India not extending 5% safeguard duty on Malaysian palm oil

PETALING JAYA: India will not be extending the bilateral safeguard duty on the import of certain palm oil varieties from Malaysia, reports The New Indian Express.

The report said the Indian Commerce Ministry’s investigative arm, the Directorate General of Trade Remedies (DGTR), had issued a notice on the matter days after Dr Mahathir Mohamad resigned as prime minister.

However, the report also noted that the DGTR’s probe was launched before Mahathir’s remarks on the Kashmir issue which led to calls to boycott Malaysian palm oil.

The DGTR, the report said, started its probe into the increase in prices of refined bleached deodorised palmolein and refined bleached deodorised palm oil from Malaysia in August after the Solvent Extractors’ Association of India lodged a complaint.

In September, New Delhi imposed a 5% safeguard duty for six months, taking the duty on these palm oil varieties to 50%.

But the latest notification from the DGTR said the director general “does not recommend further extension of bilateral safeguard duty” and that it may not be necessary to impose safeguard duty beyond the current period of 180 days.