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 Mahamad Rodzi Abdul Ghani
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 The Star
 Minister: Government may revoke some biodiesel licences

7/9/06 (The Star)  - SINGAPORE: Malaysia may revoke some of the 52 licences it issued to companies to develop biofuel as they aren't committed to the business. 

“I think some of them are not really serious'' about investing, Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Peter Chin Fah Kui said in an interview Tuesday. 

They'd have “reasonable time'' before the licences were withdrawn, he said, without giving a specific timeframe or naming any companies. 

Malaysia, the world's largest producer of palm oil, is boosting the use of alternative energy sources such as biofuel after crude oil prices tripled since 2002, and the cost of capping fuel prices increased. 

Crude oil reached a record US$78.40 a barrel in New York in July, making biofuel more competitive. 

Malaysia wants to cut its annual imports of petroleum diesel by 500,000 tonnes a year by encouraging vehicles to use a mix of palm oil and diesel, the Finance Ministry said in its 2006/07 Economic Report. 

If biofuel use were made mandatory, domestic consumption of palm oil would rise by 500,000 tonnes to 1.3 million tonnes a year, Chin said, without confirming whether such a move was planned. 

Three companies, including Golden Hope Plantations Bhd, had been appointed to run government-owned biodiesel plants in Port Klang, Chin said. Each plant could produce 60,000 tonnes of biodiesel a year, which would be for export, he said. – Bloomberg 

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