The Thai Government is planning to introduce more measures to shore up domestic oil palm prices on top of the price guarantee scheme.
The price of domestic fresh palm nuts hit a two-decade low in April at 1.60-1.80 baht per kilogramme.(Photo: bangkokpost.com)
According to Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce Jurin Laksanawisit,the additional measures include the compulsory order for all petrol stationsnationwide to sell biodiesel B10, replacing B7, from January 1, 2020.
The Ministry of Commerce vowed to tighten measures to prevent oil palm smugglingfrom neighbouring countries, and speed up exports of crude palm oil (CPO),notably to India.
Another measure is to install CPO automatic level gauges at crushing mills andrefineries. The automatic level gauges will enable regulators to observereal-time information on CPO stocks, giving them verifiable data to help withdecision-making and prevent future smuggling.
The state-run Electricity Generating Authority ofThailand (Egat) will also be ordered to purchase palm oil to produceelectricity.
In August, the cabinet approved a package worth 59 billion THB(1.93 billion USD) in price guarantee and subsidy schemes for rice and oilpalm. Of the total budget, 13.3 billion THB is for the price guaranteeprogramme for rice, 21.4 billion for oil palm and 25 billion to subsidiseproduction costs for rice farmers.
Thailand is expected to produce about 16.8 million tonnes of fresh palm nutsthis year or about 3.02 million tonnes of crude palm oil. Of the total crudepalm oil output, 1.2 million tonnes are scheduled for consumption and 1.2-1.3million tonnes for power production.
The price of domestic fresh palm nuts hit a two-decade low in April at1.60-1.80 baht per kilogramme, far below growers' costs and the average priceof 3.45 baht per kg last year and four baht per kg in 2017. The prices of freshpalm nuts are quoted at 2.55-3.20 baht per kg./. VNA