India’s total refined, bleached and deodorised (RBD) palm olein imports increased sharply in the 2021-22 marketing
year that started in November, following a reduction in import duties, while crude palm oil (CPO) arrivals decreased.
Imports of RBD palm olein rose in November-December to 82,267t, up from 12,900t a year ago, solvent extractors
association of India (SEAI) data show.
The increase followed the Indian government’s extension of free import status and removal of import duty on refined
palm oils until 31 December 2022, in a bid to ease consumer prices. But the cut in the effective import duty on RBD
without simultaneous reduction in import duty on CPO could largely boost arrivals of palm olein and compel Indian refiners that struggle to procure crude oil to close, SEAI said.
India’s total palm oil arrivals — comprising both crude and refined products — decreased to 1.1mn t from 1.4mn t in
November-December 2020. Malaysia and Indonesia remained the largest palm oil exporters to India, supplying 661,588tand 360,278t, respectively.
In contrast, overall soft oil imports increased to about 1.3mn t this marketing year from 1mn t the same time last
year, mainly on the account of higher SBO imports. India’s total SBO arrivals increased to 866,631t in Decem-
ber-November 2021 from 573,593t in November-December 2020, due to declining domestic crushing activity. Argentina supplied 595,582t of product, followed by Brazil with 205,736t. Turkey significantly increased supply to 34,786t of product from only 7,000t the same time a year ago.
India’s sunflower oil (SFO) arrivals rose to 258,449t in December, more than doubling from 125,024t a month earlierbut down by 23,489t on the year.
Ukraine remained the main SFO supplier to India, covering more than 96pc, or 366,439t, of the total imported
volume. But this was down by 17,969t on the year, following higher prices for Ukrainian product compared with SBO.
India’s edible vegetable oil imports rose to 1.22mn t in December from 1.17mn t in November, but down from almost
1.36mn t in December 2020. Overall edible vegetable oil imports this marketing year totalled 2.41mn t, broadly in linewith the 2.46mn t received over the same period a year ago.