Palm oil business: Malaysia looks for closer co-op with Iran
Tehran, Iran, March 18
By Mehdi Sepahvand - Trend:
Malaysia has called for stronger trade ties with the Islamic republic of Iran.
"We still look to Iran as a major destination for our products, palm oil in particular," Malaysian Minister of International Trade and Industry Mustapa Mohamed said, IRNA news agency reported March 18.
Mohamed's statements come as Iran has increased import tax on palm oil by 26 percent. Kuala Lumpur has also increased tax on palm oil export by five percent due to its own economic problems.
This has brought the cost of importing palm oil to Iran close to the cost of importing other oils such has soybean oil.
Iranian consumers were enraged in 2013 when they found a wide variety of food made from dairy products to contain a heavy amount of palm oil, a dangerous intake for the human body.
The health minister of president Hassan Rouhani's administration, was the one to bring theissue into public focus. Rouhani then limited the import of palm oil which had been on the rise during the preceding administration.
Several studies have linked palm oil to higher risks of cardiovascular disease including the risk of heart attacks.
Muhammad Baidouan, first secretary at the Malaysian Embassy in Tehran, told Trend February 16 that Malaysia is going to send a big business delegations to Iran to hold talks with Iranian officials and companies in the near future.