NEW DELHI: India’s palm oil imports rose 14.96% in June from the previous month as the world’s biggest importer of vegetable oils stepped up purchases from Malaysia, Thailand and Papua New Guinea to offset the impact of export curbs imposed by Indonesia.
In June, India imported 590,921 tonnes of palm oil, the most widely consumed edible oil in the country as well as globally, up from 514,022 tonnes in May, Mumbai-based trade body the Solvent Extractors’ Association (SEA) of India said in a statement.
Indonesia, the world’s biggest producer and exporter of palm oil, on April 28 halted exports of the product to control soaring prices at home. Jakarta allowed exports to resume from May 23 but put in place policies to safeguard domestic supplies.
India’s June palm oil imports were in line with the vegetable oil industry’s expectation of a 15% jump in overseas purchases.
The higher palm oil purchases by India could support Malaysian palm oil futures.
Malaysian palm oil futures plunged more than 6% on Wednesday due to weak July exports, while fears of renewed Covid-19 curbs in China sparked a selloff in rival Dalian oils.
In July, India’s palm oil imports are set to jump to the highest in 10 months because of a significant price correction, as Indonesia allows more tropical oil exports.
Sunflower oil imports jumped to 119,558 tonnes in June, up from 118,482 tonnes in May. The SEA said the country’s soyoil imports in June fell to 230,992 tonnes from 373,043 tonnes a month ago.
India buys palm oil mainly from Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand, while soyoil is primarily sourced from Argentina, Brazil and the United States. India imports sunflower oil from Ukraine and Russia.