Sunflower oil imports hit 4.4 LMT in March, second highest ever : The Tribune India

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Sunflower oil imports hit 4.4 LMT in March, second highest ever

Sunflower oil imports hit 4.4 LMT in March, second highest ever

India’s sunflower oil imports rose by 51 per cent in March from the previous month to reach the second-highest level on record, as lower prices led refiners to increase their purchases, while reducing buying of rival palm oil, five dealers told Reuters.



Mumbai, April 2

India’s sunflower oil imports rose by 51 per cent in March from the previous month to reach the second-highest level on record, as lower prices led refiners to increase their purchases, while reducing buying of rival palm oil, five dealers told Reuters.

Palm oil buying down

Crude palm oil imports are offered at about $1,020 a metric tonne, including cost, insurance and freight , in India for May delivery, while soyoil and sunflower oil are offered around $1,000 and $960 a tonne, respectively. Lower prices are encouraging refiners to increase their purchases of sunflower oil over palm oil.

Lower palm oil purchases by India, the world’s biggest importer of vegetable oils, could cap the rally in benchmark Malaysian palm oil futures that are trading near their highest in a year. Higher sunflower oil purchases will help to reduce sunflower oil inventories in the Black Sea region.

March sunflower oil imports surged 51 per cent month-on-month to 4,48,000 metric tonne, the second highest on record, according to estimates from dealers. Palm oil imports fell 3.3 per cent to 481,000 tonne, the lowest since May 2023, they said.

“Production issues are keeping palm oil prices firm, prompting buyers to switch to sunflower oil,” Sandeep Bajoria, CEO of Sunvin Group, a vegetable oil brokerage, said.

Crude palm oil imports are offered at about $1,020 a metric tonne, including cost, insurance and freight, in India for May delivery, while soyoil and sunflower oil are offered around $1,000 and $960 a tonne, respectively, dealers said. Palm oil usually trades at a discount to rival soyoil and sunflower oil, but falling stocks have lifted its prices above rival oils, whose supplies are abundant.

Sunflower oil prices are very competitive, which would ensure higher imports even during April and May, Rajesh Patel, managing partner at edible oil trader and broker GGN Research, said. Soyoil imports in March jumped 27 per cent to 2,20,000 tonne from a month earlier, and were far below the monthly average imports of 306,000 tonne seen in the last marketing year ended October 31, dealers estimated. — Reuters

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