High level Malaysian delegation headed by the Honorable Datuk Seri Shamsul Iskandar bin Mohd. Akin, Deputy Minister of Primary Industries in Malaysia along-with the Secretary General of Malaysian Palm Oil Ministry and other high profile officials from Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) and Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) visited Karachi to attend the Pakistan Edible Oil Conference which is being held today i.e. 19th January 2019 at Mövenpick Hotel, Karachi.Before attending Pakistan Edible Oil Conference the Honorable Datuk Seri Shamsul Iskandar bin Mohd. Akin held a press conference at Gulab Conference Room, Mövenpick Hotel, Karachi to outline the objectives of Malaysian Delegation’s visit to Pakistan Edible Oil Conference (PEOC) 2019. Datuk Seri Shamsul Iskandar bin Mohd. Akin said, Malaysia has always looked upon Pakistan as a special palm oil partner, given the special bonding between the major Pakistani and Malaysian oils and fats industry players. Over the years, the oils and fats trade between these two countries has expanded to products like oleo-chemicals, palm kernel expeller, cooking oil, confectionary fats and many other products being used by the food and non-food industries in Pakistan. This is reflected in the volume of Malaysian palm oil exported to Pakistan in 2017 which stood at 1.02 million MT, which was an increase of more than 15% compared to the previous year. I am happy to inform that as of November of 2018, Malaysian palm oil exports to Pakistan exceeded the volume exported in 2017 and it stood at 1.06 million MT, an impressive feat indeed. The value of Malaysian palm oil exported to Pakistan by end of November 2018 was about US$650 million.He said; “Pakistan’s oils and fats market has grown significantly, from 2.7 million metric tonnes in 2000 to over 4.4 million metric tonnes in 2017. The market has grown by almost double over this time and palm oil alone accounted for more than 50% of this total. Pakistan has always been among the most consistent buyers of Malaysian palm oil products and palm oil features as a major component of the growing bilateral trade between our two countries. It is my privilege to thank and honour all our Pakistani partners and friends for this continuous and unwavering support.” He was very optimistic on palm oil’s performance in Pakistan and said; “the strengthening of Malaysian palm oil in Pakistan is achieved through strong cooperation between our two countries. In fact, Pakistan is among the first export destinations in which Malaysia has major investments in bulking installation and refineries, the liquid cargo jetty dedicated for the handling of palm oil.On challenges he said; “the oils and fats industry is in a very challenging period despite the continued strong growth in demand. Although competition continues to be an important feature of all trade, there are opportunities ahead for all of us to forge partnerships and closer relationships to handle many areas of common interest that we may face. Above all, there is an even greater need for those in the oils and fats industry from both our countries to work together to meet the increasingly sophisticated appetite and demands of consumers.”Published in Daily Times, January 20th 2019.