Palm Oil Industry Not Tapping Russia, East Europe Hard Enough

BY :RATRI M. SINIWI

NOVEMBER 24, 2016

Jakarta. Indonesia, the world’s largest exporter of crude palm oil, sees potential for bigger exports to Russian and eastern European markets to counter slowing demand from traditional markets like India and China.

Russia now accounts for less than 4 percent of Indonesia's palm oil exports, but it has doubled in volume in the last four years, data from Indonesian Palm Oil Association (GAPKI) showed. The association expects to ship 700,000 metric tons of palm oil to Russia this year. That compared to 356,000 tons of palm oil in 2012.

“If we take a serious look, the potential demand goes up to more than 1 million tons – and that’s just from Russia, not even including countries in eastern Europe,” GAPKI general treasurer, Kanya Lakshmi Sidarta, said in a statement on Wednesday (23/11).

“They are very interested in buying more palm oil from us,” Kanya added.

GAPKI will be inviting Prof. Oleg S. Medvedev from Lomonosov Moscow State University to their annual Indonesian Palm Oil Conference (IPOC), which will be held in Nusa Dua, Bali on Nov. 23 to Nov. 25.

The 12th Indonesian Palm Oil Conference and Price Outlook 2017 will gather industry players from across the globe, including the Minister of Agriculture, Minister of Agricultural and Spatial Planning, and Minister of Trade, for a three day seminar on the industry’s market trends.

Indonesia palm oil export is estimated grow 3.8 percent to 27 million tons this year. That would mark a significant slow down from 18 percent growth in 2015, as demand from China dropped.

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palm oil