Agri Business

Palm oil import up, soft oil down marginally in Nov-Jan quarter of 2020-21

Our Bureau Mangaluru | Updated on February 12, 2021

CPO import jumped 24% in Q1 of oil year 2020-21 on duty cut from 37.5% to 27.5% with effect from November 27

Import of palm oil jumped by 8 per cent in the first quarter of the oil year 2020-21.

According to data on import of vegetable oils (both edible and non-edible) for January 2021, compiled by Solvent Extractors’ Association (SEA) of India, the import of palm oil (which includes CPO, RBD palmolein, and crude palm kernel oil) increased to 2.17 million tonnes (mt) during the November-January quarter of the oil year 2020-21 against two mt during the corresponding period of the previous oil year, registering a growth of 8.01 per cent.

Also read: Palm oil gains for third day on expectations of weak January supply

A press release by BV Mehta, Executive Director of SEA, said that the import of crude palm oil (CPO) jumped 24 per cent in the first quarter of the oil year 2020-21 due to duty reduction from 37.5 per cent to 27.5 per cent with effect from November 27.

Soft oils marginally down

He said the import of soft oils decreased marginally to 1.32 mt during Q1 of the oil year 2020-21 against 1.36 tonnes in the corresponding period of the previous year due to lower import of sunflower oil.

Added to this, the import of soybean oil was the lowest in January as a strike by truckers in Argentina seriously affected loading during November. This resulted in lesser vessels of soybean oil arriving in India during January.

However, he said, the Union Budget presented on February 1 has restructured the vegetable oil import policy.

Though the basic import duty on CPO was lowered by 12.5 points to 15 per cent, this was more than offset by a newly introduced 17.5 per cent of agriculture infrastructure and development cess which is earmarked to improve agriculture infrastructure.

“Taken together, the total import duty on CPO increased from 30.25 per cent to 35.75 per cent. Soya oil and sunflower oil imports are now subject to a 20 per cent cess but the basic duty decreased from 35 to 15 per cent, keeping the effective tariff unchanged at 38.5 per cent. The duty advantage of CPO thus narrowed from 8.25 to 2.75 percentage points,” he said.


Countrywise imports

Indonesia and Malaysia are the major suppliers of palm oil to India. During November-January of 2020-21, Malaysia was the major supplier of CPO at 1.23 mt followed by Indonesia at 0.85 mt. India imported 0.64 mt of crude soybean degummed oil from Argentina, and 0.54 mt of crude sunflower oil from Ukraine followed by 82,673 tonnes from Russia.

Also read: Lack of announcement on edible oil mission disappoints sector

Total veg oil import

The total import of vegetable oils (which includes edible oil and non-edible oil) stood at 1.09 mt during January 2021 compared to 1.19 mt in January 2020, registering a decline of around 8 per cent. The total vegetable oil import during January 2021 includes 1.07 mt of edible oils and 22,034 tonnes of non-edible oils.

However, the overall import of vegetable oils during November-January 2021 stood at 3.55 mt against 3.45 mt in the corresponding period of the previous oil year, registering a growth of 3 per cent.

Published on February 12, 2021

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