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Malaysia raises export tax for crude palm oil for first time in over a year

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Malaysia has raised its export tax for crude palm oil for January, for the first time in one-and-a-half years, the Malaysian Palm Oil Board's website said on Friday, citing the national customs department.

[SINGAPORE] Malaysia has raised its export tax for crude palm oil for January, for the first time in one-and-a-half years, the Malaysian Palm Oil Board's website said on Friday, citing the national customs department.

The world's second-largest producer and exporter of palm oil had last imposed an export tax of 4.5 per cent in August 2018 before lowering it to zero. It then placed a tax-free exemption on crude palm oil from May to December 2019 in a move to boost palm oil exports and expand into new markets.

Malaysia had calculated a palm oil reference price of RM2,571.16 (S$833) per tonne for January 2020.

Traders said Indonesia may follow in Malaysia's footsteps to impose a similar tax on exports.

"The Indonesian export levy decision is keenly waited which would throw light on the 30 per cent biodiesel implementation as well," said Anilkumar Bagani, research head of Sunvin Group, a Mumbai-based vegetable oil broker.

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"Malaysia will export more refined products as crude palm oil will now have 5 per cent tax," said one Kuala Lumpur-based trader.

Malaysian benchmark palm oil futures were up 1 per cent at RM2,913 per tonne in early trade on Friday.

REUTERS

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