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KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian palm oil futures fell on Friday and were on course for a weekly decline, tracking losses in rival soyoil, as traders appeared to have shrugged off data that showed improving March exports.

The benchmark palm oil contract for June delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange slipped 45 ringgit, or 0.79%, to 5,660 ringgit ($1,344.42) a tonne during early trade, on course for a third daily decline.

For the week, the contract lost 6.2% so far. Malaysia’s palm oil exports in March rose between 6.7% and 7.4% from prior month as shipments to China and India picked up, cargo surveyors said on Thursday.

Soyoil prices on the Chicago Board of Trade ticked up after a 3% overnight plunge as the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) forecast US 2022 soybean plantings at a record high.

Dalian’s most-active soyoil contract fell 0.3%, while its palm oil contract lost 1.5%. Russia said it will ban exports of sunflower seeds from Friday until the end of August and impose an export quota on sunflower oil to avoid shortages and ease pressure on domestic prices.

Top edible oil buyer India has raised the base import prices of palm oil and soyoil as prices jumped in overseas markets. Palm oil may test a support at 5,606 ringgit per tonne, a break below may cause a fall into 5,384-5,512 ringgit range, Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao said.

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