INDONESIA, MALAYSIA SQUABBLE OVER EU CONTAMINANTS RULE ON PALM OIL
Malaysia and Indonesia are squabbling over the strict contaminants rule of the European Union (EU) that threatens their exports of palm oil, the biggest agricultural export commodity from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
Indonesia has been having a tough time securing what it deems to be fair treatment of palm oil as the European Union (EU) and the United Kingdom are said to be keen on limiting imports of palm oil, which is now covered by a rule that limits the presence of the contaminant 3-monochloropropane diol (3-MCPD) to only 2.5 parts per million (ppm) in one kilo while other types of cooking oils are limited to only 1.25 ppm, but the Council of Palm Oil Producing Countries (CPOPC) wants a uniform level of 2.5 ppm since a higher level would mean that its palm oil is less healthy.
Malaysia originally acceded to the demand for a uniform 3-MCPD limit at 2.5 ppm but walked back on this later on, saying such a policy would affect all oils even as its products that bear the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certification enjoy better patronage in the UK>
Indonesia has warned that ASEAN palm oil risks being shut out of EU and UK because of this, which would please EU vegetable oil producers and the UK, which has already been demanding that importers provide guarantees that their palm oil exports have been produced without damaging the environment, a requirement that is not covered by the rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO.)