KARACHI (June 14 2003) : Pakistan has received a Japanese aid of $ 16million to import soyabean oil.
According to official sources, one tender was floated at the end of lastyear but the grant was not utilised since the tender terms were not clearabout the status of GMO which means Genetically Modified Seeds.
After sorting out the issue of GMO, another tender was floated this weekin London for the import of 30,000 tonnes soyabean oil.
However, this tender was also ultimately scrapped because of ambiguity interms and conditions.
Sources said that Crown Agents which is exclusively handling this Japanesegrant, is expected to float this tender for Pakistan next week forshipment of the oil during July or August next.
The import will be handled by Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP).
The oil after its arrival, will be sold to vegetable ghee manufacturersthrough local auction.
In the ghee industry main buyers of soyabean oil are those units which areproducing cooking oil.
The consumption of soyabean oil has come down considerably as cooking oilis mostly consumed in the urban areas whereas in the rural areas ghee isconsumed which is mostly produced from RBD palm oil and RBD palm Olien,sources said.
It may be mentioned here that local production of edible oil accounted for29 percent of the total availability while the remaining 71 percent wasmade available through imports.
During 2002-03, local production of edible oil is provisionally estimatedat 0.634 million tonnes.
The total availability of edible oil from all sources amounted 1.76million tonnes during July-March 2002-03.