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 Mahamad Rodzi Abdul Ghani
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 Non-edible oil imports jump 80 per cent

Mumbai, India, April, 17 (Financial Express) - Galloping imports ofedible oils seem to be slowing down, after the government raised theduties in the last Budget. However, the import of non-edible oils havejumped almost 80 per cent during the five month period to March 2001.While the edible oil import have been higher over the past few months, theoverall jump each month appears sliding compared to the previous year�sfigures, and more prominently during March 2001, which shows imports lowerthan last year.During March 2001, the total import of edible oils has slipped to 284,589tn against 307,724 tn in March 2000, even when during the five monthperiod to March 2001 the total edible oil imports have jumped 20 per centto 18,86,973 tn from 15,69,505 tn during the same period last year.Thetotal import of non-edible oil during the five month period to March 2001is 133,663 tn against 74,482 tn imported during the same period last year-- an increase of 79 per cent. During March 2001, this figure is placed at17,016 tn. ��Thanks to the government�s policy of raising import duty,this is for the first time in two years that import of edible oil hasslowed down,�� said The Solvent Extractors� Association (SEA) of India.After the duty hike, the ratio of crude to refined oil imports has tiltedin favour of refined oil mainly due to the reduction in CPO imports.Import of crude palm oil (CPO) has decreased to 94,658 tn against 143,126tn in February 2001.Last year, the overall ratio of imported crude and refined edible oil wasaround 34:66. This year this has almost reversed to refined oils importslower at 40 per cent against that of crude oil imports being 60 per centAlthough the ratio of palm oil and soft oil has remained stagnant comparedto last year, the import of RBD palmolein has gone down from 10,11,000 tnto 758,000 tn but compensated by increase in import of CPO from 137,000 tnto 653 tn during the first five months of the oil year.Llower imports of palm oil has its impact on the domestic market. Theprice of palmolein in the Mumbai for example, has jumped to around Rs 240per 10 kg from Rs 209 on February 28 this year and Rs 205 on November 1,2001.


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