SARAWAK's crude palm oil (CPO) exports exceeded the RM1bil mark last year with production increasing by 20.1% to 886,474 tonnes from 737,864 in the previous year, said Planning and Resource Management Minister Datuk Awang Tengah Ali.
He said in his speech at a seminar on “Palm Oil Cultivation In Peat Soil – Moving Forward” in Sibu on Saturday that the export value in 2002 stood at RM920.29mil.
Awang Tengah said that in 2003 the average CPO price increased by 13.2% (or RM180) to RM1,544 per tonne compared with RM1,363 in 2002.
This was due to increased production and exports of palm oil in a situation of tight world supply of oils and fats, he said.
Higher matured hectarage had led to the increase in oil extraction rate, he added.
He said the Government's liberal export tax and barter trade policies had helped to strengthen the CPO prices. – Bernama