New Straits Times
FGV looks to explore new markets
Zakaria says group aims to build refineries in Myanmar, the Philippines and Cambodia
Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd group president and chief executive officer Datuk Zakaria Arshad says the company is planning to build palm oil refineries in Myanmar, the Philippines and Cambodia.
FELDA Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV), the world’s biggest crude palm oil producer, is looking to new markets as traditional customers India and Europe take steps to curb purchases.
Group president and chief executive officer Datuk Zakaria Arshad said yesterday FGV was planning to build palm oil refineries in Myanmar, the Philippines and Cambodia in the next two years.
“We want to spread our sales to various countries, looking at new markets that are looking for additional crude palm oil and olein supply,” he said.
Peanut oil supplies had not been able to keep pace with growing demand in Myanmar, said Zakaria, meaning there was scope to boost palm oil sales there.
The Philippines, which traditionally uses coconut oil, is facing tight supplies of the product as coconut water becomes popular among health-conscious consumers. “There is (also) scope to meet growing demand in Pakistan, where we have a refinery,” said Zakaria on the sidelines of an industry event, here.
The European Union in midJanuary approved draft measures to reform its power market and reduce energy consumption to meet more ambitious climate goals. The draft includes banning the usage of palm oil in motor fuels from 2021.
India, the world’s biggest edible oil importer, last week raised import tax on crude and refined palm oil to the highest level in more than a decade, in a move designed to support local farmers.
“India has to import, they have (supply) limitations. Sooner or later they have to import palm oil. This is only temporary,” said Zakaria.
FGV’s production of fresh fruit bunches was expected to rise 15 per cent this year from a year ago, he added.
“We are looking at a much better crop this year.”