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February palm oil imports seen climbing on strong summer season demand

Pratik Parija | Bloomberg/ 14 Mar 18 | 10:41 PM

India’s palm oil imports probably advanced in February as rising demand before the summer season outweighed higher prices.

Imports in the world’s biggest buyer climbed about 8 per cent to 795,000 metric tonnes from a year earlier, according to the median of four estimates in a Bloomberg survey of processors, brokers and analysts. Total vegetable oil purchases decreased 5.4 per cent to 1.2 million tonnes. The Solvent Extractors’ Association of India is likely to release monthly trade numbers this week.

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Palm oil prices on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives rose 2.7 per cent in February, after falling for three straight months on higher stockpiles, muted demand from key buyers and expectations of a surge in supply later in the year.

Palm has fallen 5.7 per cent this month after India increased import duties. Still, prices in India are about $25-$30 a tonne lower than imports, prompting some buyers to delay shipments for about 15 days, Sandeep Bajoria, chief executive officer of Sunvin Group, a Mumbai-based broker and consultant for the oilseeds industry.

Soybean oil purchases dipped about 23 per cent to 193,500 tonnes in February, the survey showed. India buys soybean oil mainly from the US, Brazil and Argentina. Sunflower oil imports fell around 7.4 per cent to 194,000 tonnes. Canola oil imports were seen at 19,000 tonnes. Bloomberg

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