Malaysia's engagements with China during Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s visit there have resulted in positive outcomes and key initiatives that will facilitate greater export of Malaysian palm oil as well as various other agricultural commodities to China.
Primary Industries Minister Teresa Kok took advantage of the China visit to further promote Malaysian commodities in the populous nation.
She said in a statement today that as China was among the top three importers of Malaysian palm oil, the ministerial delegation witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between China National Cereals and Oils Foodstuffs Corporation (Cofco) and Sime Darby Plantation Bhd that would lead to a greater uptake of Malaysian palm oil.
“This is considered a landmark initiative and immediate work has commenced between the parties to realise actual trade,” Kok said.
During his five-day official visit to China, Mahathir and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang also witnessed the signing of an MOU between the Malaysian Rubber Board and Hainan State Farms Bureau and Investments Holding Group to collaborate and adopt rubberised bitumen road technology that was expected to create greater demand and market opportunities for Malaysian rubber smallholders and industry.
Kok said another initiative important for the palm oil industry was the inking of an MOU between Tsinghua University and the Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) to develop advanced technologies for palm biofuels. Tsinghua is among the global top 50 universities with a significant focus on engineering and sciences.
“The top-notch research team at the university was highly positive that the collaboration with MPOB will be a major factor to determine China’s own milestones for use of palm-based biofuels in its overall renewable energy mandates,” she said.
Meanwhile, the statement also said Kok and her delegation held bilateral discussions with China’s Minister of General Administration of Customs Ni Yuefeng and discussed various issues of common interest. Technical assistance to facilitate the import of Malaysian commodities into China was also offered.
Ni was informed of the on-going collaboration between MPOB and the general administration of customs authority for the acceptance and registration of the highly nutritious red palm oil, which needed incorporation into Chinese food standards, it said.
The ministerial delegation also visited the Mars chocolate factory located in the Beijing suburbs. The Mars management team reiterated its commitment towards the use of certified and sustainable Malaysian palm oil in various confectionery formulations.
Kok and her delegation also travelled to Guangzhou to visit palm oil refiner FGV China Oils Ltd, which is owned and operated by FGV Holdings Bhd.