Palm oil industry has chartered new frontiers

This is written by my colleague Zulita Mustafa.

KUALA LUMPUR: Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin yesterday said the palm oil industry in Malaysia has chartered new frontiers by ensuring adequate supply of palm oil to meet the growing global demand for this versatile oil.

He added that while this being the case, the county cannot remain complacent with current palm oil prices hovering around RM2,800 per tonne.

Muhyiddin said the industry should expand its venture into diversified niche downstream activities, which will fetch higher market values for palm products. 

"In order to maintain our competitiveness in the global market, there is a need to address major issues such as environmental protection, sustainable production and trade liberalisation.

"With rising competition, it has become a matter of strategic importance for the industry to examine the relative strengths of Malaysian palm oil and challenges heaped upon them," he said in his speech at the opening of Palm and Lauric Oils Conference and Exhibition Price Outlook 2014 here yesterday.

Muhyiddin also said the government has placed importance in creating wealth through production of advanced oleo chemical products, biomass, biodiesel, specialty fats and phytonutrients. The government, he said would also like industry players to undertake greater commitment and intensity efforts in research and development activities to enhance productivity in the oil palm sector.

The three-day event sees more than 2,000 industry players from over 50 countries attending the conference. Also present were Plantation Industries and Commodities Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas and Bursa Malaysia chief executive officer Datuk Tajuddin Atan.