Gov’t urged to ban export of crude palm oil to protect local market

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The government is being urged to ban the export of Crude Palm Oil (CPO) from Ghana, to ensure local processors have access to the raw material for their work.

According to stakeholders in the Crude Palm Oil industry, the current ban on the export of the product by other countries like Indonesia requires that Ghana (which is a net importer of Crude Palm Oil), takes steps to protect its local stock.

Indonesia’s ban on palm oil exports which started on April 28, 2022, to address an ongoing shortage of cooking oil in the country, if not lifted, is expected to be most punishing to sectors manufacturing consumer products in Ghana and other parts of Africa, such as cooking oil, detergents and snacks.

Because Ghana is a net importer of palm oil, any pressure from the ban will weigh on the supply chain and drive prices up and affect availability.

Available data shows that Ghana produced about 45,000 mtns of palm oil at its peak and imported over 400,000 mtns as of 2019 for local consumption and export of refined oil and by-products.

The stark difference in the numbers has led some stakeholders in the crude palm oil industry warning of supply disruptions for cooking oil and imported crude palm oil on the Ghanaian market in the next 2 to 3 months if the ban on the export of palm oil from Indonesia isn’t lifted soon.

Speaking to Citi Business News, the Managing Director of Wilmar Africa Limited producers of Frytol, Kwame Wiafe, urged the government to ban any export of the product to minimize the supply risk for Ghana.

crude palm oil
crude palm oil

“A lot of the local plantation prefer selling their Crude Palm Oil outside where they will get better prices, that selling to local refineries like us. So I can tell you about 60% of locally produced Crude Palm Oil was being exported, so I had to go outside and bring in the stock at a higher cost. Talking about the current ban on CPO, it is happening in other countries like Ivory Coast and Indonesia and the likes. These countries are taking steps to assure themselves of food security because of the current situation the world finds itself in.”

“So government could decide that in the meantime, in order to mitigate the supply risks, CPO exports should be banned. This will enable the refiners in the country to get some stock to mitigate the risk that will emanate from this ban,” he added.