26/08/2003 - MALAYSIA’S palm oil players need intellectual capability orbe street smart to position the commodity as a powerhouse in the globaloils and fats economy.
Malaysia Palm Oil Association chairman Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim saidthe way ahead is full of challenges and being good at just producing thegoods is no longer sufficient.
To stay competitive, one must have the capacity to comprehend thedevelopment of the bigger picture which is just as important.
Employing the tools essential to keeping the industry ahead is just asessential, including having the sufficient knowledge of issues related tothe industry, Abdul Khalid said in Putrajaya yesterday.
Abdul Khalid was delivering a keynote address themed Palm Oil: ThePowerhouse for the Global Oils and Fats Economy to 1,430 participants ofthe biennial International Palm Oil Congress or Pipoc 2003.
Having greater control of the internal and external influences would alsobe just as important, said Abdul Khalid, who is also Kumpulan Guthrie Bhdgroup chief executive.
He added that even though the palm oil industry has generated investmentsexceeding RM60 billion for both the public and private sector and offersthe nation substantial foreign exchange earnings, it is just one of 17major commodities traded.
In terms of the global supply of oils and fats, palm oil accounts for justabout one-fifth of the total.
Here, statistics say clearly that the environment that we are in is notlimited to understanding how to produce palm oil better or moreefficiently. We also have to understand beyond production capabilities.
He said the palm oil industry is increasingly knowledge-based, and anyknowledge-driven industry will have to require a wealth of marketinformation that is reliable, accurate and timely.
More importantly, there must be proper interpretation of such informationand appropriate reaction to such intelligence by industry players, hesaid.
Abdul Khalid said while palm oil producers are capable of producing andexporting the commodity, the value or price of the commodity remainsexternally driven.
He said there needs to be more focus on substantive decisions thatactually drive demand, such as how to gain leadership in the oils and fatseconomy.