Strategic plan needed on EU’s reaction to palm oil

By SHAHEERA AZNAM SHAH / Pic By MUHD AMIN NAHARUL

Malaysia should come up with a strategic and comprehensive plan to address any adverse reaction from European countries on palm oil, said Deputy Primary Industries Minister Datuk Seri Shamsul Iskandar Mohd Akin (picture).

“While we are promoting the usage of palm oil domestically, we do agree that a strategic plan has to be made in terms of dealing with the different views on the biodiesel by some European countries.

“It has been addressed by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad at the 73rd UN (United Nation) General Assembly, which gives a clear message that we are not here just to sell palm oil, but we are also committed to preserving our environment,” Shamsul Iskandar said at the National Seminar on Palm Oil Milling, Refining, Environment and Quality (POMREQ) 2018 in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

He added that the continuous engagement with stakeholders will help to spur the confidence in Malaysia’s palm oil market.

Commenting on the fall of palm oil prices, Shamsul Iskandar said the government is putting all efforts to keep the market moving at the domestic and international levels.

“The decline in palm oil prices is not something new to Malaysia as it is a cycle. We have dropped to as low as RM1,500 in Nov 2008,” he said.

He expressed hope that the implementation of the B10 biodiesel programme next year would improve the prices of palm oil.

On Monday, the Malaysian palm oil futures recorded a heavy fall in more than 21 months due to Indonesia’s decision to reduce its export levy to zero from US$50 (RM209.50) a tonne.