However, this concession is not available to palmolein coming from Indonesia or any other Asean nation.
The New Year gift of the government to palm refining industry in the form of reducing the duty difference between crude palm oil (CPO) and palmolein has the potential of sounding the death knell of the industry, the Solvent Extractors Association of India (SEA) has stated in reaction to the Centre’s decision.
The notification came late on December 31 has cut the duty difference between CPO and palmolein from 10% to 5% on palmolein to be imported from Malaysia. However, this concession is not available to palmolein coming from Indonesia or any other Asean nation.
This would result in a piquant position as the same oil would attract different duties from different regions, BV Mehta, executive director, SEA, said in a statement.
Admittedly, the government had been compelled to honour old agreements of 2010 with Malaysia and Asean countries to reduce import duty on palm oil, he said. The notification provides deeper tariff concession in respect of CPO and RBD Palmolein imported from Malaysia under the India-Malaysia comprehensive Economic Economic Cooperation Agreement with effect from January 1, 2019.
The overall duty reduction is 4.4% for CPO but in the case of RBD Palmolein imported from Malaysia, it would be 9.9% while from Indonesia, it would be 4.4%.
The duty cut has reduced effective duty difference between CPO and RBO Palmolein to just 5.5% against the previous 11% .
This government’s move is contrary to the interests of oilseed farmer, who had been lately enthused by the high import duties.