *Palm oil may retest resistance at 2,495 ringgit 

21 Jan 2016: Reuters - palm oil eyes weak exports, BMD RM2,455/$559 

Editor's note: Please do refer to 20 Jan posting for a good PO-GO chart... Biodiesel news: Bloomberg - Oil Rout Threatens to Scupper Demand for Palm Oil in Biofuel - government mandates may miss

VEGOILS-Palm oil drops nearly 1 percent on bleak exports By Emily Chow  20-JAN-2016  *Jan. 1-20 Malaysian palm oil exports down 8-10 pct m/m *Export data weaker than expected -trader

18 Jan 2016:  Rabobank reckons China doesn't need any more extra palm, India CGMs can't boost volume as commodity prices fall, palm continues to feel internally bullish while questions about biodiesel mandates emerge and some see El Nino peak; BMD RM2,411 / $548 

Editor's note: Since early Jan, BMD has been quite stable despite falling crude oil. Near end of last week, I was on the line with an energy market specialist, and she noted that POGO was +215. But there are a few doubts about producer (particularly Indonesia) biodiesel mandates now, read - 15 January 2016: Reuters - Crude oil tumble hits Southeast Asia's biodiesel ambitions - industry experts say it doesn't make sense for Malaysia and Indonesia levy fund would be insufficient to cover the target amount, and here's the posting on crude oil and macro: Recently, I was also interested to see the BMD key indicators and demographics (source BMD, Kenanga Deutsche Futures):

Note: Must ask how "locals" figures vis-a-vis domestic institution and domestic retail.

Growing appetite for soybeans to crimp China's palm oil needs 18-Jan-2016 By Emily Chow; China to tap into ample global soybean supplies for animal feed. • Expanding livestock sector contributes to China's soybean demand. • Growth in China's palm oil use to slow -USDA data; palm oil faces a double whammy, said Pawan Kumar, director of Rabobank Singapore. "It is also losing out to soyoil given China's preference for soybean for its livestock industry."... "As a result, whatever growth there will be for vegetable oil demand in China will be for soyoil ... This pretty much can be solved by additional crushing. In that scenario, it's hard to see any import growth on the palm side," said Kumar. He expects China's purchases of the tropical oil to hold steady at 5.8 million tonnes in the year to September 2016, after growing only 2 percent in 2014/15.

India's consumer goods companies are unable to boost volumes as they pass on cheaper costs

VEGOILS-Palm oil rises on short-covering, bullish data 15-Jan-2016 06:16:16 PM *Palm is held by improving exports, lower output *Fundamental factors not strong enough to rally prices -trader By Emily Chow KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 15 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures rose on Friday, underpinned by improving export data and expected lower output and as traders covered short positions, but were still set for a small weekly fall.

Top Palm Buyer Cuts Imports First Time in a Year on Reserves by Pratik Parija January 14, 2016

Indonesia Palm Exports Seen at Four-Month Low on Weak Demand by Yoga Rusmana and Eko Listiyorini January 11, 2016. Slump in crude oil reduces appeal of palm used in biofuel. Traders watching for further impact on output from El Nino.

Malaysia Palm Output Seen at 10-Month Low, Trims Stockpiles by Anuradha Raghu

El Nino Is So Last Year, Here Comes La Nina to Bring Havoc by Eko Listiyorini  January 6, 2016

6 Jan 2016: El Nino's Peak Has Weather Forecaster Warning of La Nina - Bloomberg

El Nino's Peak Has Weather Forecaster Warning of La Nina by  Phoebe Sedgman  January 5, 2016; ... A number of El Nino-Southern Oscillation indicators suggest that the 2015-16 El Nino has peaked and weather models predict it will decline in coming months, Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology said on its website on Tuesday. Conditions will return to neutral during the second quarter with a chance of La Nina in the second half of 2016, it said... “Neutral and La Nina are equally likely for the second half,” the bureau said. A repeat of El Nino is the least likely outcome, it said. The current El Nino is rated as one of the three strongest since 1950... La Nina can also roil agricultural markets as it changes weather. A large part of the agricultural U.S. tends to dry out during La Nina events, while parts of Australia and Indonesia can be wetter than normal. Citigroup Inc. has said that a transition to a strong La Nina may present significant upside potential for grains price volatility....

4 Jan 2016: Malaysia losing market share due to lower refined palm oil exports , Reuters VEGOILS-Palm oil falls from 18-month high on declining exports, up 9.5 pct for the year, BMD RM2,480 / US$578

VEGOILS-Palm oil falls from 18-month high on declining exports, up 9.5 pct for the year - RTRS 31-DEC-2015 06:26:36 PM *Palm oil reverses course to lose 0.6 percent *Market loses on weaker export demand, year-end profit taking *Palm futures up 9.5 percent in annual gains in 2015 By Emily Chow
Malaysia losing market share due to lower refined palm oil exports | New Straits Times

29 December 2015: Indonesia Nov palm oil output falls, Jan-Nov exports grow 21% yoy, India imports up 10% in Nov but aims to reduce imports over time, MPOB aims for Cairo Egypt distribution hub

Indonesia Nov palm oil output falls 7 pct from Oct -Reuters survey Dec 17, 2015 * Indonesia's Nov CPO output seen at 2.8 mln T    * Indonesia CPO exports seen at 2.09 mln T for Nov  By Michael Taylor and Bernadette Christina Munthe; JAKARTA, Dec 17 Indonesia's crude palm oil (CPO) output slipped 7 percent in November from the previous month, a Reuters survey showed, as the main harvest season ended and monsoon weather arrived in key growing areas.     CPO output in November was 2.8 million tonnes, down from 3.01 million tonnes in October, according to the median estimate in a survey of four Indonesian industry officials and plantation companies.     "November production dropped because the main harvest season almost ended," said Fadhil Hasan, executive director at the Indonesian Palm Oil Association (GAPKI).      "Exports are lower because of decreasing demand from India
and the U.S., while domestic consumption is increasing because of the biodiesel mandate."

Indonesia's Crude Palm Oil Exports Grow 21% y/y in January-November 2015, 18 December 2015; The Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association (Gapki) said Indonesia's crude palm oil exports stood at 2.38 million in November 2015, down 8.6 percent from CPO exports in the preceding month. This decline is attributed to weaker demand from Indonesia's main export markets and to the cheap price of soybeans (soybean oil is a close substitute to palm oil for food and biodiesel uses). However, on a year-on-year basis, Indonesia's CPO exports are up 21 percent (y/y) to 23.9 million in the January-November 2015 period....

India - Palm Oil Imports Jump by 10% in November: SEA by PTI, Modified: December 14, 2015

Analysis: India aims to reduce palm oil imports - As India’s edible oil import bill keeps growing, local government has taken to steps to ensure the country reaches its potential of becoming a larger producer. By Shirish Nadkarni, Mumbai  14 December 2015

MPOB: Malaysia Wants To Make Egypt The Distribution Hub For Palm Oil by Bernama - Malaysian National News Agency December 15 2015



16 December 2015: Reuters - Palm oil posts biggest drop since Sept 30 on weak export data BMD RM2,333/US$543

VEGOILS-Palm oil posts biggest drop since Sept 30 on weak export data  15-DEC-2015 06:36:51 PM By Emily Chow *Malaysia's Dec. 1-15 palm oil exports down 35.6 pct m/m-ITS *Palm oil hits lowest intraday level since Dec 2 *Recovery in exports to boost market - trader..."Palm fell because of the drastic dip in exports. If this continues, end-stocks could hit a new high of around 3.1 million tonnes at end-December," said a trader based in Kuala Lumpur....

14 December 2015: Reuters - Palm oil at 2-month high as rains seen disrupting supply BMD RM2,440/US$568, Ringgit declines as China seen allowing weak yuan


Note from AmBank briefing, excerpt: Bloomberg cited Oil World as saying that soybean prices may have bottomed... The Head of Indonesia Estate Crop Fund for Palm Oil said that Indonesia’s palm oil exports may fall for the first time in 2016F as more palm oil is being used domestically to produce biodiesel...


VEGOILS-Palm oil at 2-month high as rains seen disrupting supply 11-DEC-2015 06:44:48 PM By Naveen Thukral *Palm oil climbs 2.7 pct, fears of excessive rains drives prices *Palm to gain more ground 2016 as El Nino cuts yields - analysts; SINGAPORE, Dec 11 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures jumped 2.7 percent on Friday, rising to a two-month high as forecasts of rain in key producing areas heightened concerns over supply disruptions in the monsoon season. The palm oil market dropped to a one-week low on Thursday due to a steep decline in exports. Analysts and traders expect the market to gain more ground early next year as the El Nino weather pattern reduces yields and Indonesia, the world's top producer, uses more palm oil to make biodiesel.

Ringgit declines as China seen allowing weak yuan with new index  By Bloomberg / Bloomberg   | December 14, 2015


12 December 2015: Rabobank outlook, GAPKI view, Malaysia-China MOU, DuPont-Dow Chem merger

Rabobank report - Food, agri players must brace for a new normal Pawan Kumar, Singapore | Opinion | Tue, December 08 2015... A report released by Rabobank titled Bear with Grains, While Softs Lift Off predicts that 2016 will see grains and oilseeds continue to trade at around current price levels, but some upside is expected on soft commodities such as sugar and coffee. For palm oil, reduced production could lead stocks to decline by 8.5 percent in 2015/2016 and increase prices by 10 percent to average MYR 2,420 per ton compared to this year. While Malaysian production is expected to decline by 2.4 percent to 19.4 million tons, Rabobank expects Indonesia’s palm oil production to rise by 1 million tons, as loss of yield due to dry weather is compensated by the country’s increasing maturity in plantation techniques.Overall palm production at global level is expected to rise marginally by 800,000 tons against 2 million tons last year. - See more at:

Experts see fall in palm oil production in Malaysia, Indonesia due to El Nino impact by p. aruna  2 December 2015

Indonesia's Palm Oil Exports Forecast by Gapki to Stagnate in 2015 Amid Low Prices By : Dion Bisara | on 2:13 PM December 09, 2014 ... The country is forecast to export 21.6 million metric tons of crude palm oil next year, up 1.4 percent from an estimated 21.3 million metric tons this year, said Fadhil Hasan, Gapki's executive director, on Monday.  Fadhil estimated the exports to be valued at up to $17.3 billion in 2015, down from this year's target of $18.4 billion. He hoped the government would maintain its zero percent export tax policy — implemented since Oct. 1 — into next year to boost exports.   CPO production is seen rising only 4.8 percent to 32.5 million tons in 2015 from an estimated 31 million tons this year, Fadhil said, citing the association's forecast of drought and a ban on opening new peatland for palm plantation that would curb yields.

Oil Palm Production Next Year May Drop 03 December, 2015

Malaysia, China ink eight MoUs, agreements in various fields Monday November 23, 2015; ... Wang also signed the MoU on quality and safety of Malaysian palm oil to China while Plantation, Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas signed on behalf of Malaysia. With the MoU, both sides agreed to further intensify cooperation in the agriculture field and will hold the 5th Agriculture Joint Working Group Meeting. - See more at: 

CPO prices to average RM2,200 to RM2,400/MT next year - RAM  by afiq isa 25 November 2015

DuPont, Dow Chemical Agree to Merge, Then Break Up Into Three Companies  - Deal forms more than $120 billion chemical, agricultural giant amid weakening commodity prices By Jacob Bunge, David Benoit and Chelsey Dulaney Dec. 11, 2015

Dow's Survivor CEO Liveris Closes on Most Elusive Deal of All December 12, 2015

DuPont and Dow Talks Put Spotlight on Agricultural Industry - Deal could spur rivals in seeds-and-pesticides to look at combinations of their own  By  Jacob Bunge and  Eyk Henning   Dec. 10, 2015 The potential merger of DuPont Co. and Dow Chemical Co. could spur agricultural rivals to forge their own partnerships, further shrinking the handful of companies that dominate the global seed and pesticide business.

Malaysia palm oil - India's demand spurt sparks hopes of firmer pricing KUALA LUMPUR (NewsRise) November 16, 2015  -- A spurt in demand from India may help firm prices of palm oil, even as Malaysia's stockpile climbed to a fresh record high in October and shipments to other top importers slipped. Imports to India surged 59% in October from a year earlier and 24% month-on-month, according to Malaysian Palm Oil Board's latest data, ahead of peak demand during the Hindu festival of lights, or Diwali. The robust demand from India--the world's largest consumer and importer of palm oil--comes at a time when the commodity faces supply glut and lacklustre demand from other major markets such as China and Pakistan.

Market regulation in China - Securities watchdog turns eye to commodities by DAISUKE HARASHIMA, Nikkei staff writer November 9, 2015     The move comes as investors shift their money to commodities in response to new restrictions on stock trading following the swoon in share prices this summer. The China Securities Regulatory Commission in September asked the three major commodities exchanges -- the Dalian Commodity Exchange, the Shanghai Futures Exchange and the Zhengzhou Commodity Exchange -- to come up with rules to regulate program trading. Program trading is computer-driven, automated trading that seeks to exploit minute price fluctuations. The CSRC ordered 164 individual futures investors to stop trading for a month at the end of August, including 152 who had engaged in "abnormal" numbers of trades in excess of 600 times per day.  The commission concluded these trades had the potential to cause wild fluctuations in prices....     The move comes as investors shift their money to commodities in response to new restrictions on stock trading following the swoon in share prices this summer. The China Securities Regulatory Commission in September asked the three major commodities exchanges -- the Dalian Commodity Exchange, the Shanghai Futures Exchange and the Zhengzhou Commodity Exchange -- to come up with rules to regulate program trading. Program trading is computer-driven, automated trading that seeks to exploit minute price fluctuations.
Hitting the brakes. The CSRC ordered 164 individual futures investors to stop trading for a month at the end of August, including 152 who had engaged in "abnormal" numbers of trades in excess of 600 times per day.  The commission concluded these trades had the potential to cause wild fluctuations in prices.


7 December 2015: Palm oil hits 4-wk high on concerns over lower output, Malaysia's November palm stocks seen growing slightly from 15-year high record, BMD RM2,367 / $560

Reuters - PREVIEW-Malaysia's November palm stocks seen growing slightly from 15-year high record
06-Dec-2015 * Nov palm stocks seen up 0.1 pct m/m at 2.84 mln T * Output seen falling 11.9 pct to 1.80 mln T * Exports seen down 9.2 pct at 1.56 mln T * Malaysian Palm Oil Board data due Dec 10 after 0430 GMT
Reuters - VEGOILS-Palm oil hits 4-wk high on concerns over lower output By Naveen Thukral 04-DEC-2015 06:15:13 PM .Palm oil up for 2nd day, hits highest since Nov. 9 .El Nino seen reducing Southeast Asia's palm oil output

CPO Productivity Expected to Rise Next Year 27 November, 2015 TEMPO.CO, Nusa Dua - The Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association (Gapki) predicted that CPO production in 2016 would be somewhere between 33 million and 35 million tons comprising 22 million tons for exports and 13 million tons for domestic consumption.Gapki director executive Fadhil Hasan said that CPO prices next year would be around US$580-US$600 per ton. According to Fadhil, the CPO prices have been affected by the implementation of biodiesel mandatory program, drought, crude oil prices and the establishment of the Council of Palm Oil Producing Countries (CPOPC).   “El Nino and forest fires have reduced CPO productivity by 3-5 percent,” Fadhil said when speaking at the 9thIndonesian Palm Oil Conference (IPOC) in Bali on Friday, November 27, 2015.

30 November 2015: Palm oil hits 2-1/2 week high as monsoon season seen curbing output... Biodiesel mandate, El Nino to boost palm oil prices in 2016  - James Fry - Reuters   BMD RM2,361 / US$555


VEGOILS-Palm oil hits 2-1/2 week high as monsoon season seen curbing output 27-NOV-2015  By Michael Taylor .Palm prices touch 2,374 ringgit per tonne, highest since Nov. 9 .Wet season in Indonesia, Malaysia to hurt production .Bali palm gathering offers price outlook....

Biodiesel mandate, El Nino to boost palm oil prices in 2016 -analyst Fry By Emily Chow.  * Palm oil prices could rise to $650-$675 by H1 2016  * Prices could rise further to $800 if El Nino hits output  * Indonesian, Malaysian output seen down on full El Nino impact... BALI, Indonesia, Nov 27 (Reuters) - Crude palm oil (CPO) prices could rise to $650-$675 per tonne by mid-2016 as top producer Indonesia uses more palm-based biodiesel, and climb higher to $800 if El Nino hits output, leading industry analyst James Fry said on Friday...

26 November 2015: James Fry says limited downside risk to his palm oil predictions


B10 Mandate Not 'Wildly Ambitious' by Global Standards: LMC, by Bloomberg TV Malaysia, Published on Nov 22, 2015 -  November 20, 2015 (Kuala Lumpur) -- LMC International chairman James Fry says implementing the B10 mandate in Malaysia requires agreement from auto manufacturers. The agribusiness expert also discusses why there is limited downside risk to his palm oil predictions with Bloomberg TV Malaysia's


24 November 2015: Palm oil Nov inventories forecast to stay high BMD RM2284/US$531, commodities reach 2002 bottom but lift on Saudi oil hopes, Argentina hope for output increase, salmon and orange woes, China worries

Reuters - VEGOILS-Palm oil falls on high stocks, slow export demand 23-NOV-2015 06:22:57 PM By Emily Chow *Palm falls for a third consecutive session *End-November inventories forecast to stay at current high levels. BMD RM 2,284 / US$531

Dollar hovers near eight-month peak, buoyed by Fed policy expectations By Shinichi Saoshiro Nov 23, 2015

Commodities strike 2002 bottom; end off low on oil Nov 23, 2015 NEW YORK | BY BARANI KRISHNAN

Argentina in for a radical post-election grains output increase Nov 23, 2015  BUENOS AIRES | BY HUGH BRONSTEIN

Chile Salmon Farmers Want Government Intervention to End the Boom-to-Bust Cycle by Javiera Quiroga and James Attwood November 24, 2015

Florida's Orange Industry Is in Its Worst Slump in 100 Years by Marvin G Perez November 24, 2015

Bank of America: The 'Great Divorce' Between the World's Two Largest Economies Will Drive Currency and Rates Markets in 2016 - The "marriage of convenience" is over. by Luke Kawa November 24, 2015

A Hard Landing in China Could 'Shake the World' "A slowing China redistributes global economic activity through the commodity channel as much as dampening it"  by Malcolm Scott  November 20, 2015


13 November 2015: Malaysia stocks have broken new records, higher than expected production, oil price tumbled; BMD RM 2,333 / $535

Reuters - Malaysia CPO-Market factors to watch Nov 13 13-NOV-2015 *Malaysian palm oil futures rose slightly on Thursday as industry data showing declining production lent support *Oil prices tumbled almost 4 percent on Thursday, accelerating a slump that threatens to test new six-and-a-half year lows, with traders unnerved by a persistent rise in U.S. stockpiles and a downbeat forecast for next year.

LMC Oils Price View - 12 Nov 2015 (just released)... Malaysian palm oil stocks have broken new records, but this is the calm before the storm. Today, with tanks full and rivers too shallow for barges in places, distress selling affects the CPO market. Yet, CPO remains at a premium over Brent. All eyes are on the delayed impact of local droughts this year, as lower fertiliser use compounds pressure on yields……

Zeti Says Ringgit Significantly Undervalued Amid Growth by Alaa Shahine November 11, 2015

VEGOILS-Palm oil falls on unexpected rise in production, stronger ringgit By Emily Chow Nov 11 (Reuters)  *Palm oil resumes downtrend after last session's rise *Market reacts on higher than expected production


6 November 2015: Reuters - Palm oil eases on ample supplies as Pertamina rally fizzles BMD RM2345/$546 

VEGOILS-Palm oil eases on ample supplies as Pertamina rally fizzles By Emily Chow 05-NOV-2015 07:09:47 PM *Palm falls 0.6 pct on profit taking ahead of Diwali *Market will only be firmer supported by consumer demand from China and India -traders 

6 November 2015: Indonesia energy ministry announces biodiesel quota winners and B20 diesel ready to enter market next year

2 November 2015: El Nino to strike harder, but palm oil price not seen to soar

El Nino to strike harder, but palm oil price not seen to soar by yap leng kuen 2 November 2015; THE strongest El Nino in decades is expected to mess up everything – people, birds, crops, fish – and for Malaysia, a major impact will be reduction in palm oil output which will drive prices higher. However, this time round, crude palm oil (CPO) price may be on a mild uptrend as demand expectation may limit the upside, said Danny Wong, CEO, Areca Capital, adding that the previous round of El Nino had pushed the CPO price to as high as RM3,000 per tonne. “Unless the CPO price goes above RM2,600 per tonne, winners will likely be limited to those that manage costs well as these are rising too especially labour costs,” said Wong who cautioned that if CPO price hit high, there could be a windfall tax in view of Federal budget constraints. For more diversified exposure, Wong prefers Genting Plantations and Ta Ann. Vincent Khoo, head of research, UOBKayhian, is positive of CPO price recovering further in 2016. In the event of a strong El Nino, the best beta plays are IOI Corp and IJM Plantations while Genting Plantations and Sarawak Oil Palms have the highest upside although based on the current CPO price of above RM2,300 per tonne, some have hit their target prices. Meanwhile, another stock that could be positively impacted by El Nino could be QL Resources, said Khoo. “Plantation stocks should rally closer to year-end as El Nino is still strong although the outlook for November is still uncertain,’’ said Chris Eng, head of research, Etiqa Insurance & Takaful. El Nino is back and in a big way, said Bloomberg.


29 October 2015: Rains arrive and haze abates, Reuters - palm oil trading range-bound,  BMD RM2,343 ($549.36)

VEGOILS-Palm oil up on weak ringgit, trading range-bound 28-OCT-2015 06:23:29 PM *Palm oil rises on a weaker ringgit *Market still trading within range on other bearish market factors. BMD RM2,343 ($549.36)

Rain in Indonesia Dampens Forest Fires That Spread Toxic Haze By JOE COCHRANEOCT. 28, 2015; Torrential rains overnight on Tuesday in the regions of Sumatra and Kalimantan — where forest fires have been raging for weeks, sickening hundreds of thousands of people — have significantly reduced the size and number of fires, said Luhut B. Pandjaitan, Indonesia’s coordinating minister for political, legal and security affairs. “I hope we have turned the corner,” he said in an interview. “If the rain continues over the next five days, we are past this.”...He said the number of “hot spots,” areas where satellite imagery shows heavy forest fires, had dropped to 291 on Wednesday from 1,578 on Monday because of the heavy rains...Seventeen Indonesian civilians have died from respiratory illnesses caused by the haze, as well as one firefighter in an operational accident, Mr. Luhut said....

Widespread shower activities in the region have helped to subdue the land fires in Kalimantan. However, some smoke haze was still observed in parts of Sumatra. Updated 7:46 PM 29 Oct


19 October 2015: Reuters Malaysian palm oil falls on bearish exports, BMD RM2305/$553 

VEGOILS-Malaysian palm oil falls on bearish exports 16-OCT-2015 06:59:28 PM By Emily Chow *Exchange rate, demand from traditional mkts key -trader *Export and production outlook bearish. KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 16 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures fell in late trade on Friday, although largely remaining rangebound, tracking a volatile ringgit and depressed by a bearish export outlook.... BMD RM2,305/$553 a tonne

Editor's note: Here's a more comprehensive look at the last one month's of headlines for this topic.

A new business model for palm oil? The recent haze in Southeast Asia has sparked renewed calls for alternatives to palm oil products. In this interview, Forum for the Future founder Jonathon Porritt tells Eco-Business why the industry - which is also provides thousands of livelihoods worldwide - needs a new business model, not boycotts.  By Vaidehi Shah Friday 16 October 2015

Hit companies where it hurts by Henry Barlow Oct 1, 2015, 5:58 pm SGT The contributors to the haze appear not primarily to be the larger oil palm plantation operators but relatively small estates, owning perhaps only one or two mills, or independent mills depending largely, if not exclusively, on fruit submitted from smallholders. Many such operators and smallholders have no wish to comply with sustainability principles. Could the Monetary Authority of Singapore instruct banks operating in Singapore not to extend financing and trading facilities to companies linked to mill owners who are not in compliance with agreed sustainability principles as required by the Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO) or Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) standards? These companies should also be required to provide independently certified reports that they have assisted all mill owners and smallholders submitting fruit to their mills in complying with the sustainability principles of ISPO or RSPO. Other central banks in he region could also adopt similar measures.

Why Sustainable Palm Oil Is Possible by The Nature Conservancy Posted: 10/14/2015 2:36 pm EDT   Updated: 10/14/2015 2:59 pm EDT

Can REDD save Indonesia’s peatlands from burning?   By Chris Lang 14 October 2015

Mid-to-long-term CPO price outlook improving — Analysts October 12, 2015, Monday KUCHING: The mid-to-long-term crude palm oil (CPO) price has been viewed as improving as on-going droughts and less fertilisation activity will likely lead to the decline in production early next year and subsequently, the decline of supply. Kenanga Investment Bank Bhd’s research arm (Kenanga Research) said in a report following the MPOB International Palm Oil Congress and Exhibition 2015 (PIPOC2015) in Kuala Lumpur, “According to speaker Dr James Fry (chairman, LMC International), CPO prices are likely to be on an uptrend, potentially reaching US$600 per metric tonne (circa RM2,540 per metric tonne) by end of the first quarter of 2016 (1Q16). “This is excluding potential El Nino impact, as on-going droughts and less fertilisation activity will lead to declining production early next year and therefore tightens supply. “While we agree that 1Q16 is likely to see stronger CPO prices due to the above reasons, we think prices are likely to decline later in the year on seasonal production trends and ample supply of competing soybean oil (SBO), to average RM2,400 per metric tonne (MT) for the full-year,” the research team said. During his talk, Dr Fry also stressed the importance of mandated biodiesel production to support CPO prices going forward. Read more:

Inventory rises to record high in September KUALA LUMPUR (NewsRise) -- Palm oil inventory in Malaysia rose to a lifetime-high in September, suggesting that the government's recent efforts to cut stockpile and lift prices has yielded little result so far. Major plantation stocks were subdued as mounting stockpile clouded their earnings prospects for the three months to September 30. Still, slower production growth of palm oil in September from the previous month sparked hopes of a cut in inventory going ahead, even as Southeast Asia's third largest economy plans to partner larger neighbour Indonesia to form an OPEC style body to control prices. Palm oil inventories rose 5% month-on-month and 26% year-on-year to swell to 2.63 million tons in September while output totalled 1.96 million metric tons compared to record 2.05 million tons in August, according to data from the Malaysian Palm Oil Board. Oil palm trees' peak yield season ranges from July to October. Last week, Malaysia's Commodities Minister Douglas Uggah Embas called for efforts to limit palm oil inventories at around 2 million tons....

VEGOILS-Malaysian palm oil sees 3 pct gain on short covering, China buying talk Tue Oct 13, 2015 11:10am GMT * Palm oil up by nearly 3 pct in late trade     * Sudden hike due to traders' short covering

India palm oil demand up on festivals Tuesday, 13 October 2015…

Palm oil imports up 12.20% in September on lower prices: Solvent Extractors' Association By PTI | 14 Oct, 2015, 04.58PM IST…

CPO export volume may surpass target this year: Industry group Khoirul Amin, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Thu, October 15 2015, 5:35 AM - See more at:

Indonesia Sept palm oil little-changed, exports rise -Reuters survey Fri Oct 16, 2015 5:26am EDT  * Indonesia's CPO output seen at 3.1 million tonnes in Sept    * CPO exports seen up 19 percent m/m

Govt regrets KL decision to halt RI palm oil imports Khoirul Amin, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Fri, October 09 2015, 5:17 PM; The Indonesian government expressed its regret on Thursday over a Malaysian palm oil group’s decision to temporarily halt imports of palm oil from Indonesia, saying the move was against the spirit of free trade.Gusmardi Bustami, who is chairman of an Indonesian trade policy forum and a former senior official at the Trade Ministry, said that the measure imposed by the Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) was not in line with the spirit of the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) and the World Trade Organization (WTO). “It is also suspected that Malaysia is trying to prevent its processed goods made of imported Indonesian CPO from being banned from entering into various export destinations due to speculations that the CPO producers might be involved in forest fires [in Indonesia],” he told the Post on Thursday.The plan to halt Indonesia’s palm oil imports was contained in a circular issued by the MPOB late last month. The group said that the decision was made because of oversupply, but it did not state how long suspended imports would be maintained. - See more at:

Mier lauds move to set up palm oil council, on urgency of price stabilising mechanism   By Chester Tay / The Edge Financial Daily   | October 15, 2015 : 10:19 AM MYT; KUALA LUMPUR: The setting up of the intergovernmental Council of Palm Oil Producing Countries (CPOPC) to regulate the edible oil’s production, stocks, and market prices is a step in the right direction, according to the Malaysian Institute of Economic Research (Mier). This is because there is an urgency for both Malaysia and Indonesia to introduce a price stabilising mechanism for crude palm oil (CPO), said the research institution’s deputy director Dr Ahmad Fauzi Puasa in an interview with The Edge Financial Daily last week. “Malaysia and Indonesia need to have a round-table talk to figure out a way to implement this price stabilising mechanism, before it (CPO price) gets even more volatile,” Ahmad Fauzi said. Earlier this month, both countries agreed to spearhead the establishment of the CPOPC. The idea was formally agreed on between Prime Min ster Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Indonesian President Joko Widodo during a meeting at the Presidential Palace in Bogor on Sunday. “The formation of the CPOPC is the biggest achievement in the bilateral relations between Malaysia and Indonesia, and will bring greater benefit to the wider palm oil industry,” Najib said on his Twitter account on Tuesday. The two nations collectively account for 85% of global palm oil production.

Indonesia to Stop Complying with European Union's Palm Oil Standards  12 October 2015 The Indonesian government will (temporarily) stop using sustainability standards designed by the European Union regarding crude palm oil (CPO). Indonesian Minister of Maritime Affairs Rizal Ramli said the current strict standards of the European Union hurt the domestic palm oil industry, especially smallholders. Moreover, Indonesia and Malaysia, the world's two largest CPO producers and exporters, are to set up a new intergovernmental palm oil council that will design new rules and standards regarding sustainable palm oil production....Last week it was announced that Indonesia and Malaysia agreed to set up the new palm oil council (called the Council of Palm Oil Producer Countries). This council aims to control the global palm oil supply, stabilize CPO prices and promote sustainable practices in the palm oil industry, partly by harmonizing existing standards of Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO) and Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil (MSPO). Indonesia and Malaysia account for about 85 percent of the world's CPO output. Rizal is confident that demand for Indonesian CPO will not decline due to the moratorium on applying the European Union's palm oil standards. The Indonesian government will lobby the governments of China and India to use the palm oil standards that are to be developed by the Council of Palm Oil Producer Countries (CPOP)....

El Nino to cut global palm oil output in 2016: Felda CEO By Reuters | 9 Oct, 2015, 03.43PM IST

Drought to lift India's palm oil imports to record-veteran trader Mon Sep 28, 2015 8:00am EDT MUMBAI, Sept 28  |  By Rajendra Jadhav

Credit quality of Asian palm oil players weakens, says Moody’s Thursday, 8 October 2015; PETALING JAYA: The credit quality of Asian palm oil producers is weakening, as oversupply is muting crude palm oil (CPO) prices and hampering deleveraging efforts, said Moody’s Investors Service. The average CPO price fell more than 30% to RM2,191 per tonne in the second quarter of this year from the second quarter of 2012 and averaged RM2,067 per tonne in July-August. “We expect CPO prices to remain under pressure over the next 18 months, with vegetable oil markets oversupplied and soft demand,” said Alan Greene, Moody’s vice-president, senior credit officer and a lead analyst on Asian palm oil producers. He said in Moody’s latest edition of Inside ASEAN that lower prices had muted cash generation, reflected in the recent negative rating actions on palm oil companies Golden Agri-Resources Ltd (Ba3 negative), Sime Darby Bhd (A3 negative) and IOI Corp Bhd (Baa2 negative). Inside ASEAN also examined the impact of the recent currency depreciation of the Malaysian (A3 positive) ringgit and Indonesian (Baa3 stable) rupiah. The ringgit depreciation was a symptom of declining export revenues, capital outflows and worsening sentiment towards Malaysia.

M'sia to maintain palm oil stock at 2m tonnes: Uggah Published on: Wednesday, October 07, 2015; Kuala Lumpur: Malaysia hopes to maintain palm oil stocks at about two million tonnes from the 2.49 million tonnes recorded as at end-August by implementing replanting incentives and minimising imports. Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said the replanting incentives, to be implemented on Oct 1, aims to reduce by 83,000 hectares, the area planted with oil palm and drop production by 250,000 tonnes. "We will also minimise palm oil imports until our stocks reach about two million tonnes. This is a temporary measure and tere is no timeline for the target. "To strengthen long-term palm oil prices, Malaysia and Indonesia, which together account for 85 per cent of global production, will also implement a higher biodiesel blend programme," he said. He said this at a press conference after officiating the International Palm Oil Congress and Exhibition (PIPOC) 2015 here Tuesday. He said the three measures were put in place to curb the production level from going higher as some parties are projecting it to reach three million tonnes by November. His ministry, he added, was committed to managing the stocks level as Malaysian statistics have been accepted as one of the main data to indicate crude palm oil (CPO) supply globally. On the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiation in Atlanta on Monday, he said while yet to be passed by Parliament, it would create easier access for CPO exports in other markets and give more remunerative prices…. Meanwhile, when asked if declining CPO demand from China would affect the local sector, Malaysian Palm Oil Council chairman Datuk Lee Yeow Chor said imports from India would help sustain Malaysia's palm oil exports volume….

China eyes oil markets shake-up with new crude futures contract Published: 4 October 2015 1:26 PM; China is seeking to assert its growing influence on global oil markets with a yuan-denominated crude futures contract expected to be launched this year. At the same time, analysts warn that the second-largest oil consumer after the United States will struggle to compete with more established benchmarks such as London's Brent North Sea crude and New York's WTI.  "China is the world's largest oil importer and is going to become the largest oil consumer in the future, so it makes sense for the country to be the place for an oil futures (contract) in Asia," Lin Boqiang, director of the Energy Economics Research Centre at Xiamen University, told AFP.  China's consumption will exceed that of the United States by 2034, according to the US Energy Information Administration - See more at:

Palm Oil Seen Extending Climb on Ringgit Weakness, Mistry Says  by  Anuradha Raghu September 30, 2015 — 3:30 PM HKT Lagging biodiesel targets may cast shadow on edible oil prices. Soyoil seen as the most competitive, `must own' oil of 2016.

Malaysia to develop drought-resistance oil palm breed October 6, 2015, Tuesday; KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will be developing its own drought-resistance breed of oil palm that could withstand several seasons of dry spell, including El Nino within 10 years. International Society for Oil Palm Breeders (ISOPB) President Dr Ahmad Kushairi said no efforts were made to produce a drought-resistance breed in Malaysia before as the climate then did not warrant such development. “There are currently initiatives in developing drought-resistance breeds in other parts of the world. In Malaysia, it (developing process) is only at the initial stage (of development) at the moment. “We have just started looking into the genetic material (of the development),” he told reporters at the International Seminar on Gearing Oil Palm Breeding and Agronomy for Climate Change here yesterday Read more:

Oil palm competes with arecanut, rubber in Karnataka  AJ Vinayak; Recently in Shivamogga/Chikmagalur:    “It is a crop from which I get a salary every month,” says GN Ratnakara, an oil palm grower in Badagabail village of NR Pura taluka in Chikmagalur district. Of the 16 acres he owns, Ratnakara has planted oil palm on about five acres. Diversification into oil palm has borne fruits for Ratnakara, who now annually harvests around 30-40 tonnes of fresh fruit bunches (FFBs) from each hectare that earns him an income of around ₹3 lakh. “Oil palm was planted as an inter-crop to prevent the fall of arecanut trees from wind. Now, oil palm is the better crop for me,” says Gopalakrishna Udupa, a farmer in neighbouring Shivamogga.

Palm oil rally on El Nino bucks resource rout Friday, 2 October 2015

Hike duty differential on crude, refined palm oils: Ruchi  Soya By PTI | 30 Sep, 2015, 08.54PM IST

Agriculture stocks 'may enjoy cyclical upturn' Oct 9, 2015, 5:00 am SGT Agricultural equities could be on the cusp of a recovery as firms experience a "cyclical improvement" in the coming months, according to a report yesterday. The palm oil and sugar segments, in particular, are expected to deliver a "modest outperformance", according to BMI Research, a subsidiary of financial information provider Fitch Group.

Palm oil imports up 12.20% in September on lower prices: Solvent Extractors' Association by PTI | 14 Oct, 2015, 04.58PM IST; .....The country's total vegetable oil imports increased by 16 per cent to 12,16,546 tonnes in September this year from 10,47,620 tonnes in the year-ago period.  Last month, the government had hiked import duty on crude edible oil from 7.5 per cent to 12.5 per cent and refined edible oil from 15 per cent to 20 per cent in a bid to protect farmers' interest and provide a level-playing field to domestic oilseed processors.  The impact of duty hike is yet to be seen in the cu ..

From Bear to Bull, Palm Rally on El Nino Bucks Resource Rout  by Anuradha Raghu and Swansy Afonso  October 1, 2015 — 2:03 PM HKTUpdated on October 1, 2015 — 7:31 PM HKT Jump boosts producers' shares as resource rivals slump. Commodities mired in slowing China falter near 16-year-low

A perennial deficit: The other oil problem - Unlike petroleum, India’s edible oil imports are showing no signs of cooling. Written by Harish Damodaran |   Updated: September 24, 2015 4:06 am ...

Navi Mumbai: Dummy buyers account for 75% of palm oil at JNPT By Sharad Vyas |Posted 22-Sep-2015...State investigative authorities have detected a multi-crore tax evasion racket in the import of edible oil. This is one of the biggest scandals in recent times with the Economic Offences Wing (EOW), Mumbai Police, and Sales Tax Department carrying out a joint investigation for the first time in a tax evasion case. - See more at:

El Nino might cause Indonesian palm oil production to drop by a quarter in 2016: Golden Agri's Franky Widjaja   By Chan Chao Peh /   | September 30, 2015 : 12:47 PM MYT

RI turns to West Africa to boost exports Khoirul Amin, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Sat, September 26 2015, 5:25 PM;... The country is expanding its markets to several African countries to offset the decline in demand from its main export destinations, especially the US, Europe and China.Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association (Gapki) executive director Fadhil Hasan said on Friday that local palm oil producers were expanding their markets to West African countries, where demand for crude palm oil (CPO) was on the rise on the back of growing economies and relatively stable politics. “Our CPO exports to Africa, especially West Africa, has been surging and it is even close to that of China this year,” he told The Jakarta Post.According to Fadhil, total CPO exports to Africa reached 1.3 million tons in the first seven months of this year, already close to the 1.7 million tons exported in 2014.Exports to China, meanwhile, declined to 1.9 million tons in the January-July period of this year from around 2 million tons during the same period last year.In terms of value, the country’s CPO exports to West Africa hit US$416.2 million in the January-July period of this year, with CPO exports to China standing at US$1.09 billion during the same period or a 9 percent year-on-year (yoy) drop, according to data from the Agriculture Ministry. - See more at:

MPOB incentive scheme, 26 September 2015  KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) will implement a RM100mil palm oil replanting incentive scheme beginning Oct 1, 2015. Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Seri Douglas Amar Uggah Embas said the scheme targeted the replanting of 83,000 ha of unproductive and old palms.  “This scheme is open from Oct 1, 2015 until Dec 31, 2015 for approved applicants to fell unproductive and old palms,” he said in a statement issued by the ministry.  The statement added that the approval for the scheme was based on first-come-first-serve basis with an incentive allocation of RM1,500 per ha for an approved area of 33,000 ha in the first phase.

Re-planting requires buy-in of smallholders, say analysts by P Prem Kumar & Alexander Winifred Tuesday, September 29, 2015 Analysts have expressed doubt that the government’s RM100 million Oil Palm Replanting Scheme Incentive (SITS) 2015 can help support stronger crude palm oil (CPO) price as the current CPO price of RM2,390 a tonne might sway planters to keep their mature palms rather than fell them. While not disputing the move to replant some 83,000ha under the scheme will help reduce CPO stock levels and hence be price supportive, the government needs to get the buy-in of small landholders to make the scheme a success, said industry watchers. “The government will need to act and ensure (unproductive trees) yielding below 17 tonnes of fresh fruit bunches per hectare are replanted. It will have to practically hold their hands to do it (the replanting),” said MR Chandran, a founding member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil and the first CEO of the Malaysia Palm Oil Association.

India Increases Duty on Cooking Oils to Stem Cheap Imports  by Thomas Kutty Abraham  and Anuradha Raghu Updated on September 18, 2015 — 7:23 PM HKT Tax increase comes after imports surge 23% since November. Fresh levy seen not enough to curb flood of refined oils September 18, 2015 — 4:53 PM HKT High US dollar a blessing in disguise for palm oil exporters By: HANIM ADNAN Saturday, 19 September 2015

FAO Food Price Index for August saw sharpest drop since 2008;  September 15, 2015; The FAO Food Price Index averaged 155.7 points in August 2015, down 8.5 points (5.2 percent) from July, the sharpest monthly drop since December 2008. In addition to ample supplies, a number of other factors contributed to the decrease, including the slump in energy prices and concerns about China’s economic slowdown and its negative consequences on the global economy and financial markets.  The decline affected all the commodities tracked by the index, except for meat, the prices of which remained generally steady.

Oilseed farmers fighting a losing battle September 13,2015, 04.42 AM  IST | | THE HANS INDIA; Imports of edible oils – around 70 per cent of total demand – have depressed the demand for domestically-produced edible oils. Domestic market is awash with cheap rival palm oil, leaving producers and crushers struggling.  The farmers have lost interest in raising the oilseed crops because of lack of support from both the Central and State governments. The promises made by the Centre that it would expand the area under cultivation of oil palm through the National Mission on Oilseeds and Oil Palm (NMOOP) remains unfulfilled.

16 October 2015: Reuters - Malaysian palm oil falls on stronger ringgit, BMD RM2287/US$555; Malaysia reserves YTD US$22.7 billion or almost a fifth and Indonesia lost US10 billion / 9% this year

VEGOILS-Malaysian palm oil falls on stronger ringgit, tracks currency volatility By Emily Chow 15-OCT-2015 06:43:02 PM *Palm oil drops 1.4 percent on strengthening ringgit *Currency volatility overrides other market influences KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 15 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures fell on Thursday, partly reversing steep gains in the previous session, as the market tracked the volatile ringgit. The benchmark December palm oil contract 1FCPOc3 on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange lost 1.4 percent at the end of the trading day to reach 2,287 ringgit ($555.10) a tonne.

Malaysia’s reserves down by US$22.7b, among sharpest drops worldwide Friday October 16, 2015; LONDON, Oct 16 — Mexico, Indonesia and Malaysia saw some of the sharpest falls in central bank reserves over the past quarter as investor flight from emerging markets forced policymakers to defend their currencies. The issue has drawn particular attention after Chinese reserves, the world’s biggest, fell by a record US$180 billion (RM739.809 billion) in the third quarter due to interventions to support the yuan after a mid-August devaluation....Mexican and Malaysian reserves fell by over US$12 billion between July and end-September, while Indonesia and South Korea lost US$6.3 billion and US$6.9 billion respectively, though some losses were down to euro-dollar exchange rate effects. Malaysian reserves are down by US$22.7 billion or almost a fifth this year, and Indonesia has lost US$10 billion or 9 per cent. “You are seeing net FX reserves depletion even when you strip out valuation effects,” said UBS strategist Manik Narain, adding that pressure in the past three months had been the most acute since 2009, taking reserves to mid-2013 levels. - See more at:

7 October 2015: Malaysia wants to control the import volume of palm oil from Indonesia instead of an outright ban

Malaysia to ‘minimise’ Indonesian palm oil imports, no outright ban - minister    By Chester Tay /   | October 6, 2015 : 2:21 PM MYT      KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 6): Malaysia plans to limit Indonesian palm oil imports in a move to curb rising domestic inventory. Malaysia's Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said the country intended to control the import volume of palm oil from Indonesia instead of an outright ban. "If we don't do anything now, it is expected that palm oil inventory would exceed 3 million tonnes by November. And I would not use the word 'ban', we are just minimising the import volume.

Malaysia looks to maintain palm oil stocks at 2m tonnes: Unggah  6 October 2015 @ 12:46 PM;  KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia hopes to maintain palm oil stocks at about two million tonnes from the 2.49 million tonnes recorded as at end-Sept by implementing replanting incentives and minimising imports. Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said the replanting incentives, to be implemented on Oct 1, aims to reduce by 83,000 hectares, the area planed with oil palm and drop production by 250,000 tonnes. “We will also minimise palm oil exports until our stocks reach about two million tonnes. This is a temporary measure and we do not have a timeline for the target.

1 October 2015: Reuters - palm oil profit taking ahead of China holiday

Reuters - VEGOILS-Palm oil eases on export data, profit-taking ahead of China holiday 30-SEP-2015 06:29:58 PM By Michael Taylor *Data pulls prices lower; recent palm gains overdone *El Nino production impact largely factored into prices *Chinese holidays likely to hurt near-term demand.... BMD close -3.1 percent RM2,374/$540

29 September 2015: Dr James Fry sees CPO surging 40% to US$700 by mid-2016 on El Nino and Indonesia biodiesel mandate; palm oil at 15 month high, BMD RM2450/$550

Palm oil prices seen up 40 per cent by mid-2016 on El Nino: analyst Fry  Sep 29, 20151:12 PM [MUMBAI] Crude palm oil (CPO) prices are likely to surge 40 per cent to US$700 per tonne by mid-2016 as an El Nino weather event dents output and as top producer Indonesia uses more palm-based biodiesel, leading industry analyst James Fry said.


Reuters - VEGOILS-Palm oil reverses losses to hit new 15-month high 29-SEP-2015 07:27:40 PM By Fergus Jensen; JAKARTA, Sept 28 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures surged for a sixth day in a row to new 15-month highs on Tuesday, bolstered by bullish analyst forecasts, a weakening ringgit and expectations recent dry weather and haze will curb crop output. By Tuesday's close, the benchmark December palm oil contract 1FCPOc3 on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives (BMD) exchange was up 2.38 percent at 2,450 ringgit ($549.82) a tonne, after dipping to as low as 2,352 ringgit during the morning session. The benchmark touched 2,460 ringgit in the afternoon session, it's highest since June 2014. Traded volume stood at 72,597 lots of 25 tonnes each, roughly double the average 35,000 lots usually traded daily. "In the afternoon the spike came because of the news coming out of India," said a trader at a foreign commodities brokerage in Kuala Lumpur, referring to statements by leading analyst James Fry at an industry conference in Mumbai. "When someone like James Fry who has been very bearish on crude oil has suddenly turned bullish, people holding positions take note." Crude palm oil (CPO) prices are likely to surge 40 percent to $700 per tonne by mid-2016 as an El Nino weather event dents output and as top producer Indonesia uses more palm-based biodiesel, Fry said. Prices are also being propped up by the recent weakening of the ringgit, the trader said.....

28 September 2015: CNBC - How can you profit from SE Asia haze? US soybean trade deal with China. Malaysia replanting incentive.

El Nino dry weather to lead to rise in the palm oil price Monday, 28 September 2015  By: HANIM ADNAN

How you can trade Southeast Asia's haze by Nyshka Chandran Wednesday, 23 Sep 2015 | 9:57 PM ET; ....The price of palm oil has rallied 7 percent in the past fortnight as a cloak of smog, combined with unusually dry weather, disrupts supply in key Southeast Asian producing countries, and analysts say the gains are set to continue....

AmBank Research - Plantation Sector: US soybean price rose on the back of China trade deal. Last Friday, price of soybean for delivery in November 2015 rose by 2.4% from US$8.68/bushel to US$8.89 ¼ / bushel on the back of a trade deal signed between China and US. Under the memorandum of understanding, China will be buying 13.2mil tonnes of soybean worth US$5.3bil in the coming year from US. Last year, the trade deal involved purchases of 4.8mil tonnes of soybean worth US$2.3bil from China.

CIMB Research - Malaysia announces RM100m oil palm replanting incentive scheme. Malaysia to implement RM100m replanting incentive scheme to replant 83,000 ha of estates from 1 Oct to 31 Dec 2015. This could potentially reduce  CPO output by 250k tonnes in 2016 or 1.2% of 2014’s annual output and will be medium-term positive for CPO prices.  All Malaysian planters with old estates stand to benefit via lower replanting costs.



21 September 2015: India hikes import tax 5%, BMD RM2,104/$500

Reuters - VEGOILS-Palm oil loses ground on news of India's import tax hike 18-SEP-2015 06:41:53 PM  *Palm prices fall 1.1 percent  *Market downtrend as India raises import tax, KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 18 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures dropped on Friday as news of India's import tax hike on crude and refined vegetable oils dampened market sentiment. The benchmark December palm oil contract on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange was down 1.1 percent at the end of the trading day, closing at 2,104 ringgit ($500.24) a tonne.

CIMB - Regional plantations - India ups edible oil import duties 21 September 2015 - Duty on crude edible oil has been increased from 7.5% to 12.5% and on refined edible oil from 15% to 20%. This move is not entirely a surprise to us as the players have been lobbying for higher import duty on edible oils for some time. But the increase in duties was much lower than industry’s proposals. We view this as a slight plus for CPO producers due to the smaller than expected rise in import duties and neutral for Indian edible oil refiners.

 13 September 2015: India transfat limit in oils cut, India palm oil imports to hit record 10 million tonnes as 'producers dump', palm oil ban at Kerala ports upheld,  GAR sees 2016 at 27-28 mill tonnes. 

Editor's note - due to being away on travels lately news review has been a bit sparse, so this segment is a major review going back to 28 August.

Palm Oil Will Be Weak Short Term, Stronger Further Out  Sep. 9, 2015 9:32 AM ET; Summary. Slowing Indian palm oil demand will keep prices down. Increased soyoil production in China will also put downward pressure on prices.  Declining production in Indonesia and Malaysia will over time, be a positive price catalyst, as global demand rises.

Golden Agri-Resources sees Indonesia's 2016 palm oil output at 27-28 mln tonnes JAKARTA, Sept 4

On India

Transfat limit in oils cut by G.S. Mudur  New Delhi, Sept 2: India's food safety regulator has slashed the maximum allowed limit of transfats in cooking oil and fat by half to five per cent in a move that experts are calling an important step to safeguard public health. But nutrition scientists have cautioned that the government will also need to tweak oilseed crop policies to draw the food processing industry and consumers away from unhealthy but inexpensive transfats to healthier cooking oils. The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has set five per cent as the maximum limit for the amount of transfats in hydrogenated vegetable oils, margarine and fat spread from the current limit of 10 per cent. The new limit will be applicable from August 2016.

Palm oil imports to hit record 10 million tonnes as 'producers dump' at discount: Ruchi Soya Reuters Aug 27, 2015, 03.40PM IST SYDNEY: Overseas purchases of palm oil in the year starting November are set to rise nearly eight percent to a record 10 million tonnes as producers dump the tropical oil at steep discounts, key importer Ruchi Soya said on Thursday....
VSA cuts palm price hopes, citing big Indian stocks  15:36 UK, 4th Sept 2015, by  Palm oil prices are in for a "difficult" time over the rest of 2015 thanks to rich supplies in India, VSA Capital said. "A change in fundamentals is needed before the sector becomes attractive again," VSA warned. The investment bank cut its forecast for average 2015 crude palm oil prices for Rotterdam delivery to $625 a tonne, from a previous forecast of $700 a tonne.

India's Crop Failure to Keep Vegetable Oil Imports Near Record by  Isis Almeida September 8, 2015 — 9:30 PM HKT; Oil World sees Indian vegetable oil imports at 14 million tons. Dry weather means oilseed crop faces second year of failure

India edible oil producers fight losing battle against cheap palm oil imports By Rajendra Jadhav Thu Sep 3, 2015 5:00pm EDT  * Palm oil prices near 6-1/2 year lows, to spur more imports * Next year, India's palm oil imports seen up 7.5 percent * Oilseed crushing plants operating at 30 percent capacity

Supreme Court upholds Government of India Notification banning Import of Palm Oil through Kerala Ports By: Ashok KM |  August 23, 2015

India poised to drive a shift towards sustainable palm oil - Will India use its influence as the world's top importer of palm oil to push sustainability? Sarah Hucal reports...“There is no real ‘burning platform’ for companies to decide to move towards certification, especially for products aimed at the internal market,” Savi said, highlighting a main challenge for the RSPO in pushing forward certified sustainable palm oil....

On China

Malaysia - China to be top CPO buyer  Tuesday, 8 September 2015  By: DANIEL KHOO; Malaysia will soon export more palm oil to China than India. KUALA LUMPUR: China is expected to reclaim its top spot as an export destination for Malaysian palm oil from India on pricing and trade financing facilitation measures, said Malaysian Palm Oil Council chairman Datuk Lee Yeow Chor. He said that in the last few years, soybean oil had been cheap so China had imported more of that commodity compared to palm oil. However, he noted that exports of palm oil to China had grown in recent times due to the high discount of the commodity to its close rival soybean oil.

AM markets: ag futures extend recovery as China worries ease   09:55 GMT, Wednesday, 9th Sept 2015, by Mike Verdin; If there is one ag commodity that bulls wish they had bought a couple of weeks ago, it may be palm oil. OK, the real fireworks in financial markets on Wednesday were occurring in shares, with Tokyo stocks soaring 7.7%, and other Asian indices higher too.... The rally has been attributed to factors including reduced concerns over the Chinese economy, after the country's finance ministry overnighted said it would carry out "stronger proactive fiscal policy" to tackle headwinds to economic growth....

Food Prices Drop Most in 7 Years on Grain Glut, China Rout  by  Rudy Ruitenberg  September 10, 2015 — 6:21 PM HKTUpdated on September 10, 2015 — 11:56 PM HKT

Palm Oil Nears Bear Market as Chinese Demand Outlook Worsens by Anuradha Raghu August 25, 2015 — 4:26 PM HKTUpdated on August 25, 2015 — 6:58 PM HKT  Futures slump below 1,900 ringgit for first time since 2009. Prices hurt by rout in commodities, weak biodiesel demand

Commodities Slump to 16-Year Low on Mining, Oil Stocks  by Ranjeetha Pakiam and Rakteem Katakey August 24, 2015 — 10:10 AM HKTUpdated on August 25, 2015 — 5:04 AM HKT;  A measure of returns from commodities sank to its lowest since 1999 and shares in resource companies tumbled by the most since the financial crisis on concern that a slowing Chinese economy will exacerbate supply gluts.

10 September 2015: Aug stocks 2.49 mil tonnes up 16.5%, Kenanga Deutsche Futures sees support-resistance at 2080-2140, USDMYR 4.37, Indonesia & Malaysia to Form Joint Palm Oil Standards

Indonesia & Malaysia to Form Joint Palm Oil Standards

Kenanga Deutsche Futures, 10 Sep 2015 notes: Productions in Aug were up by 13%, larger-than-market expected as a result ending stock surged to 16.5% in Aug due to bumper yield during peak season of palm oil harvest. Meanwhile, exports increased much slower-than-expected of 0.3%, resulted from sluggish demand from major buyer China and India. Expect futures to trade on a cautious tone in the 2nd session due to bearish sets of data on production growth and higher stockpiles. However, positive ITS 1-10 day export numbers will provide cushion on the downside. Support and resistance are pegged at 2080 and 2140 respectively

USDMYR has been on weakening trend. Now around 4.37.
source: Google, 10 Sep 2015, accessed 1pm

7 September 2015: Maybank lowers CPO outlook RM2400-2600/tonne for 2015-2017, Gapki plays down China effect, Indonesia CPO fund disbursement to spur the industry

Maybank Research lowers CPO average selling price Wednesday, 2 September 2015  KUALA LUMPUR: Maybank Investment Bank (IB) Research has revised downwards its crude palm oil (CPO) average selling price (ASP) and maintained a “neutral” call on the plantations sector. “We  revise  down  our  2015/16/17  CPO ASP  forecasts  by -13/-8/-8% to  RM2,100, RM2,300, RM2,400 per tonne respectively (from RM2,400/2,500/2,600 per tonne).  For our US dollar forecasts, the revision was steeper at -19/-17/-16% incorporating a weaker ringgit of 3.80-3.90  (from 3.50). ttp://

Palm oil industry group plays down China effect Khoirul Amin, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Thu, September 03 2015, 5:15 PM; China’s economic slowdown has not affected our sales volume in any significant way,” said Gapki chairman Fadhil Hasan.Many palm oil exporters began sending out their crude palm oil (CPO) products to non-traditional markets such as Africa, the Middle East and Pakistan in recent years, he explained to The Jakarta Post recently.Citing data from the association, Fadhil said that demand for Indonesia’s CPO from China declined by only 5 percent to 1.9 million tons in the January-July period of this year, a drop from around 2 million tons in the same period of last year. This drop, however, was countered by exports to new and growing markets. CPO exports to the Middle East hit 1.25 million tons in the January-July period of this year, and is on course to hit last year’s export level of 2.3 million tons by the end of the year, according to the data. The data also revealed that CPO exports to Africa reached 1.3 million tons in the first seven months of this year, already close to the 1.7 million ton exported in 2014. - See more at:

Disbursement of CPO funds ready to spur industry The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Mon, September 07 2015, 5:40 PM; The Indonesian Oil Palm Estate Fund (BPDP) is preparing to disburse a crude palm oil (CPO) fund to give incentives to the domestic biodiesel industry and replant aging oil palms, as it has collected more than Rp 1 trillion (US$70.7 million) to date.The disbursement is approaching after state oil and gas firm Pertamina bought around 10,000 kiloliters (KL) of biodiesel from palm oil companies as of Aug. 31 for its new subsidized diesel B15, which has a mandatory 15 percent palm oil content to reduce fuel imports.BPDP president director Bayu Krisnamurthi said that the BPDP would pay a subsidy of Rp 2,700 per liter of biodiesel from the fund.“The funds we have collected are enough to fund the gap between the price in MOPS [Mean of Platts Singapore] and the biodiesel,” Bayu said on Friday.The CPO volume secured by Pertamina is part of the contract between the firm and petroleum and chemical distributor AKR Corporindo with palm oil producers to buy 339,000 KL of CPO from Aug. 17 to Oct. 31.For the rest of the year, the contract is targeted to secure 426,000 KL of CPO.Meanwhile, another BPDP executive, fund distribution director Dadan Kusdiana, said that the BPDP had collected more than Rp 1 trillion to date, which would partially be used for the subsidy. The body aimed to garner Rp 4.5 trillion this year. - See more at:

MPOC counters anti-palm oil propaganda in Paris Monday, 7 September 2015 By: DANIEL KHOO; KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) is launching a palm oil branding campaign in Paris on Monday in a move to balance the anti palm oil lobby in parts of Western Europe. Its chairman Datuk Lee Yeow Chor said on Monday that this was a necessary step as Europe was also an important and big market for palm oil products and exports.  "We will use both traditional and new media to do this. Athletes from Europe will also be our ambassadors who will help share nutritional benefits of palm oil," he said at a press conference here.  Officials at the MPOC said that other than the many nutritional benefits of palm oil, it's properties also include being one of the sole edible oils which is very stable at high temperatures, making it the choice oil for deep frying food....

 30 August 2015: Indonesia-Malaysia historic meeting on palm oil issues - to collaborate and coordinate strategies

Ministry hails positive outcome of palm oil Published on: Saturday, August 29, 2015 Kuala Lumpur: The Plantation Industries and Commodities Ministry welcomes the positive outcome of the meeting on Thursday between Malaysia and Indonesia on palm oil issues.  In a statement Friday, it said the historic meeting was the first time that the two major oil palm producers reached concrete understanding to collaborate and coordinate strategies on issues related to palm oil. "The ministry is confident the decisions taken will augur well for the palm oil industry during these challenging times, especially towards assisting the smallholders," it said. – Bernama;

25 August 2015: VEGOILS-Palm trades at nearly 6-1/2-year low on Chinese economic woes - Reuters

VEGOILS-Palm trades at nearly 6-1/2-year low on Chinese economic woes  24-Aug-2015 06:24:25 PM * Chinese woes dominate markets, weigh on palm * Further palm weakness expected in global sell-off * Palm touches 1,904 ringgit, lowest since March 2009.

22 August 2015: Indonesia New levy boosts exports of processed palm oils, Malaysia seeks strategies to boost palm oil price, Deere says lower crop prices are weakening the farm economy

Indonesia New levy boosts exports of processed palm oils The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Wed, August 19 2015, 3:55 PM;...Indonesia Oil Palm Estate Fund (BPDP) president director Bayu Krisnamurthi said in Jakarta on Tuesday that the export of processed palm oil products had increased sharply following the launch of new levy policy in July.According to agency data, refined, bleached and deodorized (RBD) crude palm oil and RBD palm olein accounted for 75 percent of total palm oil exports last month, while the share of CPO dropped to 25 percent from about 70 percent previously.....The new subsidized diesel, BI 15, officially launched by Pertamina Monday, has a 15 percent palm oil content, up from 10 percent.For the program, state-owned gas and oil firm Pertamina and petroleum and chemical distributor PT AKR Corporindo have secured contract with palm oil producers to buy 339,000 kiloliters (KL) of CPO from Aug. 17 until Oct. 31. This year, Pertamina plans to buy 765,000 KL of CPO this year for blending purpose and about 750,000 KL for non-subsidized diesel.With the current price, BPDP is required pay a subsidy of Rp 2,600 per liter of the subsidized biodiesel because its retail price is far below its market price. - See more at:

MPIC to introduce strategies to boost palm oil price August 21, 2015, Friday; BAGAN DATOH: The Ministry Of Plantation Industries and Commodities (MPIC) plans to introduce strategies in an effort to boost palm oil price.... Its minister, Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said the ministry would make suggestions to the government to extend the use of palm oil in industries to re-implement the replanting incentive. “We will submit a Cabinet paper on the matter in two weeks,” he told reporters after a working visit to United Plantations Bhd (UPB) at Jenderata Estate near here yesterday.
Read more:

Deere Cuts Full Year Profit Forecast As Farmers Reduce Spending - The world’s largest farm equipment maker says lower crop prices are weakening the farm economy; by Jack Kaskey and Shruti Singh August 21, 2015 — 7:07 PM HKTUpdated on August 21, 2015 — 9:54 PM HKT



13 August 2015: CPO drops below RM2000, soy and corn prices plunge, CNY 3-day drop, Ringgit falls through RM4 to USD, Malaysia starts banks limiting withdrawals? (checks show this is NOT TRUE)

2 year price chart,, accessed 9am, 13 August 2015

Ambank Plantation Sector: Soybean and corn prices plunged yesterday on bearish USDA report, 13 August 2015; USDA’s report is not positive for vegetable oil prices. We also believe that the decline in soybean prices could have been exacerbated by the devaluation of the Yuan.  In the palm oil space, CPO prices for September fell yesterday to RM1,986/tonne in line with falling soybean prices. Based on the latest prices, the discount between CPO and soybean oil is 23.1% or US$148/tonne compared with the five-year average of 14.4%. In the short-term, we think that CPO production and inventory would peak in either September or October 2015....

The ringgit, having fallen through the psychologically important RM4:US$1 barrier, is one of the globe’s worst performing currencies. The raid on the currency from global traders appears to be picking up speed, with the ringgit weakening to RM4.25 to the US dollar before the central bank used enough reserves to drive it back down to RM4:03. Banks have begun to limit retail withdrawals to RM3,000 and currency traders say there is a shortage of foreign currencies as people seek safer havens in the dollar.... Malaysia’s Mahathir & Razaleigh Teaming Up to Sink Najib Posted on August 12, 2015By John Bertthelsen,
Yuan Drops for Third Day After PBOC Reference Rate Declines 1.1%

USD vs SGD/Sing dollar, IDR/Rupiah, MYR/Ringgit, CNY/Yuan, INR/Rupee
30-days price chart,, accessed 10am, 13 August 2015

What a Weaker Chinese Yuan Means for the World - Move to allow the market a greater say in setting the yuan level is roiling currencies, commodities and stocks the world over  by Malcolm Scott and Ailing Tan

EL-ERIAN: China made the right move, but at the wrong time by Mohamed El-Erian, Contributor Aug. 12, 2015, 2:28 PM

11 August 2015: VEGOILS-Palm oil continues decline amid caution over data - Reuters; BMD RM2030/US$517, BofAML sees no end to global soybean glut, but point out soybean farmers previously stock at US$9/bu; China devalues Yuan

VEGOILS-Palm oil continues decline amid caution over data  10-Aug-2015 07:14:54 PM  * Malaysia Aug. 1-10 exports up 57.6 pct -ITS  * MPOB reports palm oil stocks up 5.29 pct in July  By Fergus Jensen  JAKARTA, Aug 10 (Reuters) ....By the close on Monday, the benchmark palm oil contract for October 1FCPOc3 on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange was 0.64 percent lower at 2,030 ringgit ($516.93) a tonne, erasing early gains...

Palm Reads: August 2015 vegetable oil trends - ASEAN - 23pp by BofAML points out: Palm stocks to grow on post Ramadan palm supply catchup, biological upcycle and weak demand on soy, Brent and EM weakness...We are yet to see enough from Indonesian biodiesel or El Nino to suggest they can help tighten the market anytime soon..... We see no end in sight to the global soybean glut with stocks-to-use likely to keep growing through the next twelve months with limited supply discipline likely from lower cost South American farmers. But soybean farmers have historically been able to withhold selling and offer downside price support for soybean/ soy oil at US$9/bu or US$660/tonne - which might somewhat limit the downside for vegetable oil prices despite the growing glut....

China Moves to Devalue the Yuan By Lingling Wei  Aug. 10, 2015 10:00 p.m. ET BEIJING—China’s central bank moved to devalue its tightly controlled currency Tuesday as the world’s second-largest economy continues to sputter.
In an apparent effort to blunt criticism over China’s exchange-rate policy, the People’s Bank of China took the step with an eye toward making the yuan’s value more market-based: the midpoint, or...

8 August 2015: Important traders worried about demand destruction for palm oil? Reuters-VEGOILS-Palm oil hits 11-month low as demand worries persist, BMD RM2035/US$525; Bloomberg - Commodities Are Crashing Like It's 2008 All Over Again 

Note: Important traders worried about demand destruction for palm oil or the relative preference shift to other oils when prices in historical relative proximity. Note, an example here of higher incomes resulting in switch on sat fats concers: Khor Reports - fast food watch: Macdonalds in Singapore - trimming palm oil for canola and sun blends

VEGOILS-Palm oil hits 11-month low as demand worries persist 05-Aug-2015 06:24:05 PM By Michael Taylor *Prices touch 2,023 ringgit, lowest since Sept. 11 *Concerns on India, China demand weigh on prices JAKARTA, Aug 5 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures reversed gains to hit an 11-month low on Wednesday as worries about rising production and falling demand offset initial support from a weak currency and firmer comparative vegetable oils. By the close, the benchmark palm oil contract for October on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange had eased 1.3 percent to 2,035 ringgit ($525) a tonne.....

Commodities Are Crashing Like It's 2008 All Over Again  by Debarati Roy August 5, 2015 — 8:29 PM HKTUpdated on August 6, 2015 — 5:51 AM HKT

24 July 2015: VEGOILS-Palm slips for second day, tracks losses in overseas markets - Reuters; BMD RM2188/$575

VEGOILS-Palm slips for second day, tracks losses in overseas markets By Fergus Jensen 23-Jul-2015 07:18:45 PM ?Palm tracks drops in Dalian RBD palm oil -trader ?Russia considers limits on palm oil use in food production JAKARTA, July 23 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures declined in quiet trading on Thursday, extending losses into a second session after declines in competing markets, potential Russian limits on the use of the tropical oil and concerns over recent export data. ....By Thursday's close benchmark palm oil for October delivery on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives  was down 0.73 percent at 2,188 ringgit ($575.03) a tonne....

23 July 2015: Note on rising palm oil food use limits / nutrition concerns outside core developed markets and the soybean oil vs rapeseed oil tussle of high oleics; Reuters - VEGOILS-Palm edges down from one-week high as Q3 output eyed, Russia considers limits on palm oil use in food production, major food manufacturers in Thailand have moved from using palm oil to rice bran oil in potato crisps and snacks — a change that appears to be driven by the industry’s own assessment of health trends among Thai consumers?

VEGOILS-Palm edges down from one-week high as Q3 output eyed By Fergus Jensen 22-Jul-2015 07:12:30 PM * Palm oil also pressured by stronger ringgit * May drop to 2,190 rgt as failed to break 2,227 -analyst TECH/C

Note: The apparent food use limits or nutrition concerns (sat fats driven) about palm oil have been spreading beyond the core developed markets to Singapore, Iran and now possibly Russia? While palm oil hopes for US transfats ban boost, the expectation were limited as the expected ban had food manufacturers transitioning well ahead of time; also it appears that soybean and canola high oleics are going to be tussling over market shares too.

Cargill set to take on soybean oil campaign Posted Jul. 16th, 2015 by Sean Pratt; ...Willie Loh, vice-president of market development with Cargill, told the conference that the major players in the food service and packaged food industries have already made the switch from partially hydrogenated soy oil to high oleic canola oil.
 “The penetration of high oleic canola has been nothing short of remarkable,” he said.
... However, annual sales growth is flattening out. Sales that expanded at more than 10 percent per year from 2009-11 have slowed to four percent per year, which is equal to the population growth rate in North America.
 He said high oleic canola has been on the market since 1993, and food manufacturers have figured out when they need it and when they can use lower cost substitutes.
 “We believe that market penetration is near the maximum,” said Loh.
...Loh feels there is a good chance high oleic acreage will actually contract because of the looming competition from high oleic soybeans.
 “If you’re in the high oleic canola industry, look out the window, they’re all coming after you,” he said. ....The United Soybean Board is spending $12 million per year for five years promoting the new product in an attempt to regain the millions of acres it has lost to canola.

“This is a lot of money. They’re going to win. This is a big industry and there’s blood in the water,” said Loh.

Russia considers limits on palm oil use in food production MOSCOW, July 22; Russia is considering imposing limits on the use of palm oil in food production, Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich was quoted as saying by Russian news agencies on Wednesday. TASS news agency quoted Dvorkovich, who oversees the agriculture sector, as saying the government was yet to decide on what action to take. Proposals include tightening rules on use of the tropical oil and greater transparency in the sector, Interfax quoted Dvorkovich as telling reporters in the Siberian city of Irkutsk. The reports gave no indication as to why the government was considering the limits.
Russia banned most Western food imports in August 2014 in response to economic sanctions imposed by Western governments over Moscow's role in the crisis in Ukraine. Coupled with a decline by the rouble against the U.S. dollar, the ban has forced domestic food producers to use cheaper raw materials, including more palm oil, to try to cut costs, Vedomosti newspaper reported this week..... Russia has imported 512,000 tonnes of palm oil since the start of the marketing year on Oct. 1, Andrey Sizov, the head of SovEcon agriculture consultancy, told Reuters. The bulk of imports - 418,000 tonnes - came from Indonesia, the world's top producer of palm oil, while Malaysia was the second largest supplier....

How to end palm oil’s unsustainable rule by Bhavani Shankar 21/07/15; .... However, palm oil is higher in saturated fat than many other oils, and so linked with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. And large-scale oil palm cultivation has contributed to tropical deforestation, leading to higher greenhouse gas emissions and biodiversity loss.... The companies that have profited from the rapid expansion of oil palm plantations and palm oil production have done little to mitigate for these impacts and costs. Although palm oil could be produced more sustainably, this is difficult given the sheer scale of production in locations with extensive tropical forest and poor monitoring systems to prevent forest clearance. And efforts to reduce the health risks of highly saturated fat will inevitably mean some degree of substitution with other oils. .... A shift from palm oil -  These are all good reasons to move away from the palm oil-dominated status quo. To do this, researchers first need to better understand how the economic, environmental and health aspects of the problem relate to each other. Research in this area too often fails to promote understanding of how actions recommended in one area might play out in another — and this leads to uncertainty or lost opportunities for action. For example, lowering palm oil use by removing production subsidies could bring both health and environmental benefits, but these co-benefits may be missed when advocates focus only on one of these areas..... National trends such as changing consumer preferences could also be leveraged. For example, major food manufacturers in Thailand have moved from using palm oil to rice bran oil in potato crisps and snacks — a change that appears to be driven by the industry’s own assessment of health trends among Thai consumers. Nevertheless, it is an opportunity for public health messages to influence consumer opinion and promote a broader choice of oils....Bhavani Shankar is an applied economist and professor of international food, agriculture and health at SOAS, University of London, United Kingdom. He co-leads the Wellcome Trust-funded project Palm Oil: Sustainability, Health and Economics. He can be contacted at

21 July 2015: VEGOILS-Palm oil drops for 3rd day on falling exports, firm dollar  - Reuters

VEGOILS-Palm oil drops for 3rd day on falling exports, firm dollar By Naveen Thukral 20-Jul-2015 07:02:57 PM *Futures drop to 2,165 ringgit, lowest since July 9 *Malaysia's July 1-20 palm oil exports down 15.5 pct -ITS...Palm oil may drop to 2,139 ringgit per tonne as it has breached support at 2,182 ringgit, according to Wang Tao, a Reuters market analyst for commodities technical


16 July 2015: VEGOILS-Palm oil eases from 1-week top on worries about slowing demand  - Reuters

VEGOILS-Palm oil eases from 1-week top on worries about slowing demand By Naveen Thukral 15-Jul-2015 06:19:14 PM *Palm oil falls 0.2 pct after climbing to 1-week top on Tuesday *Concerns about slowing demand, rising output pressure prices

Palm oil fund body eyes Rp 4.5 trillion in 2015 - Jakarta Post;

15 July 2015: VEGOILS -Palm oil up for 4th day on short-covering, firmer soybeans - Reuters; CIMB - Regional Plantation - Indonesian biodiesel conundrum

VEGOILS -Palm oil up for 4th day on short-covering, firmer soybeans 14-Jul-2015 07:43:18 PM By Mayank Bhardwaj NEW DELHI, July 14 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures rose for the fourth consecutive session on short-covering ahead of holidays and strength in Chicago soybean futures. Chicago soybeans futures climbed 0.55 percent as U.S. crop conditions deteriorated slightly.  The September palm oil contract  on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange rose 0.14 percent, or 3 ringgit, to 2,204 ringgit a tonne by the close.

CIMB - Regional Plantation - Indonesian biodiesel conundrum; 15 July 2015 at 08:21....

14 July 2015: VEGOILS -Palm oil flat in thin trade, slowing exports pressure prices   - Reuters; Bloomberg articles: Singapore Economy Contracts Most Since 2012, China May Tip World Into Recession, Morgan Stanley’s Sharma Says, Five Charts Putting China's Stock Market Mayhem in Perspective

VEGOILS -Palm oil flat in thin trade, slowing exports pressure prices  By Mayank Bhardwaj 13-Jul-2015 06:54:34 PM  *Sharp decline in exports keep pressure on prices *Trading is expected remain slow this week

Singapore Economy Contracts Most Since 2012 on Manufacturing by Livia Yapand Sharon Chen July 14, 2015 — 8:00 AM HKTUpdated on July 14, 2015 — 8:46 AM HKT; Singapore’s economy contracted more than analysts predicted last quarter, underscoring the weakening outlook for Asian nations amid sluggish global growth. The local dollar weakened to its lowest level in more than a month.Gross domestic product fell an annualized 4.6 percent in the three months through June from the previous quarter, when it expanded a revised 4.2 percent, the trade ministry said in a statement on Tuesday. The median of 13 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey was for a 1.5 percent contraction.
Growth in global trade has slowed in the last few years after outpacing world expansion for decades, according to the International Monetary Fund. A commodities slump, China’s slowdown and uneven recoveries in the U.S. and Europe have damped the exports that power many Asian economies.

China May Tip World Into Recession, Morgan Stanley’s Sharma Says by Ye Xieand Gavin Serkin July 14, 2015 — 7:13 AM HKT; Forget about all the shoes, toys and other exports. China may soon have another thing to offer the world: a recession. That is the prediction from Ruchir Sharma, head of emerging markets at Morgan Stanley Investment Management, who says a continuation of China’s slowdown in the next years may drag global economic growth below 2 percent, a threshold he views as equivalent to a world recession. It would be the first global slump over the past 50 years without the U.S. contracting....

Five Charts Putting China's Stock Market Mayhem in Perspective - "Markets are allowed to operate on the way up, not on the way down"  by Malcolm Scott July 14, 2015 — 12:18 AM HKT

Greece and China Battle for Most Dangerous ETF - Who will win? Pop a Dramamine and check out this chart  by Eric Balchunas July 14, 2015 — 12:07 AM HKT; Quick, which one's crazier, Greece or China? The collapse of Chinese stocks in the past month does indeed eclipse Greece's market turmoil. But when it comes to the volatility of the exchange-traded funds tracking those two markets, it's a (scary) toss-up. The Global X FTSE Greece 20 ETF (GREK) and the Deutsche X-Trackers Harvest CSI 300 China A-Shares ETF (ASHR) appear to be vying for riskiest ETF1increase click area. Both have seen their volatility more than triple in the past 10 days, to levels that surpass even the most hard-core leveraged funds.

13 July 2015: Thai govt to buy 100,000 tonnes palm oil from domestic producers, to relieve oversupply - Reuters

Thai govt to buy 100,000 T palm oil from domestic producers By Reuters / Reuters   | July 13, 2015 : 9:02 PM MYT; BANGKOK (July 13): Thailand will buy 100,000 tonnes of crude palm oil from domestic producers between June and November using a government fund of 2.9 billion baht ($85.2 million), a senior government official said on Monday....The government purchases aim to keep the domestic price of palm oil competitive and relieve oversupply, Lersak Rewtarkulpaiboon, a secretary general at the country's Office of Agricultural Economics told reporters.The domestic crude palm oil inventory has reached 300,000 tonnes recently, more than the 220,000 tonnes the government sees as adequate. The plan goes to the cabinet for approval at a meeting on Tuesday, he added....


  • USDA GAIN Report: Palm Oil Production-Supply-Demand Update Thailand, June 2015,
  • Thai govt to buy 50,000 T palm oil after drought cuts domestic supply by Reuters January 19, 2015 5:24 AM; BANGKOK, Jan 19 (Reuters) - Thailand plans to import around50,000 tonnes of crude palm oil from February due to a domesticshortage caused by drought, using a 1.5 billion baht ($46million) government fund, a deputy prime minister said onMonday....."This will be a short-term measure until we reach palm oilproduction season," Prawit Wongsuwan told reporters following ameeting in Bangkok. Palm oil output peaks in the second half ofthe year. Imports are expected to come from either Indonesia orMalaysia, Wiwan Boonyaprateeprat, secretary-general of the ThaiOil Palm and Palm Oil Association, told Reuters. The government would pay a maximum of $0.86 per kg,including delivery costs, he said. Thailand is experiencing drought in nine provinces, whichcut palm oil output in November and December 2014 by 27 percenton the year, according to the Office of Agricultural Economics...


10 July 2015: VEGOILS -Palm oil edges up on lower June output, stock drawdown, VEGOILS-Palm oil up from 6-week low on lower output expectations - Reuters

VEGOILS -Palm oil edges up on lower June output, stock drawdown By Mayank Bhardwaj 10-Jul-2015 07:11:17 PM *June stocks drop 4.33 pct from revised 2.24 mln T at end-May *Output in June falls 2.58 percent to 1.76 million tonnes *June exports rise 5.19 percent to 1.69 million tonnes

VEGOILS-Palm oil up from 6-week low on lower output expectations By Mayank Bhardwaj NEW DELHI, July 9 (Reuters)  *Palm ticks up after dropping 2.7 pct on Wednesday *Market lifted by expectations of lower June output data... The September palm oil contract on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange gained 1.6 percent to 2,185 ringgit ($573.2) a tonne by the close.... On the technical front, palm oil has found a support around 2,139 ringgit and is expected to bounce to 2,182 ringgit.... The support is provided by the 76.4 percent Fibonacci retracement on the uptrend from the April 29 low of 2,070 ringgit to the June 8 high of 2,362 ringgit, according to Wang Tao, a Reuters market analyst for commodities technicals.....

9 July 2015: VEGOILS-Palm oil slides 3 pct on China markets turmoil, Greek crisis - Reuters

VEGOILS-Palm oil slides 3 pct on China markets turmoil, Greek crisis *Palm falls to 6-week low on China, Greek crisis *China stocks tumble as regulator warns of "panic" By Naveen Thukral SINGAPORE, July 8 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures slid for a third session on Wednesday... (September BMD) 2,152 ringgit ($565.72) a tonne by the close...

8 July 2015: VEGOILS-Palm oil drops for 2nd day on Greek concerns, weak soyoil  - Reuters; Sept BMD 2,210 ringgit ($581.6)

VEGOILS-Palm oil drops for 2nd day on Greek concerns, weak soyoil By Naveen Thukral SINGAPORE, July 7 (Reuters)  *Palm oil closes 1.1 pct lower on global concerns *Expectations of lower June output limit losses...The September palm oil contract on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange dropped 1.1 percent, or 25 ringgit, to 2,210 ringgit ($581.6) a tonne by close.

1 July 2015: VEGOILS-Palm gains on improved demand outlook; Greece concerns remain - Reuters, CPO RM 2,268 ringgit ($606); Governments try to support the price of rubber following a prolonged supply glut

VEGOILS-Palm gains on improved demand outlook; Greece concerns remain By Michael Taylor 01-Jul-2015 06:41:49 PM *Palm oil rises to 2,268 ringgit per tonne *Overnight USDA report bolsters palm oil *Greece uncertainty limits gains JAKARTA, July 1 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil finished in positive territory on Wednesday, tracking other vegetable oils higher after a bullish overnight U.S. agriculture department report but with traders remaining cautious after Greece's debt default. The September palm oil contract on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange extended earlier gains to close 1.8 percent higher at 2,268 ringgit ($606) a tonne after trading in a range of 2,234-2,268 ringgit.
Analysts neutral on natural rubber latex usage for roadbuilding Posted on June 29, 2015, Monday
KUCHING: Analysts are neutral on Malaysian government’s plans to use 10 per cent of its natural rubber latex output for roadbuilding from 2016. AmResearch Sdn Bhd (AmResearch) in a report, noted that a similar proposal had been made by the Thai government last year. “Back in August 2014,  it announced plans to increase the domestic consumption of rubber (for example in the construction of infrastructure) from 14 per cent to 20 per cent instead of engaging in costly market buybacks (such as back in 2012) to stabilise prices,” it explained. The research team added, “The moves are attempts by the respective governments to support the price of the commodity following a prolonged supply glut.... Read more:

26 June 2015: VEGOILS-Palm oil ends lower as investors turn cautious on demand - Reuters;RM 2,264 / US$603

VEGOILS-Palm oil ends lower as investors turn cautious on demand 25-Jun-2015 06:54:06 PM  By Anuradha Raghu *Malaysia June 1-20 CPO output down 1.8 pct -growers' group  *Ringgit falls to 3.7670 per dollar... The Malaysian Palm Oil Association, a group of growers, estimates that production dipped by 1.8 percent between June 1-20 from a month earlier, with a drop in yields in top-growing state Sabah....  The September palm oil contract 1FCPOc3 on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange ended 0.3 percent lower at 2,264 ringgit ($603) a tonne on Thursday, shaving off gains after climbing to their highest since June 17 at 2,285 ringgit earlier in the day....

25 June 2015: Indonesia palm oil - levies for prices below $750 and export taxes if prices exceed $750; Gapki seeks CPO Fund support for replanting efforts as well as biodiesel subsidies and other industry development efforts; acknowledges short-term costs of levies but expects positive effects in one  year

26 June update note: Traders point out that new Indonesia levies applies to corporates and NOT smallholders

See 25 June posting here:

VEGOILS-Palm oil rises to 1-week high as ringgit dips further  24-Jun-2015 07:06:45 PM  By Anuradha Raghu  *Malaysian ringgit touches 3.7590 per U.S. dollar  *Indonesian CPO levies may be reviewed periodically - agency  *Malaysia's B10 programme implementation on track - minister

23 June 2015: VEGOILS-Palm falls to 3-wk low as flat exports stoke uncertainty over demand, Sept BMD RM2220/USD595 - Reuters

VEGOILS-Palm falls to 3-wk low as flat exports stoke uncertainty over demand 22-Jun-2015 06:23:45 PM By Anuradha Raghu *Malaysia's June 1-20 palm exports up 0.4-3.3 pct - cargo surveyors *Demand for palm uncertain in final week of June - traders...Production would need to ease to reduce stockpiles, which have swollen to a six-month high of 2.24 million tonnes, the trader added.....The September palm oil contract on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange had edged down 0.8 percent to 2,220 ringgit ($595.17) a tonne by Monday's close, after touching 2,218 ringgit in late trade, their lowest since May 29. Trading was relatively light as Chinese markets were closed for a holiday. ...Technicals show palm oil prices will probably see a target of 2,216 ringgit but face resistance at 2,250 ringgit, according to Reuters market analyst Wang Tao....
22 June 2015: Palm oil eases to RM2240 / USD 599 at Friday close; U.S. Growth No Longer Lifting Asia's Exports

VEGOILS-Palm edges up as ringgit weakens, but posts 2nd weekly drop  By Anuradha Raghu  19-Jun-2015 06:30:58 PM  *Prices down 1.7 pct in 2nd weekly fall  *Ringgit down 0.8 pct to 3.7390 per dollar  *Palm production seen easing during Ramadan - traders  *Indonesia looking to impose $20/T levy on biodiesel - minister ........The September palm oil contract on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange slipped to 2,227 ringgit a tonne in early trade, its lowest since May 29, before settling 0.1 percent higher at 2,240 ringgit ($599.09) by Friday's close.     The pull-up was not enough to prevent palm from another weekly fall. Prices for the week were down 1.7 percent....  In other markets, oil eased below $64 a barrel on Friday...

U.S. Growth No Longer Lifting Asia's Exports - Exports from China, Japan, South Korea and Singapore aren't tracking the Institute for Supply Management's U.S. factory index as closely by Sharon Chen June 22, 2015 — 11:57 AM HKT If you wanted to figure out where Asian exports were headed, U.S. manufacturing data used to be a logical place to start. Not anymore. The U.S. is buying more goods from neighbors such as Mexico instead of Asia, and the shale-gas boom has kept demand within the country, said Christy Tan, head of markets strategy for Asia at National Australia Bank Ltd. The recovery in the world's biggest economy is also more services-oriented this time, and some of the increase in wealth and employment is being used to pay off debt rather than on consumption, she said. "Asia's definitely lagging behind the U.S. recovery, and so if you're talking about an export-led recovery, I'm afraid that's not happening in Asia,'' said Tan. "It's the structural shift in terms of the U.S. recovery where demand is now  ore domestic oriented.''

20 June 2015: Indonesia exports weakening trend - April-May decline with 17.5% drop in palm oil exports and import declines

Exports continue to weaken Grace D. Amianti, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Headlines | Tue, June 16 2015, 12:55 PM . By the end of May, overall exports declined 11.84 percent to $64.72 billion, underscoring a major challenge for the government to reach its 28 percent export growth target this year as part of its ambitious plan to triple exports within five years.“Indonesia should build efforts to increase exports in alternative products, especially in secondary and tertiary types, because people’s incomes are increasing globally,” said Sasmito Hadi Wibowo (BPS deputy head for distribution and service statistics) in reference to manufactured goods and services.BPS head Suryamin said the largest decline in non-oil and gas exports, equal to 17.54 percent month-on-month, occurred in animal fat and vegetable oil products, including palm oil..... From January to May, overall imports dropped 17.9 percent, with oil and gas deliveries shrinking 42.84 percent and non-oil and gas imports down 9.68 percent as weak domestic economic activities mean less demand for imported goods. - See more at:

16 June 2015: U.S. Bans Trans Fat (it was already well on route to voluntary phase out); palm oil rally likely to fizzle as Ramadan demand fades, harvest supply looms - Reuters

U.S. Bans Trans Fat by Anna Edneyand Craig Giammona June 16, 2015 — 2:04 PM BSTUpdated on June 16, 2015 — 3:40 PM BST; Artificial trans fat will be removed from the U.S. food supply over the next three years under a ruling by regulators that the products pose health risks that contribute to heart disease. There’s no longer a scientific consensus that partially hydrogenated oils, the main source of trans fat, are generally recognized as safe, according to a final decision released Tuesday by the Food and Drug Administration. The oils are used for frying and in baked goods as well as in confections. Food companies will be able to petition the FDA to gain approval of specific uses of partially hydrogenated oils if they have data proving the use isn’t harmful. Companies will have until June 2018 to comply with the FDA’s determination, either by removing trans fat or gaining a waiver. The FDA said it hasn’t seen any data to prove that even low levels of partially hydrogenated oils are safe.... The food industry has been using partially hydrogenated oils for decades, though many such as Kellogg Co., Kraft Foods Group Inc. and ConAgra Foods Inc. have been phasing them out. Many baked goods such as pie crusts and biscuits as well as canned frosting still use partially hydrogenated oils because they help baked goods maintain their flakiness and frostings be spreadable. As for frying, palm oil is expected to be a go-to alternative, while modified soybean oil may catch on as well.........

Muslims in Malaysia begin Ramadan fast Thursday Updated: Tuesday June 16, 2015 MYT 8:42:46 PM

Palm oil rally likely to fizzle as Ramadan demand fades, harvest supply looms KUALA LUMPUR, June 12  |  By Anuradha Raghu  A rally in the price of palm oil to three month-highs may run out of steam as buying ahead of the Muslim festival of Ramadan fades and markets brace for growing supply as the main harvest approaches, traders and analysts said.
With only around a week left of what is typically the strongest demand period for the tropical oil, analysts said palm was unlikely to climb much beyond its current price of about 2,300 ringgit a tonne, with some saying it might fall.

15 June 2015: VEGOILS-Palm hits two-week low, falls most since March, on oversupply concerns  - Reuters

VEGOILS-Palm hits two-week low, falls most since March, on oversupply concerns 12-Jun-2015 07:38:11 PM JAKARTA, June 12 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures fell to their lowest in two weeks on Friday and made their biggest weekly tumble in 12, as oversupply concerns were compounded by signs that buyers could switch to competing oils as the difference between prices has narrowed. By Friday's close the August palm oil contract on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange was down 0.7 percent at 2,277 ringgit ($605.91) a tonne....

8 June 2015:  VEGOILS-Palm ends higher on weak ringgit, records biggest weekly gain in 4 mths - Reuters

VEGOILS-Palm ends higher on weak ringgit, records biggest weekly gain in 4 mths 05-Jun-2015 06:45:14 PM By Anuradha Raghu *Prices clock biggest weekly rise since Feb with 4.6 pct gain *Malaysia's May palm stocks seen easing to 2.14 mln T -Reuters poll *Ringgit falls to 7-wk low of 3.7200 per U.S. dollar *No damage to ports in Sabah after earthquake *Palm oil to retest resistance at 2,322 ringgit -technical

29 May 2015:  VEGOILS-Palm hits two-week high on weak ringgit, competing markets - Reuters

VEGOILS-Palm hits two-week high on weak ringgit, competing markets 28-May-2015 08:09:33 PM By Fergus Jensen * Rgt down around 1.65 pct against dollar this week * Palm oil may break resistance at 2,222 ringgit -technicals  JAKARTA, May 28 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures rallied to a two-week high on Thursday as traders took advantage of a falling ringgit, supported by gains in competing markets and signs that the El Nino weather phenomenon could already be hurting output in East Malaysia. The August contract 1FCPOc3 on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange was up 1.4 percent at 2,206 ringgit ($605.88) a tonne by Thursday's close. Prices earlier touched 2,219 ringgit, their highest since May 13. Total traded volume stood at 43,601 lots of 25 tonnes each, well above the average 35,000 lots traded by close. Benchmark palm prices have pulled up from more than three-week lows this week, following a surge in the Chinese and U.S. soy markets, with robust export demand so far in May also fuelling the rise.

28 May 2015: Bahana - Indonesian plantations update: Gradual price recovery

Analysis: Indonesian plantations update: Gradual price recovery Agustinus Reza Kirana, Bahana, Jakarta | Business | Thu, May 28 2015, 8:08 AM - See more at:

26 May 2015: VEGOILS-Palm ends higher as strong exports lift; delay to Indonesia CPO levy pressures  - Reuters

VEGOILS-Palm ends higher as strong exports lift; delay to Indonesia CPO levy pressures By Anuradha Raghu  25-May-2015 06:44:29 PM * Palm recovers some losses as jump in exports give boost * Malaysia May 1-25 palm oil exports rise 52.9 pct m/m - ITS  * Indonesia delays $50/T palm levy, could come in two weeks
KUALA LUMPUR, May 25 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures ended higher on Monday after touching their lowest level this month, lifted by strong exports in the No.2 grower, but a delay to export levies in the world's top producer Indonesia mounted some pressure onto the contract.

23 May 2015: Sime Darby sees palm oil at RM2,200-RM2,400 per tonne to year-end; Sime Darby reported a 54.7% plunge in its third-quarter net profit partly due to depressed palm oil pricesl Palm oil should not be seen as a threat 

Sime Darby sees palm oil at RM2,200-RM2,400 per tonne to year-end Published: 22 May 2015 4:50 PM Sime Darby expects palm oil prices to be between RM2,200 and RM2,400 per tonne. – The Malaysian Insider filepic, May 22, 2015. Palm oil prices will likely trade between RM2,200 and RM2,400 per tonne between now to the end of the year, said the chief executive of Malaysia's Sime Darby Bhd, the world's top oil palm planter by land size. That would be higher than the current Malaysian benchmark palm prices of RM2,136 (US$596.31). Sime Darby CEO Tan Sri Mohd Bakke Salleh had in February forecast prices between RM2,300 and RM2,500 until June 2015. googletag.cmd.push(function() {googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1400601790726-3');}); "If El Nino kicks in then the price could be higher. Otherwise, based on our readings of the markets, crop patterns, and production, it should support a RM2,200-RM2,400 price," Bakke said on Friday. He was speaking at a press conference after Sime Darby reported a 54.7% plunge in its third-quarter net profit partly due to depressed palm oil prices. Earnings for the current financial year are expected to come in at RM2-RM2.1 billion, short of a target of RM2.5 billion set earlier, Bakke said. Palm futures have shed more than 5% so far this year in the absence of a weather premium and due to bleak exports. Weak crude oil prices that make the tropical oil less attractive for blending into biofuels have also dragged on prices. - See more at:

Palm oil should not be seen as a threat  By ZAIDI ISHAM ISMAIL - 21 May 2015 @ 4:25 PM KUALA LUMPUR: During the 1980s, the palm oil sector endured constant attack by Western-based non-governmental organisations (NGOs) which hurled the sector with a number of accusations. These accusations mainly focus on palm oil as being unhealthy thus making it dangerous for consumption. Subsequently, the Malaysian palm oil industry backed by the government went all out with guns blazing to counter all these accusations with scientific evidence at hand. The brickbats has somewhat simmered down but resurfaced again of late in particular in Europe with new claims that palm oil destroys the habitat of orangutans and is a contributing factor towards deforestation and global warming. But the Malaysian palm oil industry did not take it sitting down and continued dispelling all these negative connotations and thanks to all of its efforts, it can be safely said that all these accusations have dissipated as the NGOs no longer have t e ammunition to paint a negative picture on palm oil anymore. Malaysian Palm Oil Council chief executive officer Tan Sri Datuk Dr Yusof Basiron said all these new accusations were partly due to the palm oil's popularity which has seen a volume spike in the last ten years. "Palm oil has been slowly replacing the edible oils in Europe and this has caused a serious concern to the edible oil producers over there and the NGOs to initiate the anti-palm oil campaigns in Europe.

17 Mary 2015: India palm oil imports climb, Indonesia April CPO output up 11pct

Palm Imports by India Climb to Highest This Year as Prices Slump 'By'Swansy Afonso May 14, 2015 Palm oil imports by India, the world’s largest buyer, increased in April to the highest level this year after prices tumbled to a seven-month low.
Inbound shipments of crude and refined palm oil rose 7.5 percent to 718,091 metric tons from March, the Solvent Extractors’ Association of India said in an e-mailed statement. That compares with the median estimate of 700,000 tons in a Bloomberg survey. Total vegetable oil imports, including for industrial use, rose 4.4 percent to 1.1 million tons, it said.
Prices in Kuala Lumpur fell in April to the lowest since September as record soybean supplies and lower crude oil costs weakened demand for the commodity used in everything from noodles to biofuel. Palm may slump to a six-year low in the second half as supplies expand and reserves accumulate, according to Dorab Mistry, director at Godrej International Ltd.

Indonesia April crude palm oil output seen up 11 pct m/m -Reuters survey     By Michael Taylor Tue May 12, 2015 3:54am EDT * Indonesia produced 2.662 mln T CPO in April -median estimate     * Exports seen at highest since at least August last year     JAKARTA, May 12 Indonesian crude palm oil (CPO) output likely rose 11 percent in April to its highest since September, a survey of leading industry officials showed, as trees entered a stronger period in the production cycle.     A rise in supply from the world's No.1 producer of the tropical oil could weigh on benchmark palm prices  currently trading near five-week peaks at 2,196 ringgit ($606) per tonne.      Indonesia produced 2.662 million tonnes of CPO in April, the median estimate in a Reuters survey of four Indonesian industry officials and plantation companies showed, versus 2.397 million tonnes in March.      "We have seen similar rises in Malaysia also," said Pawan Kumar, analyst at Rabobank International.      "We saw very subdued production in the lat six months - the production cycle was turning towards a better production month (in April) ... It's more to do with the biological cycle of the trees."     Malaysian palm oil stocks in April rose to a five-month high as accelerating crude palm o l output offset weaker exports, data from an industry regulator showed on Monday.

14 May 2015: El Nino declared by Australia - some analysts raise outlook, Palm oil faces resistance at 2,235 ringgit -technical, Reuters; strong Indonesia biofuel producer sector seek examption from palm oil levy; Masing - environmental issues are used to undermine palm oil to promote competitor oils

VEGOILS-Palm slips, comes off 5-week top on worries over export demand 13-May-2015 06:23:57 PM By Anuradha Raghu; *Prices touch 2,233 ringgit, highest since April 6 *Palm feels pressure due to profit-taking - trader *Palm oil faces resistance at 2,235 ringgit -technicals
KUALA LUMPUR, May 13 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures briefly touched a five-week top on Wednesday on worries an El Nino weather pattern would curb yields, but expectations of weaker export demand in the second half of the month kept a lid on gains.
Biofuel producers demand exemption from palm oil  levy  by Grace D. Amianti, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Fri, May 08 2015, 8:19 AM; Domestic biofuel producers have demanded exemption from paying levies for the shipment of palm oil products overseas, as such policy will create more burdens for the industry. “We are hoping that we will be exempt from the rule of paying US$30 per metric ton of processed palm oil products  because the domestic sales price is already low,” Biofuel Producers Association (Aprobi) executive chairman Paulus Tjakrawan said on Thursday. Paulus said biofuel producers had suffered from margin compression following the slump in global CPO prices, which were currently traded at $614 per ton, as the government has also yet to set the newest benchmark price for biodiesel through export reference price (HPE).
The government is in the process of setting a new biodiesel price with a formula of CPO price plus $125 per ton and transport cost.  The $125 figure is based on the government’s recent calculation, lower than the previous $188. “The new benchmark price formula will not offer any profit for us and it will be heavier if the CPO price rebounds to above $750, which means we should also pay export tax besides paying the additional levy,” Paulus said. Under an existing rule, exporters will have to pay between 7.5 percent and 22.5 percent in export tax if the CPO price is higher than $750 per ton. If the CPO price is lower than $750 per ton, exporters will be exempt from the export tax.
However, they will have to pay the levy regardless of the CPO price, as stated in a regulation to take effect later this month. ....

El Nino May Spur Palm Oil Rally as UBS Highlights Impact  by hidden line after 'By'Ranjeetha Pakiamand Rishaad Salamat 12:49 PM HKT  May 13, 2015; Palm oil may rally should an El Nino weather pattern spur dry conditions across Southeast Asia, hurting output, while key buyers such as China bring forward purchases to guarantee supplies. Prices may advance to 2,500 ringgit ($694) a metric ton over the next three months, Maybank Investment Bank Bhd. analyst Ong Chee Ting said in a report on Wednesday. That’s 14 percent higher than Wednesday’s close on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives. The return of an El Nino for the first time since 2010 was declared on Tuesday by Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology, which said that the event could be substantial. El Ninos influence conditions across the globe and in Asia they can bake Indonesia and Malaysia, the two largest palm oil producers. Planters’ stocks including IOI Corp. Bhd. in Malaysia rose on Wednesday....

What an El Nino Means for Agriculture in Asia 11:30 AM HKT  May 13, 2015
UBS Wealth Management Executive Director of Commodities, Rates, FX Wayne Gordon discusses El Nino in the Pacific ocean, its impact on agriculture and how investors should play it. He speaks to Bloomberg’s Rishaad Salamat on “Trending Business.” (Source: Bloomberg)
Oil's Not Coming Back. Here's Why 'By'Moming Zhou 7:01 AM HKT   May 13, 2015
Global oil demand will grow just 1.3 million barrels a day to 94.58 million next year, the Energy Information Administration said Tuesday. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg
Oil bulls who’ve cheered a rebound of 40 percent from a six-year low should take heed: Unless demand accelerates, the rally is in danger. The omens aren’t good. The U.S. government expects global consumption to grow next year at less than half the rate of 2010, when the world was emerging from a previous recession. The growth is insufficient to close the gap with rising supply, according to Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Europe’s biggest energy producer. The last time oil crashed, during the 2008 financial crisis, China’s appetite for commodities seemed insatiable, and powered prices higher. This time, Chinese fuel use is growing at half the rate of the past decade, and sliding U.S. shale output could reverse as prices rise, smothering the gains. “The recent rally appears driven by investors looking at catching the bottom of the market and the expectation that U.S. oil production has reached a turning point,” said Harry Tchilinguirian, BNP Paribas SA’s London-based head of commodity markets strategy. “But fundamentals, notably in the U.S., have not changed much.”...

Supermarket ordered to remove products with anti-palm oil labels  by sharon ling Updated: Wednesday May 13, 2015 MYT 6:13:56 PM; KUCHING: A supermarket here has been directed to remove products with anti-palm oil labelling from its shelves following complaints from the oil palm industry. The state Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Ministry has instructed the supermarket to stop selling the products after inspecting the premises on Wednesday.
It said the products were imported from Australia and were believed to have entered the market here about a week ago. The labels, which showed an orang utan urging shoppers to buy palm oil-free products to help save the animals, earned the ire of Land Development Minister Tan Sri James Masing when they were brought to his attention on Tuesday. He criticised the “unfriendly” labelling for being unfair to Malaysia’s palm oil industry and as being based on incorrect facts. “Our orang utan habitats are not where the oil palm plantations are. The areas where orang utans are found have been declared as wildlife sanctuaries and we don’t disturb them. “In Sarawak, we have one million hectares of totally protected areas and out of this 22% or 218,000ha are for orang utans. In fact, in Lanjak-Entimau Wildlife Sanctuary the population of orang utans has increased to 5,000 now,” he said. Masing also said anti-palm oil campaigns were due to economic rivalry with other vegetable oils like soya bean, sunflower and rapeseed. “It’s an economic issue camouflaged as an environmental issue. The campaigners are using the orang utan as an excuse to undermine palm oil and promote competitors,” he said....

7 May 2015: Palm oil hits 1-month high after Indonesia signs export levy - Reuters; wheat battle for market share drives US what prices down more than 20% ytd

VEGOILS-Palm oil hits 1-month high after Indonesia signs export levy By Anuradha Raghu 06-May-2015 06:24:43 PM
* Price touches 2,200 ringgit in early trade
* Indonesia palm export levy approved, effective 3rd week of May
* Malaysia's April palm stocks seen at 5-mth high of 2.13 mln T- Reuters poll
* Palm oil targets 2,235 ringgit -technicals

Wheat heavyweights battle for global market share by Gregory Meyer in New York and Emiko Terazono in London Last updated: May 6, 2015 1:02 pm; Australia, Canada, Europe, Russia and the US are among the heavyweights battling for a piece of the global wheat market. Surplus stocks, sharp currency moves and large impending crops are reshaping trade flows of the staple grain, with winners and losers.  Aggressive sales by big exporters have pushed benchmark US wheat prices down more than 20 per cent this year to below $5 a bushel. Hedge funds have got the message, holding three bearish bets for every bullish one in Chicago’s futures and options markets. “You would have to search to find something to turn the wheat market around,” says Richard Feltes, vice-president at broker RJ O’Brien.  Wheat is a versatile crop, grown in a variety of climates and used in products from bread to noodles to animal feed. After years of high prices, farmers have grown two straight record harvests. A third year of production above 700m tonnes is on the cards, according to the International Grains Council.  Soren Schroder, chief executive of Bunge , a New York-listed grain trader and miller, says: “The decline in prices is just a reflection of the very good crop outlook everywhere. Many origins are competing against each other for the same business.”
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5 May 2015: Reuters - Palm oil jumps over 3% as ringgit slumps

Reuters - Palm oil jumps over 3% as ringgit slumps Published: 5 May 2015 3:14 PM
Palm oil futures is up while the ringgit slides downwards. – The Malaysian Insider filepic, May 5, 2015.Palm oil futures is up while the ringgit slides downwards. – The Malaysian Insider filepic, May 5, 2015.Malaysian palm oil futures jumped more than 3% on Tuesday to their highest in nearly two weeks as the ringgit slid and overseas soyoil markets tracked by palm underpinned sentiment.
The benchmark July contract on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange rose as much as 3.1% to RM2,168 (US$601.89) a tonne, its highest since April 24, after reopening from a long weekend. It settled at RM2,152, up 2.4%, by the midday break.
After strong gains last week, the Malaysian ringgit slumped on Tuesday, touching 3.6100 per US dollar, which helped stoke buying interest from overseas palm investors.
The currency was down 1.2% at 3.6020 by 0553 GMT (1.53pm Malaysian time), marking its biggest intraday drop in more than three months.

More of Brazil’s sugar scooped up for ethanol, but sweet spot elusive By Patricia Manso | May 5, 2015 12:01 AM Comments (0); When you’re sitting on a shed load of sugarcane, it’s nice to know you have options. For Brazil, as the powerhouse of global sugar production, that choice falls into two broad areas — make sugar, or make ethanol. With Brazil’s car fleet thoroughly geared up for ethanol consumption, an estimated 26 billion liters of ethanol is set to be produced to meet that domestic demand. Brazilian drivers opt to fill their tanks with gasoline or hydrous ethanol depending on the price of the fuel at the pump. The price of hydrous ethanol, which has a lower energy content than gasoline, is considered an attractive alternative for consumers if it is less than 70% of the price of But the competitiveness of ethanol versus gasoline at the pumps could yet shake out further demand from end users, while the relative profitability of ethanol versus sugar means that sugar stocks could dwindle in the key Center-South region. Maintaining the delicate equilibrium is key, as we ask the question whether 26 billion liters of ethanol will be enough for Center-South Brazil............

1 May 2015: Reuters - palm records 2nd monthly drop to 30 April. CPO prices to remain soft amid lacklustre demand and weak crude oil prices? Malaysia palm oil exports to Korea.

VEGOILS-Palm rises for first time this week; records 2nd monthly drop 30-Apr-2015 06:32:17 PM By Anuradha Raghu
*    April marks second straight monthly drop, down 3.8 pct
*    Malaysia's April palm exports down 6-7 pct m/m -cargo surveyors
*    India could snap up bigger palm olein cargoes in May -trader
*    Palm oil to end bounce around 2,118 rgt - technicals
KUALA LUMPUR, April 30 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures rose for the first time in a week on Thursday as investors squared positions ahead of a long holiday weekend, but the gains were not enough to prevent the contract from recording its second straight monthly drop.
A strong ringgit and worries over rising palm supplies in key growers had seen the tropical oil succumb to a six-day losing streak, which dragged benchmark prices to their weakest since September 2014... However, the closure of Malaysian markets from Friday to Monday prompted some investors to square positions, which helped reduce selling pressure, market players said.
The benchmark July contract 1FCPOc3 on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange inched up 1 percent to 2,102 ringgit ($590) a tonne by Thursday's close... The gain, however, was not enough to overturn overall losses for April, with prices down 3.8 percent. Prices also notched their biggest weekly drop in six weeks.... Despite weak exports in April, anticipation of firmer demand from key customers next month also provided support for prices. "Olein demand from India is rumoured to pick up in May," said a trader with a local commodities brokerage in Malaysia.... "Prices will be ranging between 2,050-2,100 ringgit, unless the ringgit weakens to 3.70 again, which is highly unlikely." The Malaysian currency was trading at 3.5600 per U.S. dollar by 1005 GMT. It last hit 3.7000 on April 16.
RAM HOLDINGS BERHAD - CPO prices to remain soft amid lacklustre demand and weak crude oil prices Published on 29 April 2015; The price of crude palm oil (CPO) came in at the lower end of RAM’s price forecast of RM2,200/MT-RM2,400/MT for 1Q 2015, averaging RM2,204/MT. Notwithstanding the effects of a weak ringgit, the commodity’s price is expected to remain soft, as concerns over lacklustre demand amid competition from an ample supply of substitute oils and a weak crude oil-price environment weigh on prices. The still-narrow premium of soy oil to CPO (1Q 2015: c.USD90/MT, 2014: c.USD88/MT) could also reduce the appeal of CPO, dampening growth in demand for the commodity as consumers switch to competing oils.  A pick-up in CPO production, as yields recover after disruptions caused by floods and the effects of dry-weather that had depressed CPO production in January and February 2015, may lead to a build-up in Malaysia’s palm oil inventory to over 2 million MT in the near term, further pressuring prices. As at end-March 2015, palm oil stocks in Malaysia stood at 1.87 million MT, a respective 10.5% and 5.2% higher y-o-y and m-o-m........

Malaysia to expand palm oil exports to Korea Updated : 2015-04-28 19:28; A top Malaysian official expressed hope that South Korea would import more palm oil products from the Southeast Asian country. “Korea is a very strategic trade partner and an important market for Malaysian palm oil,” said Dato’ Ar. Wan Khair-il Anuar, Malaysian Palm Oil Board chairman in an interview with The Korea Herald in Seoul on Monday.  The high-level official, who is also a member of parliament representing Kuala Kangsar, is on a five-day visit to Seoul to promote the nutritional excellence and industrial strength of Malaysian palm oil at the 2015 Malaysia-South Korea Palm Oil Trade Fair and Seminar, or POTS.  In 2014, Malaysia exported 855,000 tons of palm products to South Korea, generating about $500 million in export revenue, according to the Malaysian government data. Palm oil takes up about 44 percent, or 374,000 tons, and palm kernel cake, mostly used in South Korean animal feed, takes up about 40 percent, or 341,000 tons. Despite the success of the palm oil business, the industry has been constantly challenged by anti-palm oil campaigns alleging that it is saturated and unhealthy. “We have responded to these allegations accordingly by carrying out extensive research with globally recognized centers and proved that palm oil is indeed a nutritionally superior oil,” said Wan Khair-il Anuar.  A recent study by the Australian institute Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, or CSIRO, revealed that palm oil is as healthy as olive oil in its effects on blood lipid. The board chairman also stressed palm oil’s sustainability as a source of bioenergy.  “We have also developed our own Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil Standard to help the whole industry to achieve sustainability requirements,” he said........

26 April 2015: Uggah - Malaysia  sellers of FFB must include names; trade news links

Uggah: Sellers of FFB must include names; Posted on April 18, 2015, Saturday; KUCHING: Sellers of palm oil fresh fruit bunches (FFB) are now required to put down their names and particulars to be sent to Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) for monitoring and checking purposes.
This is a new strategy introduced with the aim to curb the never-ending thefts of fresh fruits bunch in the state, says Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities Datuk Seri Douglas Uggah.
He said mills and collection centres were only initially required to record the quantity of the FFB sold to them but now they had to get the names of the sellers as well. “Failing to get their names means the collection centres are committing an offence and stern action will be taken against them,” he told a media conference after chairing a second meeting to discuss FFB issues here yesterday. Deputy Home Minister Dato Sri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar and representatives from other relevant agencies were also present; Uggah lamented that the FFB thefts in Sarawak was a matter of concern because despite the operation code-named Ops Sawit Kenyalang mounted from July 1 to December last year there was still no end to the problem. Ops Sawit Kenyalang 2015 was launched on April 2.
He said that from January to March this year the authority had received 82 reports of FFB thefts throughout the state involving a total area of 18,192 hectares including Samarahan, Sibu, Mukah, Kapit and Miri. “To prevent the sales of FFB from suspicious sources MPOB has issued a directive which restricts mills from buying more than two tonnes of FFB per hectare,” he said. Uggah said through the operation conducted by MPOB and various other enforcement agencies including the police from July to December last year a total of 278 compounds and 41 show cause letters had been issued to several operators to explain why their licences should not be suspended......
Read more:

Palm oil exports higher than expected in first quarter Linda Yulisman, The Jakarta Post | Business | Sat, April 18 2015, 11:58 AM; Business News Starbucks stores reopen Saturday after computer glitch Eurozone express hopes that Greek criticism will bear fruit Public campaign Exports of palm oil from Indonesia rose higher than expected in the first quarter as demand from main buyers,particularly China,increased significantly.Shipments of palm oil, including crude and processed, climbed 13.7 percent to 5.6 million tons in the January-March period from last year as most key buyers, excluding China, purchased a higher volume of the commodity used to make a wide range of products, from cooking oil to cosmetics.Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association (Gapki) executive director Fadhil Hasan said on Friday that such a considerable increase was far higher than the association’s estimate.The business group earlier expected exports from Indonesia, the world’s biggest palm oil producer, to gain only 2.5 percent to 22.3 million tons this year compared to last year as demand from two top buyers — China and India — would remain modest on the back of economic slowdown and a shift to other vegetable oils.“The first quarter result is quite surprising. But, as the price has stayed low, exports have expanded,” Fadhil told The Jakarta Post over the phone.India led the market as purchases increased by 18.75 percent to 1.17 million tons in the first three months of the year. Bigger demand also came from new markets, such as Pakistan and the Middle East, which surged by 19.38 percent to 358,380 tons and by 19.42 percent to 579,470 tons, respectively.Despite the positive growth, lower exports occurred in some main markets, including China and the EU. Shipments to China fell markedly by 35.27 percent to 531,890 tons, making it now the third-biggest destination after the EU. - See more at:

Palm Exports by Indonesia in March Jump Most Since ‘08 on China 'By'Yoga Rusmana 2:47 PM HKT  April 17, 2015 Palm oil shipments from Indonesia, the world’s biggest producer, jumped in March by the most for the month in at least seven years as China led a surge in imports of the cooking oil used in food and fuel. Exports, that include palm and kernel oils, climbed 13.6 percent to 2.03 million metric tons from February, according to the Indonesian Palm Oil Association, known as Gapki, which started publishing the data in 2008. The increase is the first since October and beats the median estimate of 1.8 million tons in a Bloomberg survey. Increasing demand may help curb a 19 percent decline in prices in the past year amid a plunge in crude oil costs that reduced palm’s allure as a biodiesel feedstock. Exports from Malaysia, the second-biggest producer, climbed 22 percent last month after posting an 18 percent drop in February, Malaysian Palm Oil Board data showed April 10. China is the world’s largest importer after India.

India's March palm oil imports jump 25%: SEA Last Updated: Wednesday, April 15, 2015, 14:08
New Delhi: India's palm oil imports rose by 25 percent to 6,82,274 tonnes in March against the year-ago period due to cheaper shipments from Indonesia and Malaysia, Solvent Extractors' Association (SEA) said on Wednesday. Palm oil make up 70 percent of the country's total vegetable oil imports. India meets 60 percent of its annual vegetable oil demand of 17-18 million tonnes via imports.
According to the SEA, palm oil imports have risen as Indonesia and Malaysia had zero export duty on palm products for the last five months to clear surplus stock amid reduced global demand of CPO for bio-diesel production. "Also, high prices of soybean and lesser realisation for soyabean oil and soyabean meal in export market has resulted in lower crushing and lesser oil availability in domestic market, leading to to higher imports," it said in a statement. Global prices of palm oil products have been ruling downward for the past one year, while rupee too has depreciated by 2.5 percent against the US dollar, it added.

22 April 2015: Europe could ban trans fats?

European trans fat report 'could lead to ban' 15 April 2015 by Joyeeta Basu

18 April 2015: Indonesia exports jump on China, Malaysia buyers delay purchases, Thailand policy plans

Palm Exports by Indonesia in March Jump Most Since ‘08 on China 'By'Yoga Rusmana 2:47 PM HKT   April 17, 2015

Aiming for lower prices, Malaysian palm oil buyers to delay purchase Thursday April 16, 2015
KUALA LUMPUR, April 16 — Malaysia’s move to scrap its crude palm oil export tax in May will likely prompt India and China, the biggest buyers of the edible oil, to delay purchases to next month to get cheaper cargoes, industry sources said today. Malaysia’s reduction of the export tax back to zero comes just as its biggest rival Indonesia, the top producer of the tropical oil, moves closer to laying on additional levies to its own palm exports to fund biodiesel subsidies and ambitious mandates rolled out earlier this year....... An Indonesian levy of US$50 a tonne on any crude palm exports shipped at a zero export tax rate will come into effect once signed by President Joko Widodo. ....... Sellers may also want to wait for the no-tax period in May before exporting, and that along with buyers waiting, could push up Malaysian inventories, traders said. “If I’m a CPO seller, I will wait until May, then only sell. Otherwise, I will be paying taxes for no reason,” said one trader with a foreign commodities brokerage in Kuala Lumpur who declined to be named........

Thailand: No intervention to curb price slide of palm oil: Chatchai by Petchanet Pratruangkraiv The Nation April 10, 2015 1:00 am; In spite of the plunge in the price of palm oil, the Commerce Ministry insists on not intervening in the market. It will only call on companies to help farmers by purchasing palm nuts at a price not much below the current market price. The government will also promote more consumption of palm oil in the energy industry and help cut the cost of production for farmers.
After a meeting yesterday with palm oil enterprises, farmers, the Agriculture Ministry, biodiesel operators and the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (Egat), Commerce Minister Chatchai Sarikulya said that in the short run, buyers will help purchase palm nuts directly from small farmers having less than 50 rai of land, at market price and above the cost of production. Starting on Thursday, fertiliser traders have been asked to reduce their prices by 5-10 per cent to help farmers for six months, while palm oil for biodiesel production will be raised from B3 to B7. Egat will increase palm oil for its electricity production from 3,000 tonnes to 12,000 tonnes per month. In the long run, the government will propose a plan to balance supply and demand for palm fruits to avoid the glut plaguing the industry now.....

Corporate news: Fitch affirm ratings of GAR units, KLK raies RM1.6 billion multi-currency sukuk, Asahi Indofood's new beverage plant

15 April 2015: Mistry sees prices between 2,100 and 2,300 ringgit until May

Palm Seen Sinking to Six-Year Low by Mistry as Output Swells 'By'Ranjeetha Pakiam  April 13, 2015; Palm oil, the world’s most used cooking oil, may slump to a six-year low in the second half as supplies expand and reserves accumulate in producing countries, according to Dorab Mistry, director at Godrej International Ltd... Futures in Kuala Lumpur may retreat to 1,900 ringgit ($512) a metric ton, a level last seen in March 2009, Mistry said in remarks prepared for a conference in Beijing. Prices will trade between 2,100 and 2,300 ringgit until May, he said, abandoning a March forecast for a rally to 2,500 ringgit....

13 April 2015: Reuters - export data hopes on prices facing biggest loss in three weeks, technical point to RM2114-2146 range; CIMB notes production in surprise in March; AmBank highlights Platts report on negotiation for lower export levies and Jakarta Post report on biodiesel volume drops

VEGOILS-Palm ends higher but posts biggest weekly drop in three - RTRS By Anuradha Raghu 10-Apr-2015 18:54
KUALA LUMPUR, April 10 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures ended higher on Friday, pulling up from a near 4-1/2-month low touched in late trade as robust export data boosted hopes that demand was improving, although weekly prices still posted their biggest loss in three weeks.
* Weekly prices fall 2.9 pct, biggest drop in three weeks
* Malaysia's April 1-10 palm oil exports up 24-29 pct m/m -cargo surveyors
* Palm to consolidate in 2,114-2,146 rgt range -technicals
* Malaysian March palm stocks rise to 1.87 mln T -MPOB

CIMB - Regional Plantations - Production surprise in March: "Malaysia’s end-Mar 15 palm oil inventories rose 7% mom to a 3-month high of 1.87m tonnes, which is above our and consensus estimates and negative for CPO price. The main surprise for us was the big jump in production at the estates. We expect output to rise seasonally in the coming months and palm oil stocks to trend higher unless exports pick up significantly...."
AmBank Plantation Sector (Neutral): Newsflow for week 6-10 April: "Platts reported that Indonesian Palm Oil Association and Indonesian Palm Oil Board (IPOB) are negotiating with the Finance Ministry to reduce the levies on exports of crude palm oil and olein. IPOB has proposed that the export levy on CPO be lowered from US$50/tonne to US$40/tonne and the export levy on olein be reduced from US$30/tonne to US$25/tonne.... trade sources said palm exporters and plantation owners will be the most affected by the palm oil export levies. A broker said that those who sold forward CPO before 1 April are technically out of pocket by US$50/tonne. Refiners will also be affected as buyers of olein will not be paying for the US$30/tonne levy." and  Jakarta Post reported that biofuel volume in Indonesia fell by 36% YoY to 224,025 kiloliters (79,114 tonnes) in 1Q2015 due to a lack of allocation of biofuel subsidy in the state budget and widening disparity between prices of fossil fuel and biofuel. Due to the uncertainty, Pertamina did not receive enough fatty acid methyl ester in March as a supplier declined to deliver around 900,000 kiloliters (317,832 tonnes) in volume. Pertamina is planning to hold a new auction for 3mil kiloliters (1.06mil tonnes) of fatty acid methyl ester in the future...." 
5 April 2015: Indonesia palm oil prices to drop $30-50/tonne (processed - crude) on new export levy, but may recover if biodiesel program proves "really successful," new levy signing expected 6-7 April; Malaysia CPO export tax re-imposed at 4.5% for April

Indonesia to Impose Palm Oil Export Levy to Subsidize Biofuel 'By'Eko Listiyorini 4:31 PM HKT   April 4, 2015; Indonesia, the world’s biggest palm oil producer, will impose export levies to fund biodiesel subsidies, replanting, research and development. Shippers will pay a levy of $50 a metric ton for palm oil and $30 for processed products starting this month, Sofyan Djalil, coordinating minister for economic affairs, said in Jakarta on Saturday. The government will keep the threshold for application of a separate export tax at $750 a ton, Djalil said........ Indonesia has promoted biofuel use to help absorb rising supplies of the world’s most-traded cooking oil and to cut carbon emissions. The country boosted the mandated amount of palm blending in diesel to 10 percent from 7.5 percent in 2013, and ordered power plants to mix 20 percent in 2014. The biodiesel subsidy was raised in February to 4,000 rupiah (31 U.S. cents) a liter from 1,500 rupiah and the mandated blending for diesel will be increased to 15 percent in April........ The levy will be paid even when the export tax is at zero and will be “taken from export tax proceeds when prices are above $750,” Djalil said on March 20. The government sets the tax monthly, based on average prices in Jakarta, Rotterdam and Kuala Lumpur. Crude palm oil shipments attract no tax if the average is $750 or less over four weeks, with rates at 7.5 percent to 22.5 percent at higher prices....... Ivy Ng, an analyst at CIMB Investment Bank Bhd. in Kuala Lumpur, said the decision might hurt Indonesian producers in the short term as domestic prices could decline. “Local prices of crude palm oil will fall by close to $50 per ton while processed palm oil in local market will fall by $30 per ton,” Ng said by phone on Saturday. “In three to six months time if the biodiesel program becomes really successful then prices may recover.”........ Indonesia has maintained zero tax on most palm oil shipments for seven months through April because the reference price stayed below the $750 threshold, the Trade Ministry said March 30. The government decree regarding the new levy is expected to be signed on April 6 or 7 and the ruling will become effective upon signing, Djalil said...........

CPO export tax brings cheers to palm oil refiners By: HANIM ADNAN Saturday, 4 April 2015
THE re-imposition of Malaysia’s export tax on crude palm oil (CPO) at 4.5% this month after its suspension since September last year, is seen as a mixed blessing by local palm oil industry players.
Palm oil refiners, whose margins are mostly affected by the zero duty on CPO exports imposed seven months ago have plenty to cheer about by this latest turn of event. Refiners have been experiencing negative processing margins due to the insufficient CPO supply by upstream plantation players, which have been taking advantage of the zero duty to push for more CPO exports. “Many refiners have to operate below optimal refining capacity to cut their losses. “But the re-imposition of a 4.5% CPO export tax will see more upstream planters channelling back their CPO output to local refiners just to avoid the export tax,” says a palm oil refiner with a local plantation company.

3 April 2015: Q4 2014 Indonesia corporate results: The worst in several years (plantations among "the ugly") - Bahana; Genting-Musim Mas refinery

Analysis: Q4 2014 corporate results: The worst in several years Harry Su, Bahana, Jakarta | Business | Thu, April 02 2015, 8:24 AM With 93 out of 95 stocks under our coverage (76 percent of the total market capitalization of the index) having already reported their financial results for the fourth quarter last year (Q4 2014), it is safe to say that the last quarter was one of the worst result seasons in the past few years for the Indonesian stock market. More than 50 percent or 48 stocks booked Q4 2014 performances below our expectations, suggesting a worse-than-expected economic downturn for Indonesia. On aggregate, operating profit growth for our basket of stocks only reached 1.8 percent year-on-year (yoy) (Table 1), a deceleration when compared to 8.1 percent yoy growth reported in Q4 2013. On the bottom line, Q4 2014’s net profit growth of -3.2 percent yoy also deteriorated versus Q4 2013’s level of 0.7 percent.... The ugly: Auto, plantations, oil-related, coal-related and poultry In Table 4, the poultry sector was the worst performer, with weak DOC prices as well as poor margins attributed to US dollar-linked costs that suffered due to the rupiah’s depreciation. However, we note that we expect a turnaround to take place starting in Q1 2015, supported by DOC and broiler price recoveries. In the automotive sector, poor performance stemmed from unexciting volumes and weak margins as a result of escalating competition, which we expect to persist in Q1 2015. For the plantation sector, operating performance was dragged down by a weak average selling price (ASP) due to the lower global oil price and weak production volumes due to unsupportive weather conditions. Looking forward, we expect these negative trends in crude palm oil (CPO) to continue in Q1 2015. In the oil-related sector, the operating performance was mainly dragged down by lower oil prices and asset write-downs. For coal, Tambang Batubara Bukit Asam Tbk’s (PTBA’s) sales of coal with higher calorific value to PLN supported the sector’s operating performance, while a poor bottom-line performance resulted from impairment losses due to new accounting standards that resulted in the mark-to-market of assets. In sum, we remain cautious on the Indonesian market in the lead-up to the expected US Federal Reserve rate hike, particularly given the weak rupiah. For every 1 percent of the rupiah’s depreciation against the US dollar, we estimate that Indonesia’s market earning per share (EPS) growth will decline by 0.8 percent.....

Genting Plantations joins the big boys - It is now a full-fledged integrated planterBy: HANIM ADNAN Saturday, 28 March 2015; GENTING Plantations Bhd has finally joined the league of other vertically integrated top palm oil companies such as IOI Corp Bhd, Sime Darby Bhd and Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd following its recent maiden venture into the palm oil refinery business with Singapore-based global refiner, Musim Mas Group. Industry observers describe the venture as timely because it could help to reduce the high exposure to the volatile fluctuations in the crude palm oil (CPO) prices, which are trending lower to trade below RM2,200 per tonne currently. This explains why many upstream plantation players in Malaysia, including Genting Plantations, which produces mainly CPO, are inclined towards setting up refineries, which could provide steadier recurring income from value-added palm oil based products. Genting Plantations president and chief operating officer Yong Chee Kong tells StarBizWeek that the palm oil refinery that the group is setting up “is not solely for producing refined palm oil products for sale on a standalone basis.” “Instead, it will be a component of the group’s larger Genting Integrated Biorefinery Complex which is now being constructed in the Palm Oil Industrial Cluster (POIC) Lahad Datu, Sabah which is in the same vicinity as the proposed refinery collaboration with Musim Mas.”.........

1 April 2015: Malaysia 1 April GST pushed product sales in March and April exports prospects seen as weak; export taxes review for another round for Indonesia-Malaysia cuts? Indonesia biodiesel policy contested and margin reduced in midst plans for big boost for domestic demand; India market challenge

VEGOILS-Palm falls; Indonesia, Malaysia tax policies in focus - RTRS By Fergus Jensen 31-Mar-2015 19:31
* Indonesia sets CPO export tax for April at zero
* Palm oil to fall to 2,146 ringgit -technicals
* Malaysian GST seen weakening April exports, prices
The market is also focusing on Malaysia's plans to implement a goods and services tax that is seen affecting shipments and sales of the edible oil in April.
"A lot of the plantations are pushing their products out this month. When it comes to April our exports are expected to be weak," the trader said. "The GST will have a huge impact on our whole economy."... While palm oil itself is exempt from the GST, exporters and traders will need to apply for tax refunds from customs, potentially reducing their operations' liquidity, he said.... "From crude to the refinery they can claim back, but the process and duration for claims is unknown.".....

Govt may cut reference price of CPO Linda Yulisman/Tama Salim, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Thu, March 19 2015, 6:10 AM; As palm oil prices continue their downward trend in the global market, the government is considering lowering the price reference of crude palm oil (CPO) used as the basis in calculating export tax, the Trade Ministry’s head of trade policy research and development, Tjahya Widayanti, has said.Tjahya said the measure would be necessary as the volume of CPO had doubled recently and growth needed to be spurred in the downstream industry.“To fulfill domestic needs we need to charge export taxes and this is under discussion. We will lower the threshold,” she explained. At present, the government charges taxes on CPO shipments above US$750 a ton. However, in October last year, duties were cut to zero as CPO prices dipped below the reference price.In recent years, the progressive export tax regime has helped the domestic refining industry to grow, as it help keeps supply at home..... Even so, Derom predicted diminished exports to India this year if the price difference between soybean oil and palm oil continued to dwindle. Since 2008, there has been a $150 gap between palm oil and the more expensive soybean oil, prompting buyers to favor the former for use in everything from noodles to cosmetics. “Now the deficit has narrowed to just $50, because of India’s rising demand for vegetable oil,” he said.According to Derom, India’s need for oilseed has increased from 12.3 million tons to 12.6 million tons this year, buoyed by consumer demand.As a result, India’s CPO imports from Indonesia and Malaysia this year will decrease by around 700,000 tons to 8.25 million tons, while soybean oil and sunflower oil demand is expected to rise to 2.5 million tons and 1.3 million tons, respectively.....

New formula rolled out to lower biodiesel price Raras Cahyafitri, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Tue, March 24 2015, 5:40 AM; In a move to support a rise in the proportion of biofuel that must be added to diesel, the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry has introduced a new formula aiming to lower the price of the mixed substance purchased by distributors...... Under the new formula, the biodiesel index price will be calculated based on the crude palm oil (CPO) base price plus US$125 per ton. The added $125 is the cost of converting CPO into fatty acid methyl ester (FAME), which is used to produce biodiesel. The conversion cost is lower than a previous formula that put it at $188 per ton..... Coordinating Economic Minister Sofyan Djalil has also said that the government might ask CPO producers to earmark 15 percent of their output for domestic usage to ensure the certainty of the supply of CPO to support the mandatory biodiesel policy..... According to palm oil producers association GAPKI, Indonesia produced 31.5 million tons of CPO last year, rising by around 5 percent from a year earlier. Of the total production, 21.7 million tons were exported last year. If the 15 percent mandatory mix is fully implemented, the country will need 5.3 million kiloliters of biofuel to be blended into diesel. The figure is equal to CPO needs of 4.8 million tons.....

15 March 2015: Sugar falls to 6-year lows

Sugar Prices Fall to Near Six-Year Low on Weak Brazilian Currency - Real’s issues add more woes to market suffering from growing global oversupply By by Christian Berthelsen  Updated March 13, 2015 4:14 p.m. ET; “It’s been a complete debacle,” said Michael McDougall, a senior vice president at wholesale brokerage Newedge in New York. The market is watching the currency fall and betting on continued sugar sales from Brazil, he said. Sugar prices are down more than 30% since last summer. On Friday, the most actively traded May contract fell 3.9%, to 12.70 cents a pound on the ICE Futures U.S. exchange, their lowest level since April 8, 2009....

14 March 2015: Indonesia palm oil trade with India and Pakistan

Indonesia Greets India Rate Cut as Good for Exports By Tabita Diela & Arientha Primanita on 09:50 pm Mar 08, 2015; The Reserve Bank of India governor Raghuram Rajan. The Reserve Bank of India lowered its key interest rate by 25 basis points to 7.5 percent in February, the second time it has cut the rate this year. It followed that up two days later by easing requirements for home loans. Indonesian commodity producers and economists have hailed the Indian central bank’s rate cut as good for boosting exports from Southeast Asia’s biggest economy to one of its major markets....;
Jakarta. Indonesian commodity producers and economists have hailed the Indian central bank’s rate cut as good for boosting exports from Southeast Asia’s biggest economy to one of its major markets.
“In the past year, India has been the biggest importer of coal from Indonesia, after China’s imports slowed down,” said Supriatna Suhala, executive director of the Indonesian coal miners’ association, or APBI, adding that India’s lower interest rate was “good news” for Indonesia.... Market players have responded well to the structural reform in India. Even the direct investments are rushing into india,” he said, adding that this should, in turn, drive up demand for commodities from Indonesia.
That includes palm oil, of which Indonesia is the world’s biggest producer and India its biggest export market.... Shipments of the palm oil and palm kernels to India fell 17 percent in 2014 to 5.1 million metric tons, according to the Indonesian association of palm oil producers, or Gapki.
“There’s an indication that India will boost its vegetable oil imports [...] but we have to compete with other countries as well such as Malaysia,” said Fadhil Hasan, the Gapki executive director.

Indonesian Entrepreneur Delegation Heads to Karachi By Jakarta Globe on 11:10 pm Feb 24, 2015 Jakarta. A group of 20 Indonesian entrepreneurs led by Mufti Hamka Hasan, vice chairman of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, or Kadin, is slated to attend  the Pakistan Expo 2015, a business and trade show, which kicks off in Karachi on Thursday and runs through March 1.
According to a press release from the Pakistani Embassy in Jakarta, the Indonesian delegates represent Kadin Indonesia, Kadin Jakarta, the Indonesian Fruits and Vegetables Importers and Exporters Association and leading Indonesian companies from a variety of sectors.
Pakistan’s bilateral trade with Indonesia surged from $466.5 million in 2004 to  $2.207 billion in 2014. .. “For the first time in history, Indonesia-Pakistan bilateral trade crossed the $2 billion mark in only a year — the same year the Indonesia Pakistan preferential trade agreement came into effect,” the embassy said.... The trade deal has also allowed Pakistan to bring in palm oil from Indonesia at a cheaper rate, boosting imports from $839 million in 2013 to $1377 million in 2014, according to the embassy....

28 February 2015: FGV issues go beyond accounting standards - The Star

FGV’s ills go beyond accounting standards Saturday, 28 February 2015; FELDA Global Ventures Holdings Bhd’s (FGV) worst enemy is turning out to be the new accounting standards, so say the top executives of the plantation giant that draws more attention for its political prowess than commercial interest..... But is this really the case, or is the suffering of the plantation company now due to the lack of medication and care rendered to the plantation assets and related investments when it was under Felda? And is it because FGV is viewed as a political entity rather than a listed company?
Right from the beginning, FGV was a tricky listing proposition because it had some elements that would not have gone down well by normal commercial standards. An example is the age profile of its trees, which is 20 years and above that forms some 50% of its total plantation assets.... It had a downstream crushing plant in Canada that was bleeding so bad that it brought down the entire operations of the division. Any other ordinary plantation group would have replanted the ageing trees and sold the Canadian crushing plant long before going for a listing. But no, this did not apply to FGV.... No matter how professionally the management of FGV conducts its business, it will always be associated with the Felda settlers, who form the bastion of support for the Barisan Nasional ruling coalition and decide the fate of some 54 parliamentary and 92 state seats.... FGV had raised proceeds of some RM4.5bil from its listing in 2012. It acquired a few assets and is left now with some RM446mil. One of the largest purchases was Asian Plantations Ltd, amounting to RM568mil....

17 February 2015: KLK 1Q2014 earnings - unrealized gain on derivative contract but oleochemical business challenges on synthetic alcohol price drops affect fatty alcohol and surfactant business, outlook for lower profit in FY2015 from palm oil business

KLK issues profit warning amid weak palm oil prices Tuesday, 17 February 2015; KUALA LUMPUR: Plantation group Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd (KLK), which saw its net profit fall 26.8% to RM214.2mil in the first quarter ended Dec 31, 2014, expects profit from its palm oil business for the current financial year ending Sept 30 (FY15), to be lower than that of last financial year on weaker prices.... “The current palm oil price is buoyed by the weak ringgit and tight supply. However, the palm oil price will be affected by the current high soybean production,” it said.
In addition, KLK said the current low petroleum price had affected the fatty alcohol and surfactant businesses of its oleochemical division.... However, the recognition of an unrealised gain of RM26.3mil arising from the changes in fair value on outstanding derivative contracts had mitigated the decline in profit.... Even though revenue was 11.8% higher at RM1.41bil, the results of this sector were affected by the negative margins from the fatty alcohol and surfactant businesses. The low petroleum price had made synthetic alcohol very competitive and destabilised fatty alcohol price.
The oleochemical division’s profit dropped 61.3% to RM28.8mil while and the other manufacturing units reported a lower profit of RM706,000....

16 February 2015: Update: surprise move to keep zero export tax for March. Reuters reports trader bearish view on mooted March export tax for Malaysia, aggressive price movement on pre-Lunar New Year buying, India refiners switching to sunflower and soyoil; IOI 2Q profit down on unrealised forex losses on forex forward contracts and large US$ borrowings on Ringgit weakness; Matto Grosso prohibits planting of second-crop soybeans and increases time without re-growth

UPDATE 1-Malaysia surprises by keeping crude palm oil exports tax free; KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 16 (Reuters) - Malaysia has kept tax on exports of crude palm oil at zero for March, a government circular showed on Monday, extending a duty-free policy held since October. The move, which is likely to underpin prices, comes as a surprise as Malaysia's plantation industries and commodities minister said last week the country was planning to resume taxing exports from March...
VEGOILS-Palm dips on Malaysian export tax, Lunar New Year lull 1FCPOc3 - Reuters, By Fergus Jensen 13-Feb-2015 18:46; JAKARTA, Feb 13 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures edged down on Friday as the market digested recent news of Malaysia's plans to re-impose taxes on palm oil exports and traders prepared for the Lunar New Year long weekend next week.... "Come March they will be imposing taxes, so that piece of news is actually bearish," a trader with a foreign brokerage in Kuala Lumpur said referring to news on Malaysia's plans to resume taxing exports of crude palm oil in March that were seen supporting prices on Thursday... "One of the main reasons for the aggressive movement of late is the buying up of palm oil for the festive season, because during the holiday most of the plantations will be closed and there will be no production," the trader said.... Top buyer India's palm oil imports in January dropped more than one fifth from a month earlier to 658,670 tonnes as refiners increased overseas purchases of sunflower and soyoil....

IOI’s 2Q profit plunges 96% on unrealised forex losses By Shalini Kumar /   | February 13, 2015 : 6:19 PM MYT; For the resource-based manufacturing segment, profit came in 19% lower at RM215 million from RM265 million previously, due mainly to lower margin from the oleo-chemicals sub-segment.... On prospects, IOI expects CPO prices to hover within the range of RM2,150 to RM2,370 per tonne over the next two months, underpinned by the wet-weather induced lower production and lower stock levels, but capped by the record high soybean production.... "Going forward, our Indonesian plantation subsidiary is expected to increase its fresh fruit bunch production substantially due to the young age profile of its trees.... "In the resource-based manufacturing segment, the group expects its specialty oils and fats and oleo-chemicals sub-segments to perform satisfactorily given the resilient demand from both the food and oleo-chemicals sectors," it said in a Bursa Malaysia filing this evening....

Analysts also note in addition to unrealised fair value loss in foreign currency forward contracts in the manufacturing division, an unrealised translation loss on foreign borrowings of RM273.6mil.  IOI has US$476.4mil borrowings; most of its borrowings are in US$. Ambank notes that "Core manufacturing profit margin would have shrunk from 7.8% in 1HFY14 to 6.0% in 1HFY15. The erosion in margins can be attributed to the refining and oleochemical segments."

MT prohibits planting of second-crop soybeans and increases time without re-growth  11/02/2015
MT prohibits planting of second-crop soybeans and increases time without cultivation. Mato Grosso's soybean farmers are forbidden to make the second crop of soybeans -- called off-season. They must follow a longer period for the fallowing --períod without re-growth soybean plants. The decision was taken by the Economic Development offices and Family Agriculture and Indea (agriculture Defense Institute of Mato Grosso).

14 February 2015: Malaysia to resume export duty I March, details on 16 Feb

UPDATE 1-Malaysia to resume taxing palm oil exports in March By Yantoultra Ngui  Thu Feb 12, 2015 1:27am EST; KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 12 (Reuters) - Malaysia will resume taxing exports of crude palm oil in March, a minister said on Thursday, after scrapping the duty for five months in a bid to spur demand and reduce bloated stockpiles. "After studying various scenarios ... the government has decided that the export tax regime will continue from March," Malaysian plantation industries and commodities minister Douglas Uggah Embas told reporters. Uggah said the tax rate would depend on palm oil prices, adding that the government would announce details on the tax policy on Feb. 16....

India's Jan palm oil imports drop, soyoil surge-trade body Fri Feb 13, 2015 2:29pm IST
* Soyoil imports surge 131 pct, sunflower oil up 3 pct m/m
* Soyoil imports could rise in Feb too on lower soybean crushing
* Malaysia export duty from March could up Feb palm oil imports (Adds details, quotes)
MUMBAI, Feb 13 (Reuters) - India's palm oil imports in January dropped more than a fifth from a month earlier to 658,670 tonnes as refiners increased overseas purchases of sunflower and soyoil, data from the Solvent Extractors' Association of India (SEA) showed on Friday.

10 February 2015: Malaysia palm oil sales decreased 22 percent to 1.18 million metric tons

Ambank notes: Palm oil exports fell by 22.1% from 1.5mil tonnes in December 2014 to 1.18mil tonnes in January 2015. Against January 2014, palm oil exports declined by 13.4%. Exports of palm oil to China shrank by 29.3% YoY in January 2015 while India’s imports eased by 15.4%. After stocking up ahead of the hike in import duties late last year, India’s palm oil purchases are softening. 

Palm Oil Shipments From Malaysia Tumble Most in Seven Years 'By' Ranjeetha Pakiam 4:29 PM AWST  February 10, 2015; (Bloomberg) -- Palm oil exports in Malaysia, the world’s biggest producer after Indonesia, slumped the most in seven years in January as a plunge in energy prices and record global oilseed supply cut demand.... Sales decreased 22 percent to 1.18 million metric tons from a month earlier, the Malaysia Palm Oil Board said in Kuala Lumpur on Tuesday. That’s the biggest drop since January 2008 and the least shipped since February 2011, MPOB data show. The median estimate in a Bloomberg survey published Feb. 6 was for a 15 percent decline to 1.29 million tons. Imports fell 0.5 percent to 89,908 tons, according to board data....

20 January 2015: Indonesia LC mandatory from April to increase export earnings and get accurate records on commodity sales, palm oil inventories climb as exports drop 14% versus 12% output slowing, Pelindo to develop Kuala Tanjung Port and challenge Singapore transshipment. Retail investors active in local futures exchanges.

Small-time traders drive Southeast Asia futures volumes by Jeremy Grant January 27, 2015 8:59 am
High in a building in central Kuala Lumpur, not far from the twin Petronas Towers that dominate the Malaysian capital’s skyline, staff at Oriental Pacific Futures are busy broking futures for some of the group’s roughly 1,000 clients... In Thailand, retail investors accounted for 55 per cent of volume last year on the local futures exchange. Brokers say that the high proportion of retail participation in Asia’s derivatives markets is down to speculative appetite among ordinary investors in many Asian countries....

Palm Oil Inventories Climb in Indonesia as Exports Tumble By Eko Listiyorini on 09:10 pm Jan 21, 2015; Palm oil stockpiles in Indonesia, the world’s largest supplier, probably expanded to a four-month high in December after a rally in prices curbed demand and exports tumbled the most since April.... Reserves may have jumped 8.9 percent to 2.45 million metric tons from 2.25 million tons in November, according to the median of estimates from four planters and refiners and one analyst compiled by Bloomberg. Shipments may have declined 14 percent to 1.97 million tons, while output may have dropped 12 percent to 2.07 million tons, the lowest level since February, median estimates show.

L/C required for exports of key commodities Linda Yulisman, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Fri, January 16 2015, 9:18 AM . A new regulation set to take effect in April will require exporters of the country’s key commodities to use letters of credit (L/C) in their overseas shipments, a move that will help generate a reliable record of export earnings. The rule, issued by the Trade Ministry last week, is set to affect four primary commodities: coal; palm oil and palm-kernel oil; oil and gas; and minerals, including tin. On average these items accounted for 41 percent of overall exports in the five years from 2009 to 2013 with an average of US$71.04 billion a year, according to the ministry’s statistics.“By demanding the application of L/C in exports, we want to increase export earnings and at the same time get accurate records, particularly from sales of natural resources,” Trade Minister Rachmat Gobel said in a press conference on Wednesday evening. Based on the rule, the prices in the L/C should reflect actual transaction value. It also stipulates that without the letters, overseas delivery cannot be executed.

Pelindo has high hopes for Kuala Tanjung Khoirul Amin, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Thu, January 22 2015, 10:07 AM . With investments of US$1.2 billion, North Sumatra’s Kuala Tanjung Port will become one of the world’s largest ports, according to state port operator Pelindo I.Pelindo I president director Bambang Eka Cahyana said on Wednesday that Kuala Tanjung Port could reach 30th position in the Best Port List.Located in Batubara regency, home to resources such as oil palm and aluminum, Kuala Tanjung Port would become a transit hub for shipments to Europe, he said, adding that with its modern facilities, and strategic location, the port could even compete with Singapore’s largest port.“Once the port has been fully developed, then many large ships heading to Europe can transit via Kuala Tanjung Port instead of via Singapore,” Bambang said...

19 January 2015: Palm oil price expected to be volatile

Rising Palm Output Seen Suppressing Prices With Crude Slump By Ranjeetha Pakiam  Jan 19, 2015 5:14 PM GMT+0800... Rising production and reserves of palm oil combined with the slump in crude will suppress prices, said a minister in Malaysia, the second-largest supplier of the tropical oil used in food and biofuels. Futures fell.... While futures have rallied 20 percent from a five-year low in September after Malaysia’s worst floods in four decades, prices still declined 15 percent decline in 2014. That’s the third drop in four years as stockpiles in Malaysia reached a 21-month high and U.S. farmers harvested a record soybean crop, used to make an alternative oil. Crude prices dropped almost 50 percent last year, eroding demand for biofuel.... The “price will continue to be volatile” during the first half of 2015, Choo Yuen May, director-general of the Malaysian Palm Oil Board, said at the conference. Production will probably climb to 20.09 million tons this year, said Ramli Abdullah, the director of MPOB’s economics and industry development division. Output in 2014 reached an all-time high of 19.67 million tons, board data show.....

8 January 2015: Ringgit weakness

Weak ringgit translates to higher revenue for oil palm planters Wednesday, 7 January 2015
PETALING JAYA: The weaker ringgit is a boon for oil palm planters. At RM2,284 a tonne yesterday, crude palm oil (CPO) futures contract on Bursa Derivatives, which is quoted in ringgit, has risen 18.4% from the recent low in August. Over the same period, rival soybean oil gained 1.7%. Palm oil and soybean oil are substitutes and their price movements usually track each other.
But as the ringgit depreciates and the US dollar appreciates, palm oil’s appeal to cost-conscious consumers increases. Malaysia ranks second after Indonesia as the world’s top palm oil exporter.
The ringgit slumped 0.65% yesterday to 3.5567 against the US dollar, it weakest level in more than five years. The local currency has fallen 12.7% against the greenback since the beginning of September.....

7 January 2015: India raises import duties, Indonesia waiver continues

India Raises Import Duty on Palm Oil as Indonesia Keeps Waiver By Pratik Parija and Prabhudatta Mishra  Dec 26, 2014 5:10 PM GMT+0800 ; India, the world’s biggest buyer of palm oil, raised import duties on crude and refined varieties in a move to protect farmers from declining oilseed prices. ...  The tax on crude palm oil was raised to 7.5 percent from 2.5 percent, while the duty on refined grades was increased to 15 percent from 10 percent, the Central Board of Excise & Customs said on its website in a notice dated Dec. 24. The increase may counter the benefits shippers were expecting to gain from the scrapping of export taxes by Indonesia and Malaysia, which account for about 86 percent of world supply. Indonesia extended today its zero duty for a fourth month to January, while Malaysia has already prolonged its duty exemption through February. Both countries are seeking to cut reserves in a year of unprecedented oilseed supply.... “The duty difference will help value addition” in India, B.V. Mehta, executive director of the Solvent Extractors’ Association, said by phone. “Rising imports are hurting domestic farmers as they’re not getting remunerative prices.”
Palm imports rose for a fifth month in November from a year earlier, the association said Dec. 12. Purchases in the year started Nov. 1 may rise 13 percent to 8.75 million tons, Dorab Mistry, director at Godrej International Ltd., said last month......

22 December 2014: Malaysia CPO exports duty free to end Feb 2015

Malaysia to keep crude palm oil exports tax-free until end-Feb: govt official 19 Dec11:23 PM by Reuters; [KUALA LUMPUR] Malaysia will keep exports of crude palm oil duty-free until end-February, a senior government official said on Friday, as the world's second-largest grower tries to boost demand and cut stockpiles that have ballooned to a 21-month high.
Tax-exempted exports for a sixth straight month may provide some relief to benchmark Malaysian palm prices that have tumbled 20 per cent this year on fears of record supplies of rival oilseeds and a rout in crude oil markets.

5 November 2014:

Palm Enters Bull Market as Soybeans Rally, Biofuels Drive Demand  By Ranjeetha Pakiam  Nov 3, 2014 6:39 PM GMT+0800 ; "Palm oil entered a bull market on expectations that an increase in the biodiesel mandate in Malaysia and the biggest monthly rally in soybeans since 2012 would boost demand for the world’s most used cooking oil... Futures closed at 2,336 ringgit ($704) a metric ton on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives, more than 20 percent above the 1,929 ringgit settlement on Aug. 29, meeting the common definition of a bull market. Prices advanced 1.3 percent today to settle at the highest level for a most-active contract since July 11.... Palm rallied from a five-year low as Indonesia and Malaysia scrapped export taxes to lure buyers and trim inventories amid a global glut in cooking oils. Soybeans rose 15 percent last month as rain slowed harvesting in the U.S. and planting was delayed in Brazil...."

2 November 2014:

UPDATE 1-India considers raising import taxes on vegetable oils By Mayank Bhardwaj Mon, Oct 27 08:58 AM EDT * May hike duties on crude, refined vegoils by 5 pct points * Finance Ministry to take final call * Falling inflation would make move easier * Indian vegoil refiners operating at 40 pct capacity -trade * Extension of sugar export incentives under consideration (Writes through, wraps in sugar export incentives);

13 October 2014: Malaysia extends CPO tax-free exports to end 2014

Malaysia Seeks to Boost Palm Oil by With Tax-Free Extension  By Ranjeetha Pakiam  Oct 13, 2014 9:28 AM GMT+0800; "Malaysia’s extension of tax-free exports of crude palm oil until the year-end is intended to support prices and curb the buildup of reserves, said Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Douglas Uggah Embas... Futures lost 18 percent this year amid a global glut in edible oil supplies, hurting producers’ profits in Malaysia and Indonesia, the two largest suppliers. The Malaysian government initially waived the export tax for September and October after prices dropped to a five-year low, and Indonesia’s tariff was also set to zero for this month, boosting competition. While some Malaysian growers including Sime Darby Bhd. (SIME) welcomed the extension, the decision was criticized by a refiners’ group...."

29 September 2014: Export taxes cut to zero on lower prices

Top Palm Oil Growers Scrap Export Tariffs in Buyer Battle By Yoga Rusmana, Eko Listiyorini and Ranjeetha Pakiam  Sep 26, 2014 6:27 PM GMT+0800; "The world’s two biggest palm oil producers cut export taxes on most shipments to zero, seeking to lure buyers amid a global glut in edible oils that sent prices to a five-year low.... Crude shipments of the most-used cooking oil from Indonesia will not attract any tariff in October, down from 9 percent this month, said Bayu Krisnamurthi, the deputy trade minister. It’s the first time since December 2009 that the rate has been zero in Indonesia, the biggest producer, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Malaysia, the second-largest, earlier this month made exports tax-free for two months through October.... “There’s plenty of stock of vegetable oils more broadly around the world and these prices are going to have to trade against each other in the relative sense to effectively buy demand away from the other oils,” Wayne Gordon, a commodity analyst at UBS AG in Singapore, said by phone today. “In many ways palm oil is hitting against the threshold of where it’s mostly competitive against other vegetable oils.”

M’sia eyes capturing 70% of China's palm oil imports  by tho xin yi Updated: Monday September 29, 2014 MYT 5:50:37 PM; SHANGHAI: Malaysia aims to capture a bigger share of China’s palm oil imports, according to Plantation Industries and Commodities minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas. He said Malaysia currently accounted for 58.8% of the total imports, and the target was to increase the figure to 70%. “China is Malaysia’s largest export destination for palm oil products, taking up 20.4% of Malaysia’s global exports,” he said when opening the Malaysia-China Palm Oil Trade Fair & Seminar (POTS) here recently....