KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 28): Palm oil industry players must remain committed and stay firm on fostering sustainable development and promoting responsible growth for the industry, amidst efforts to mitigate the effects from the Covid-19 health crisis.
Bursa Malaysia Bhd chief executive officer Datuk Muhamad Umar Swift (pictured) said while Covid-19 is said to have affected about 25% of the world's edible oil demand, continuous efforts to revitalise plantations must be made to increase the competitiveness of palm oil through increased farm productivity.
"Apart from that, we need to have a strong push towards the implementation of sustainability. I believe Malaysia has done well in this area, where over 90% of 452 palm oil mills in the country have obtained the Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil certification.
"The diversification of the application of palm oil and the opening of new markets are important, and the positive palm oil campaign to highlight the industrys good work and educating consumers about the use of sustainable palm oil must continue," he said in his closing remark at the Virtual Palm Oil Conference 2020 today.
Muhamad Umar also said that weaker external markets, lower crude oil prices, as well as disruptions to the supply chains and logistics will inadvertently impact all palm oil-producing countries.
"The Covid-19 pandemic has become a source of severe economic challenge, having a profound impact across all industries.
While the plantation industry is considered fortunate compared with other industries such as aviation and tourism, industry challenges will continue to persist in the short-term," he said.