Our palm oil is poised to remain a key contributor to the nation's economy this year.

We anticipate an increase in export revenue from palm oil and palm-based products.

The rise in revenue is expected due to higher demand from our primary importers, notably

China and India, as well as improved prices of crude palm oil (CPO).

India and China together made up 28.5 per cent of Malaysia's export of palm oil for 2023 and we anticipate this trend to continue this year.

India maintained its position as Malaysia's largest palm oil export market last year for the 10th consecutive year since 2014, with 2.84 million tonnes or 18.8 per cent of Malaysia's total palm oil exports followed by China at 1.47 million tonnes (9.7 per cent). 

Other significant importers were the European Union1.07 million tonnes (7.1 per cent), Kenya 0.92 million tonnes (6.1 per cent), Turkiye 0.88 million tonnes (5.8 per cent), Japan 0.55 million tonnes (3.6 per cent) and Pakistan 0.50 million tonnes (3.3 per cent).

These seven main markets contributed 8.23 million tonnes or 54.4 per cent of Malaysia's total palm oil exports in 2023.

Malaysia exported 24.49 million tonnes of palm oil and palm-based products and generated an income of RM94.95 billion for 2023. In 2024, export revenue of palm oil and palm-based products is expected at RM110 billion. 

Similarly, palm oil exports may increase by 3.3 per centto 15.6 million tonnes for 2024, as opposed to 15.1 million tonnes for 2023 attributed to expected higher export demand, especially from China.

Besides, the B35 implementation (35 per cent palm oil blend in biodiesel)in Indonesia and the high crude oil price are expected to increase export demand for Malaysian palm oil.

 On the other hand, we foresee the price of CPO to average higher at between RM3,900 per tonne and RM4,200 per tonne this year compared to the RM3,809.50 per tonne which will support our income from palm oil exports.

The expected higher average price of CPO may be mainly due to the tight palm oil supply as a result of unfavourable weather conditions which are expected to remain at least until April 2024. Malaysia's palm oil stocks, expected to be below two million tonnes this year will also support the price of CPO.

We foresee production of palm oil to be higher this year due to improving labour condition in the plantations which will be another contributor to the export income. We are now recording better production of CPO although the numbers are still below the actual production potential level.

In 2023, CPO production recorded an increase for the second year in a row to 18.55 million tonnes compared to 18.45 million tonnes in 2022 and 18.12 million tonnes in 2021.

The higher CPO production of 0.5 per cent in 2023 was partly contributed by the improved estate's yield performance of fresh fruit bunches (FFB) during the year, up by 1.9 per cent to 15.79 tonnes per hectare compared to 15.49 tonnes per hectare in the previous year. 

In 2024, CPO production is expected to increase marginally by 1.1 per cent to 18.75 million tonnes from 2023's production due to an improvement in the labour situation and increased fertiliser application.

However, CPO production is expected to remain below potential due to the El Nino event, which is expected to affect FFB production in the second half of this year.

To expand our export market, MPOB has successfullyproduced high value palm-based products in the market, especially red palm oil, which is rich in various natural health-promoting antioxidants including vitamin E, carotene, phytosterols, squalene and coenzyme Q10.MPOB has developed and introduced value-added products utilising red palm oil, including cookies, ice cream, and various other products. 

MPOB's research in the food and nutrition field has expanded the range of palm oil applications, leading to the development of new products that enhance export diversification. These include palm-based coconut milk and palm-based cheese. 

Our research efforts have resulted in the successful development of tocotrienol and nano-tocotrienol from palm oil, which are known for their health benefits. These products have garnered significant demand from our export markets, reflecting their positive reception among consumers. 





Sumber : New Straits Times