KUALA LUMPUR: The export value of palm oil and palm oil-based products is targeted to increase to RM75bil this year from RM73.3bil in 2020 due to high demand, as economies around the world gradually recover.
Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Dr Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali said the implementation of the country’s economic recovery initiatives, including the recently-launched national vaccination programme, would further enhance the industry.
“We hope with the vaccination programme now underway, this industry will be stronger and more nimble to improve (export) performance.
“We also hope that the country’s recovering economy will drive the growth of palm oil prices and raise other commodity sectors, ” he told reporters after attending the 2021 special address and “a year of Malaysia prihatin” ceremony organised by the Plantation Industries and Commodities Ministry here yesterday.
Mohd Khairuddin said in 2020, the country’s agricommodity sector recorded a positive trade value of RM191.7bil, an increase of 14.1% compared with RM168.1bil in 2019.
Of the amount, total exports accounted for RM150.5bil and total imports RM41.2bil.
The successes recorded by this sector include an increase in palm oil exports (RM73.3bil compared with RM63.73bil in 2019), exports worth RM22bil recorded by the timber industry, rubber RM48.5bil, cocoa RM6.2bil, kenaf and tobacco RM329.02mil, and pepper RM120.8mil.
“This is a blessing in disguise. With the Covid-19 outbreak worldwide, the commodity sector, especially palm oil and rubber has recorded a very good development.
“The price of CPO (crude palm oil) has recently risen by more than RM4,000 per tonne, the highest in 25 years and enabled companies that suffered losses in the first quarter of 2020 to make huge profits in the second, third and fourth quarters, as well as could bear past losses, ” he said.
This year, the ministry aims to increase timber export revenue to RM23bil, as well as a 6% increase in rubber export growth.
Mohd Khairudin said the ministry would step up efforts to add value to rubber by mobilising the East coast latex corridor project in Terengganu to increase local latex production and focus on increasing the size of kenaf and pepper plantations. — Bernama