Malaysian palm oil exports could be hit by Indian trade action

Kuala Lumpur’s relations with New Delhi took a downward turn following Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad alluding to an Indian state as a separate country in the United Nations.

According to a report from news wire Bernama, Malaysia’s Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad stated, Kuala Lumpur is monitoring its trade relations with India following news reports that New Delhi is considering trade curbs over its criticism of reigning in militant activity in Kashmir.

According to industry and government sources, India is looking for ways to limit the import of palm oil and other goods from Malaysia following Mahathir’s speech at the United Nations in September wherein he stated India had “invaded and occupied” Jammu and Kashmir, which happens to be an Indian state and not a separate country.

Malaysia had said it did not receive “anything official” from India.

“They are exporting goods to Malaysia too. It’s not just one-way trade, it’s two-way trade,” said Mahathir.

Incidentally, India is the world’s biggest importer of edible oils and is the biggest purchaser of Malaysian palm oil. During the first nine months of this year, India imported 3.9 million tonnes of Malaysian palm oil, according to data compiled by the Malaysian Palm Oil Board.

Malaysia’s key imports from India include petroleum products, live animals and meats, metals, chemicals and chemical products.

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