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News 28371 to News 28380 of about 28828 news within page 2838
28371. 25/10/2001
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 23 (Bernama) -- Export of palm oil to Pakistan and WestAsian region will continue as the government is willing to provideassistance to exporters in tackling the shipping disruptions following theSept 11 attacks on the United States, said Primary Industries Minister,Datuk Seri Dr Lim Keng Yaik.
28372. 25/10/2001
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 24 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil extended its rally onWednesday on expectations that the government will subsidise risinginsurance costs for oils shipments to Pakistan and the Gulf.Insurance premiums spiked after the U.S.-led strikes on Afghanistan.Malaysian Primary Industries Minister Lim Keng Yaik said on Tuesdayinsurance surcharges for a tonne of palm oil to the war-risk areas hadrisen $1-$5 and exporters were told of the exact difference only 48 hoursbefore their cargo reached port.Lim said he planned to ask Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad's cabinet,which meets every Wednesday, to subsidise the higher premiums if it could.News of Lim's proposal came an hour before the market closed on Tuesdayand pushed the benchmark third-month January contract up 18 ringgit.The contract was up another 14 ringgit at 947 ringgit ($249.21) a tonne atmidday on Wednesday. Volume was moderate at 911 tonnes.Sentiment was also helped by an overnight rise in U.S. soyoil futures,whose prices usually move in step with palm oil."But it had more to do with the insurance subsidy. People think theremight be some news on it soon," said a trader.Lim said on Tuesday that he expected Mahathir's cabinet to make a decisionon his proposal by next week.He said about 2.5 million tonnes, or 25 percent of Malaysia's palm oilexports, head to Pakistan and the Middle East.Dealers said market thinking was that there would be more exports to thewar-risk areas in the event of a subsidy, although the fundamentals ofsupply and demand would still rule.Trading in physical palm oil followed the trend set by the futures market.Crude palm oil for October was bid/asked at 860/870 ringgit a tonne in thesouthern region. The contract was traded at 855-860.November (south) was at 875/885 and traded at 870 to 875.The central region market for October was heard 865/875 and traded at 860to 865.November (central) was bid/asked at 880/885. No business was reported.Among refined products, November RBD palm oil was offered at $247.50 atonne and December at $252.50.Offers for November RBD olein were at $255 and December at $262.50.November RBD palm stearin was offered at $240 a tonne while November palmfatty acid distillate was offered at $212.50.
28373. 25/10/2001
24 October 2001 (BusinessTimes) - THE Government may consider subsidisinginsurance costs for shipments of palm oil to Pakistan and West Asianregion due to the increase in premiums following US strikes onAfghanistan.
28374. 25/10/2001
Wednesday, October 24, 2001 (The Star) - OLEOCHEMICALS manufacturerSouthern Acids (M) Bhd, which expects a decline in profit from itsmainstay business this year, is confident of turning around its healthcaredivision in the current year ending April 2002.According to its chairman Datuk Low Mong Hua, the loss-making healthcaredivision has shown favourable results in the 1st quarter of this year,earning about RM500,000.“We expect the division to get back into the black this year,’’ Low toldreporters after the company AGM in Klang yesterday.Low said, however, that the profit from the healthcare division this yearwould be marginal. The division suffered a loss of RM3.53mil last year.Southern Acids started the healthcare division with the setting up of SriKota Medical Centre (SKMC) in Klang in 1999.The medical centre, which recently recorded full occupancy, had started aneye laser centre on its premises under Centre for Sight Sdn Bhd six monthsago.On the group’s forecast of a decline in demand for oleochemical productsthis year against a sterling performance last year, Low said that theprojection was based on the general slowdown of the US economy.“Maybe it’s a little too early to make any forecast, we don’t know whatwill happen in the US next,’’ he said.The oleochemical division ac-hieved a pre-tax profit of RM-50.49mil in theyear ended April 30, 2001.On the progress of the group’s memorandum of understanding withIndonesia-based PT Pekebun Nusantara XIII, Low said that Southern Acidswas still finalising the terms and conditions for the proposed jointventure to build and manage a palm oil refinery.“We don’t expect the project to take off this year,’’ he said.On when the group would launch its Bandar Sawit township project, Low saidthe group had yet to overcome certain technical problems with theauthorities and the company was also not eager to embark on the project inthe immediate term due to the sluggish property market.He said the group planned to wait for the right time before launching the644.37-acre project located near Bukit Kemuning in Shah Alam.
28375. 23/10/2001
23 October 2001 (Business Times) - THE tax incentives proposed forresource-based industries including rubber and oil palm in the Budget 2002are expected to cause little impact on local plantation companies as themove will only benefit firms that plan to reinvest for expansion.According to analysts, the incentives are also more directed towards firmsinvolved in the downstream activities, such as oil palm refiners andrubber glove manufacturers, rather than plantation companies per se(except for those that own such facilities).Most of the analysts, however, still maintain an overweight rating for thesector which they view as “defensive and stable” amid the present economicslowdown.They also expect prices of crude palm oil (CPO) to strengthen towards theend of 2001 and early next year as the fundamentals are still strong.“The incentives announced during the Budget will not really affectplantation companies that much as I do not foresee many of themreinvesting in Malaysia,” an analyst from Arab-Malaysian Securities toldBusiness Times yesterday.Though many firms are interested to invest further in the country, theirplans have been hampered by the lack of sufficient, fertile landbankdomestically, she said.“If you look at the recent acquisitions in the palm oil industry, theywere largely done overseas, particularly in Indonesia,” she added.An analyst from Salomon Smith Barney (SSB), Ahmad Shariff, said plantationcompanies with manufacturing and refining facilities would benefit fromthe tax incentives announced by the Government last Friday.“But the impact is not going to be immediate; it would only happen whenthe companies start to reinvest,” he said.On a more general view, Ahmad said plantation is still a “very good,defensive sector” although there were slight worries about the situationin Afghanistan that might disrupt CPO shipments to West Asia, particularlyto Pakistan and India.“The fundamentals still point out to better prices of CPO,” he said.Ahmad also said that some recovery in CPO prices are likely to be seentowards the end of this year and early 2002, with the commodity’s priceexpected to average at RM1,100 per tonne for the whole of next year.An analyst from a local research firm said their forecast CPO price for2001 is at RM868 per tonne, with IOI Corp Bhd and PPB Oil Palms Bhd beingtheir favoured counters.“We like them because of their (low) PE, good growth and stability inincome,” she said.SSB’s Ahmad said IOI Corp is still one of the better plantation companiesas the group has more young oil palm trees which could produce higheryields compared to the others.On the Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange (KLSE) yesterday, IOI Corp closed foursen lower at RM3.08 while PPB Oil Palms eased four sen to RM1.80.The KLSE’s plantation sub-index also fell 8.56 points to 1,407.78, in linewith the lower Composite Index which dropped 5.93 points to 609.09.Out of the 39 companies which made up the plantation sub-index only threeended higher, while 17 closed softer and 19 ended unchanged.In the spot CPO market, Malaysia’s October South CPO closed unchanged atRM850 a tonne.In the Budget unveiled last week, the Government has proposed to grant taxincentives for companies in the rubber, oil palm and wood based industriesthat reinvest for expansion purposes in a move to increase domesticinvestment in resource based industries.Among others, relevant companies stand to enjoy pioneer status with taxexemption of up to 85 per cent of statutory income for a period of 5years, or an investment tax allowance of up to 80 per cent within a periodof 5 years.
28376. 23/10/2001
MEDAN, Indonesia, Oct 19 Asia Pulse - Demand for crude palm oil (CPO) ininternational markets is stable but the price is declining, producerssaid.Derom Bangun, chairman of the Indonesian palm oil producers (Gapki) saidCPO price declined from US$235 early October to US$226 per ton this week.Bangun said the price fall was caused not by the U.S.-Afghan conflict butby a larger supply of CPO from producers to the world market.In addition, the world's economic slowdown has dampened demand for CPO andits derivatives, he added.He said Indonesia's exports to India, the largest market for the country'sCPO, are stable.
28377. 23/10/2001
MATI, Davao Oriental-10/13/2001 (Philippine Daily) - The InternationalCopra Export Corp., which is one of the country's biggest coconut crudeoil exporters, said it is considering a mass layoff of its workers unlessthe price of copra, which has been falling in the last few years, does notimprove.Interco, which maintains three plants in Mindanao including one here, saidit is losing an average of P500 million a year since the crisis in thecoconut industry started."Definitely, we will be forced to cut significantly our workforce shouldthe downtrend continue in the next two years," Michael Ling, Intercopurchasing manager, said.Interco, he said, used to earn P1 billion per year.Ling said the crisis gripping the coconut industry is hardly addressedbecause "the government's intervention (to solve the crisis) is notenough."Interco is Davao Oriental's remaining big private employer after the DavaoTimber Corp. shut down its operations in the early 1980s. It currentlyemploys at least 150 people here.Another reason cited by Interco for the layoff is the unabated cutting ofcoconut trees, which resulted in a reduced supply of nuts."The government is helpless in stopping the massive cutting of coconuttrees. If this trend will continue in the next two years, we will reallybe forced to retrench our workers," Ling said.But coconut producers said they have no more choice left but to converttheir farms either into ricefields or mango plantations because of thevery low prices of copra.Even Mayor Francisco Rabat admitted he is diversifying his 400-hectarefarm while waiting for the coconut industry to recover."Diversify (the farm) so you can be helped. If the coconut will not helpyou, the other (crops) will. I am now very lucky with my pomelo," Rabatsaid.On the claims of Interco, Rabat said that "the oil mills are neveraffected (by the crisis) because they just buy copra, process it and sellit.""They always make money. It is the coconut producers who lose moneybecause right now the income of copra just goes to the laborers," he said.From a high of P20 per kilo until 1998, prices of copra plummeted to a lowof P4 per kilo. The reason cited for the sharp decrease was the worldmarket's shift to the use of palm oil."The world market prices of copra is very low because the other oilvegetable products are very substantial in production like the palm oil inMalaysia. They released an average of 8 million tons a year to the worldmarket and Indonesia, 5 million tons. How do you expect the coconutindustry to compete with that," Rabat said.Jonelito Vicente, officer in charge of the Philippine Coconut Authorityhere, said he expected the annual output of the coconut industry tofurther decrease in the coming years because the PCA is poised to stop itsfree fertilizers program because of lack of funds.He, however, denied there was massive cutting of coconut trees here.Vicente said there was even an increase in the area planted to coconut.Davao Oriental became the country's largest coconut producer when itsannual output reached 216,710 metric tons last year. But the PCA here saidthe figure is 40 percent lower than the same period in 1999. FerdinandZuasola, PDI Mindanao Bureau
28378. 23/10/2001
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 19 (Bernama) -- Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr MahathirMohamed said when presenting Budget 2002 at the Dewan Rakyat that thenation is endowed with fertile land can be utilised for the cultivation ofcrops and the rearing of livestock.
28379. 23/10/2001
23 October 2001 (Business Times) - MALAYSIA’S purchase of several mainbattle tanks (MBT) may come under a countertrade arrangement in which partof the payment may be made in the form of palm oil and palm oil products.Industry sources say the countertrade initiative is being looked into asone of the options available besides cash payments to help promote thecommodity’s standing overseas.“The countertrade can help promote palm oil in arms and weaponry-producingcountries such as Russia, Turkey, the UK, Italy, France and the US,” anindustry source told Business Times in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.“However, it is too soon to say. The agreement will be conducted ongovernment-to-government basis,” he said.He said, the purchase would also look at long term development programmessuch as transfer of technology, mutual maintenance programmes and otherdevelopment programmes rather than a one-off deal.Defence Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said Malaysia would buy theMBT as part of its efforts to boost the firepower of the Royal MalaysianArmy and beef up national security and defence.The purchase has been approved by the Government under the Eighth MalaysiaPlan (8MP) 2000-2005. Under the 8MP RM2.5 billion has been allocated forvarious development programmes for the Malaysian Armed Forces.He, however, refused to give details of the cost and other information,but it was learnt that the MBT would replace the Scorpions, the first tankbought by the Armed Forces more than 20 years ago.It is also understood that arms producers from countries such as Russia,Turkey, the UK, Italy, France and the US are being shortlisted.However, it is not immediately known whether the countertrade arrangementalso involves other purchases of defence equipment and weaponry.Najib said the arms purchase that had been approved included the 155mmtowed Howitzer G5 cannons from South Africa to be delivered by December,and multiple rocket launcher system from Brazil by early next year.Others include submarine, an air defence system and helicopters for thearmed forces under the 8MP.Najib said the order for the Howitzer G5 cannons and multiple rocketlaunch system were made early this year, while orders for the newsubmarine and air defence system would be made next year.The countertrade arrangement is not new for Malaysia.In 1994, Malaysia bought 18 MiG-29 Fulcrum fighter jets for a total ofUS$600 billion (US$1 = RM3.80)under an offset programme. It involved acash payment of US$450 million,palm oil and palm oil products (US$95million) and supply of other Malaysian products (US$55 million).The palm oil was to be delivered to Russia over a period of five yearswhich incidentally ends this year.Last month, US multinational, General Electric International signed aUS$60 million agreement with Keretapi Tanah Melayu Bhd involving thepurchase of 20 high-powered “Blue Tiger”.Under the deal, the locomotives are to be delivered beginning April 2003in exchange for 200,000 tonnes of palm oil and palm oil products valued atUS$60 million, to be delivered by the Pasir Gudang Edible Oils Group.The Government is also eyeing fighter jets from both the US and Russia.The Royal Malaysian Air Force is evaluating two multi-role combataircraft, Boeing Military and Missile Systems’ F/A-18E/F strike fightersdubbed the Super Hornets.The Russian-made Sukhoi Su-30MK multi-role long-range twin-seater fighterbomber which is priced at about US$35 million a piece is also underevaluation.Primary Industries Minister Datuk Seri Dr Lim Keng Yaik had said earlythis month his ministry was attempting to squeeze palm oil into 20 percent of the payment in Malaysia’s proposed purchase of the figher jets.
28380. 23/10/2001
23 October 2001 (Business Times) - THE 10 sen per litre increase in petroland diesel prices will have a chain reaction in terms of higher costs oftransport which will lead to an increase in the price of goods andservices. Inflationary pressures with the usual ramifications on wageswill follow.
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