SEA wants to limit refined palm oil imports
Import duty difference between refined and crude palm oils has the potential to kill the domestic refining industry, Mumbai-based Solvent Extractors Association of India (SEA) believes. Therefore, the industry body has demanded that the Centre again curb the import of refined palm oil and reinstate the earlier duty differential of 11% between the two oils. Last month, the government brought down import duty on RBD palmolein and RBD palm oils by 5.5% to check prices of edible oils in the domestic market. This led to the import duty difference between refined palm oils and crude palm oil (CPO) dropping to 5.5%.
India is a large importer of edible oil. It usually buys CPO (raw material) from the global market and refines it in the domestic market. However, a dip in duty difference between the two oils, has propelled traders to shift to refined palm oils. “We strongly appeal to the government to reinstate duty differential of 11 per cent between crude and refined palm oil as was prevailing prior to December 20, 2021 by reducing agri cess on CPO by 5 per cent. This would ensure a differential of 11 per cent in import levies between CPO and refined palm oils,” SEA President Atul Chaturvedi wrote in his letter to Union Food Secretary Sudhanshu Pandey. He believes that placing curbs on imported refined palm oil will enable the domestic refining industry to have a level playing field and in line with Prime Minister’s vision of Make In India.