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M'sian palm oil operators looking to invest in Pakistan
Publication Date : 27-07-2013
Malaysian palm oil operator Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd’s (FGVH) 49 percent-owned associate Felda Holdings Bhd, along with joint-venture (JV) partner Mapak Sdn Bhd, may consider investing up to 42 million ringgit (US$13 million) to expand bulking facilities and build a crushing plant in Pakistan as part of a plan to grow the midstream business.
FGVH’s operations in the country are carried out via three JVs with two Malaysian companies and the Westbury Group, a leading Pakistani business house with industrial, commercial and financial interests.
According to FGVH president and chief executive officer Mohd Emir Mavani Abdullah, the proposed expansion of the bulking facility for an additional 40,000 tonnes would extend the crushing plant’s services to beyond the needs of local refiners.
He said in a statement that FGVH intended to buy seeds from Canada for crushing at a new plant being built in a partnership with the Westbury Group. This plant would have a crushing capacity of 300 tonnes per day.
Emir noted that the recent development fitted in with FGVH’s strategy to move further midstream and downstream to sustain and protect its upstream business.
Meanwhile, he clarified that the company would not be able to comment on reports about Pakistan exploring growing oil palm in the coastal areas of Balochistan and Sindh.
Emir said contrary to what had been reported, the company did not see the potential of any upstream activity in Pakistan, as climatic conditions there were not conducive to oil palm.
“FGVH, therefore, has no intention to undertake oil palm plantation activities in Pakistan. Although we have plans to expand our land bank for oil palm, rubber and sugar plantations, our immediate focus is on South-East Asia, given the suitability of the soil and climatic conditions in this region,” he said.