NEW DELHI: Malaysian palm oil futures fell for a fifth consecutive week as demand dropped ahead of a long holiday season, but higher crude oil prices limited losses.

Higher crude oil futures make palm an attractive option for biodiesel feedstock. The benchmark palm oil contract for March delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange lost 3 ringgit, or 0.08%, to settle at 3,738 ringgit ($807.52).

Exports of Malaysian palm oil products for Dec. 1-20 fell 8% to 837,475 metric tons from 910,513 tons shipped during Nov. 1-20, cargo surveyor Intertek Testing Services said on Wednesday. Indonesia, the world’s biggest palm oil producer, exported 3.00 million tons of palm oil products in October, down 31% from a year earlier, data from the Indonesian Palm Oil Association (GAPKI) showed.

Oil prices rose as much as 1% on Friday as Middle East tensions persisted after Houthi attacks on ships in the Red Sea, although Angola’s decision to leave OPEC raised questions over the group’s effectiveness in supporting prices.

India, the world’s biggest importer of vegetable oils, on Friday said it would allow the import of edible oils at lower import tax rates until March 2025, as New Delhi tries to keep a lid on local prices ahead of a general election early next year.

Soyoil futures on the Chicago Board of Trade were up 0.57%. Palm oil may test support of 3,683 ringgit per ton, a break below which could open the way towards 3,641 ringgit, Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao said.


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