KUALA LUMPUR, March 3 (Bernama) -- Malaysia is the leading trading partnerof the Philippines in vegetable oil, said chairman of United CoconutAssociations of the Philippines, Henry T. Lao.
In his presentation notes at the Annual Palm & Lauric Oils Conference &Exhibition: Price Outlook 2005/2006 here today, Lao said Malaysia shippedout 39,699 metric tonnes (mt) to the Philippines in 2003.
The volume was lower compared to 2002's figures of 43,162 mt.
However, Lao said for the first nine months of 2004, the volume hadalready surpassed 2003's by a whopping 77.7 percent or at 70,550 mt.
The country was top supplier of palm oil during the year with 27,819 mtaccounting to 82.9 percent of total palm oil uptake, said Lao.
"The 2004 three quarter shipment at 60,897 mt has already more thandoubled the annual level in 2003," he said.
Likewise, it was the major source of soybean oil providing 10,921 mt or70.6 percent of total soybean oil requirement, he added.
The bulk of the Philippines imported oil comes from within ASEAN region,specially from Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, and Thailand, with acombined supply of 91.8 percent of total import in 2003.
Lao, who presented notes entitled `Update on the Philippines Vegetable OilIndustry' said that next to Malaysia, the second biggest source ofvegetable oil for Philippines was Singapore.
However, Lao said the volume was much lower at 5,953 mt or 10.5 percent oftotal oil imports and largely consisted of soybean oil and palm oil at2,342 mt and 1,167 mt, respectively.
Lao said Singapore was the second biggest supplier of soybean oil.
Lao said export from Indonesia, the third major supplier of vegetable oilto the Philippines was virtually all palm oil amounting to 4,467 mt out oftotal 4,687 mt shipments in 2003.
The second biggest source of palm oil, shipment in 2004 at 4,509 mt hasalready crossed the 2003 mark, he said.
Similarly, the chairman said, imports from Thailand was almost entirelysoybean oil with volume at 1,440 mt out of 1,765 mt total shipments.
Outside the region, the country's other significant sources of vegetableoils are Taiwan, Canada and the US.
Lao said imports from Taiwan at 370 mt was mainly sesame oil at 228 mt,making it the top supplier of the oil.
Canadian supplies totalled 451 mt of which 410 mt was rapeseed oil, thethird largest after Singapore with 687 mt and Malaysia with 463 mt.
Vegetable oil from the US totalled 356 mt of which corn oil was 109 mt andsoybean oil was 108 mt.
The three countries represented a combined market share of 2.1 percent,said Lao.
Virtually all of the vegetable oils imported by the Philippines are usedfor food supporting industries like bakery, confectionery, dairy products,snacks foods and fast food.
Bulk of palm oil import is used as frying oil although it is also used asingredient in margarine production along with coconut oil. The non-foodapplication is largely in soap making.