Palm oil boost to Tabung Haji’s profits

TANAH MERAH: The Tabung Haji Board is consolidating its investments in Indonesia while also trying to recover losses in the Philippines as part of its effort to expand its profit-margin.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the board had invested over RM1bil in palm oil plantations in Riau, Indonesia.

“We hope to break even next year in our investments and begin to chalk higher profits after that,” he said after meeting Felda Gua Musang settlers.

The board is scheduled to earn a profit of RM469mil through investments in the oil palm plantations in Riau this year and if global commodity prices of palm oil appreciates further, the board hope to double its profits next year, he said.

Ahmad also said a factory to process raw palm oil in Batam, Indonesia is another major contributor to revenue as it was now registering sales of US$1mil per month.

In view of the strong performance of its investments in Indonesia, Ahmad said the board is exploring the possibility of establishing 200,000 ha of oil palm plantation in Kalimantan and to enter into joint-venture prospects with Indonesian entrepreneurs.

The project in Kalimantan would also involved the world’s biggest plantation operator, Felda.

In the Philippines, Ahmad added that the board intends to recoup its investments in the affected sourthern region after the Government declared emergency rule in the area following the end of a ceasefire agreement.

Ahmad said the board plans to work with the Philippines in securing the reopening of plantations there despite of internal conflict in the south.

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