Surge in India Palm Oil Imports Boosts Market Outlook

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Palm oil imports into India surged by 12.4% in May compared to the previous month, reaching the highest level in the past four months. Photo by: Special

PALMOILMAGAZINE, SINGAPORE – Palm oil imports into India surged by 12.4% in May compared to the previous month, reaching the highest level in the past four months. This increase was driven by price corrections and a push for more purchases, as reported by five dealers interviewed by Reuters.

As the world’s largest importer of vegetable oil, India’s rising palm oil imports are expected to bolster future palm oil reference prices in Malaysia, which had declined to their lowest level in three months in May. According to the dealers, palm oil imports in India rose to 769,000 metric tons, the highest figure since January.

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Rajesh Patel, Managing Partner at GGN Research specializing in vegetable oil brokerage, noted that the surge in imports was driven by higher margins, prompting many traders to increase their purchases of processed palm oil to 214,000 tons from 124,228 tons in the previous month.

Also Read: Palm Oil Imports Surge to Four-Month High in India for December 2023

The import price of crude palm oil (CPO) for July 2024 delivery in India was offered at US$ 948 per metric ton (inclusive of costs, insurance, and transportation). By comparison, soyoil and sunflower oil were offered at approximately US$ 1,028 and US$ 1,035 per ton, respectively.

As quoted from Reuters, two months ago, CPO was better than other vegetable oils. CEO Sunvin Group, Sandeep Bajoria said that palm oil imports would remain high even in June, about 750.000 tons in India.

Solvent Extractors’ Association of India (SEA) would publish May imports in the midst of June 2024. Besides palm oil, sunflower oil in India got increased 74% in May from the previous month to be 408.000 tons because some ships should delay their departure in April and got to the ports in May. On the other hand, soyoil imports got decreased 16,5% to be 322.000 tons in the same month.

In a whole, the increasing palm oil and sunflower oil imports made vegetable oil imports in India got escalated 15% to be 1,5 million tons in May. India imported palm oil namely from Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand, while soyoil and sunflower oil were imported from Argentina, Brazil, Russia, and Ukraine. (T2)

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