New Delhi: Nepal’s edible palm oil refiners have stopped buying crude palm oil as their domestic stocks have started piling up after India suspended imports of edible palm oil into the country, say reports.
India suspended 39 oil import licences in May 2020 to slower the duty-free shipments from neigbouring countries, resulting in disruption of refiners in Nepal that used to thrive due to huge palm oil imports by India.
‘Refiners are not importing fresh crude palm oil but we have to take (delivery) of the stock which is in transit,’ said Amit Sarda, director at Pashupati Oil Industries, a leading refiner and exporter based at Nepal’s industrial town of Biratnagar.
According to Sarda, palm oil stockpiles have swelled to 70,000 tonnes exceeding local demands.
As a result of the stockpiling and India’s ban on import, Nepal’s crude palm imports have decreased to 7000 tonnes per month from around 21000 tonnes per month for the month of June.
India used to import around two-thirds of Nepal’s edible palm oil and was singlehandedly one of their biggest customers for the country palm oil trade.