KUALA LUMPUR (June 2): The Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities (MPIC) in a statement has assured the Malaysian Biodiesel Association (MBA) that it is all ears to the group’s proposal that Malaysia should retain its existing biodiesel mandate after all.
In the Thursday (June 2) statement, the ministry said the MBA previously mentioned that any knee-jerk reaction to banning biofuels derived from vegetable oils would cause havoc in the global vegetable oil market.
The MBA also highlighted why Malaysia should not reduce or stop its biodiesel mandate as the biodiesel industry hardly consumes one million tonnes of palm oil annually as opposed to over 40 million tonnes used globally.
“Needless to say that disruptions from the geopolitical tension have exacerbated price rises in food commodities, which were already running at 10-year highs in the Food and Agriculture Organization's index, threatening not only a jump in global malnourishment but a spike in global inflation across developed, developing and under-developed economies.
“True enough, Indonesia declared an export ban on April 28 on cooking oil and its raw material (which lasted until May 23) in the quest to make cooking oil available at affordable prices for its citizens.
“But now that normalcy has resumed and calmer heads have prevailed, the MPIC wishes to state that it is all status quo on Malaysia’s biodiesel mandate front,” it said.
Meanwhile, the MPIC also said Malaysia’s National Biofuel Policy, which was rolled out in March 2006, remains committed to reducing the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions rate in line with the country’s aspiration towards achieving a GHG emissions reduction target of 45% based on gross domestic product by 2030, among other things.
“To the MBA, we thank them for their invaluable feedback on our big role and the effect of the biofuel policy towards conserving nature for younger-generation Malaysians.
“We welcome all constructive criticism or views that can enable both sides of the divide — authorities or industry players — to derive a win-win situation,” the ministry said.