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Indonesia’s crude palm oil export plunges as coronavirus pandemic erodes demand

JAKARTA, March 26 (Xinhua) — Exports of crude palm oil (CPO) from Indonesia fell heavily in January as the novel coronavirus pandemic has drifted global demand.

Indonesia’s shipment of CPO shrank by 35.5 percent to 2.39 million tons in January on the monthly basis, the Indonesian Oil Palm Grower Association said on Thursday.

“The novel coronavirus pandemic has slowed down the global economy and made the consumption of vegetable oil edge down,” the association’s Executive Director Mukti Sardjono said, adding that the CPO stockpiles of importing countries remain high.

Among the countries cutting importation of CPO from Indonesia are the European Union member countries, the United States, China and India, according to the association.

However, the prices of CPO rose to 830 U.S. dollars per ton in January from 787 dollars per ton in December 2019, it noted.

Indonesia’s CPO production ticked up in January to 3.48 million tons from 3.45 million tons in December 2019.

Indonesia, the world largest exporter and producer of palm oil, produced 47.43 million tons of palm oil last year, 9 percent higher than the outputs in the previous year, according to data from the association.

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