- First shipment will leave Jakarta today and dock in Pakistan in two weeks
Pakistan will receive 10 shipments of edible oil from Indonesia and Malaysia in the next two weeks, revealed a tweet from the Prime Minister’s Office on Tuesday.
“A total of 2.5 million metric tons of edible oil will be supplied from Indonesia to Pakistan,” it said.
On the directive of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, a Pakistani delegation visited Indonesia and held talks with the Indonesian Ministry of Commerce.
Following successful negotiations, the two countries agreed that Indonesia would provide 2.5 million metric tons of edible oil to Pakistan immediately.
On the request of the Pakistani delegation, the Indonesian Ministry of Commerce has expedited matters and the first ship full of 30,000 metric tons of edible oil will leave for Pakistan on Tuesday June 14.
“Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has made great strides in supplying edible oil to the people. Brotherly country Indonesia will immediately supply palm oil to Pakistan,” the tweet said, adding that the PM had a telephonic conversation with Indonesian President Joko Widodo on June 10.”
On the call, the leaders discussed the state of bilateral relations between Pakistan and Indonesia and how they are based on a strong foundations of cultural and religious affinities and growing cooperation.
PM Shehbaz recalled President Widodo’s visit to Pakistan in 2018 and its substantive outcomes contributing towards strengthening of a Pakistan-Indonesia economic partnership.
The prime minister also appreciated Widodo’s leadership in placing Indonesia on a path of prosperity and development.
The two leaders agreed to further expand and deepen mutually-beneficial cooperation in all dimensions, including high-level exchanges.
Both sides agreed to closely coordinate on ensuring steady import of palm oil from Indonesia. The prime minister extended a cordial invitation to President Joko Widodo and stated that the people of Pakistan looked forward to welcoming him at the earliest opportunity.
Earlier during the month, Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Miftah Ismail directed to expedite the process for import of edible oil from Malaysia and Indonesia to ensure the smooth supply to the consumers and stabilise the price hike of edible oil.
Oil export ban
On April 28, Indonesia halted shipments of crude palm oil and some derivative products to try to tame soaring prices of domestic cooking oil, surprising markets that were already rattled by earlier government intervention measures.
President Widodo said that supply of bulk cooking oil had reached a level greater than needed.
"In several regions I know prices of cooking oil were still relatively high, but I believe in coming weeks they will be more affordable," Widodo said in a video statement.
Industry groups had warned that the palm oil sector could grind to a halt in coming weeks if the export ban were to remain in place.
The export ban sent soybean oil prices soaring to a record high amid heightened concerns about already depleted global supplies of alternative vegetable oils.
Palm oil is the most consumed vegetable oil in the world, and Indonesia accounts for 35 percent of global exports, according to James Fry, chairman of LMC consulting firm.
Indonesia's export ban was designed to bring down prices in the country and limit shortages, according to authorities.
On May 19, Indonesia lifted its three-week old palm oil export ban due to improvements in its domestic cooking oil supply, its president said, a move applauded by farmers amid mounting calls for its removal.