Business

Thailand, others export N368.8bn crude palm oil

HUGE

Industrial and domestic consumption of palm oil is estimated at 2.7 million tonnes

 

Despite government’s restriction policy, inflow of palm oil from Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia to Nigeria has reached 1.2 million tonnes with a market value of N368.8 billion ($791.05million).

 

New Telegraph’s findings revealed that the shipment of the produce to the country increased by 24.5 per cent between 2018 and October 2020 despite increase in price from $601 to $650 per tonne within one year.

The country’s manufacturing firms sourced the produce from Asian countries to meet annual industrial and domestic demand estimated at 2.7 million tonnes.

 

The country imported 397,000 tonnes in 2018 and 400,000 tonnes, 2019, according to the United States Department of Trade (USDT) data. Between January and September, 2020, a total of 420,000 tonnes has been imported, leading to an increase of 14.29 per cent from 2019 shipment.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had banned importers from accessing foreign exchange for the produce through the official window. In the last two months, some 52,699 metric tonnes of crude palm oil were discharged at Lagos and Tincan Island ports.

 

Data by the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA)’s shipping position indicated that Stella Theresa arrived the Apapa Bulk Terminal Limited (ABTL), Lagos Port with 5,000. Also, MV Philoxenia has discharged 12,699 at the terminal, while MV Gulf Mishref offload 25,000 tonnes at ENL Consortium terminal as Josepdam terminal at Tincan Island Port took delivery of 10,000 tonnes from Ardmore Sea Lion. Between July and August, the country took delivery of 72,110 tonnes of CPO valued at N13.47 billion ($36.9 million) from four ships.

 

It would be recalled that CBN had planned to encourage investment by offering low interest loans to farmers for oil palm cultivation and erecting barriers on crude palm oil imports.

 

However, incessant imports of the produce have affected Nigeria plans to invest N200 billion ($500 million) to increase its palm oil production from around 600,000 tonnes a year to five million tonnes a year between 2020 and 2027.

 

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Trade and Investment had said that Nigeria’s palm oil estate would be increased to six million hectares to deliver 225,000 full time jobs and at least 450,000 seasonal jobs. In 2019, about $500 million was spent by importers to ship 600,000 tons of palm oil into the country from top global producer.

 

Data by the Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) revealed that the country’s crude palm imports from Malaysia increased to 286,964 metric tonnes in 2019 from 242,388 tonnes in 2018, leading to an increase of 44,576 tonnes on a yearon- year basis. In the first three quarters of the year, the country imported palm oil at a total of 350,000 tonnes from Asian countries.

 

Also, statistics from NPA’s shipping position indicated that the 248,388 metric tonnes of the produce were ferried to the country between January and May, 2019 as import attracts 10 per cent duty and 25 per cent levy in the country.

 

It would be recalled that Nigeria palm oil imports have continued to rise because Nigeria’s CPO has remained less competitive to the imported ones owing to high production cost among others. Early this year, Indonesia increased its palm oil output to increase by 1.5 million tonnes as part of efforts to boost its export to Nigeria and other countries.

 

It has also raised its outlook for the palm oil price to an average $600 per tonne in January to June from an estimate of $580 per tonne.

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