Mumbai: The government''s decision to stop the import of palm
oil at the southern port of Kochi has helped stabilise coconut prices and bring
the two oils to price parity.
Two weeks ago, the directorate general
of foreign trade, under the union commerce ministry, stopped palm oil imports
at Kochi port where 70,000-80,000 tonnes of palm oil arrive annually. India imports
palm oil mainly from Malaysia and Indonesia.
The prices of coconut oil are
now moving around Rs46 ($1.17) per kg. Packaged palm oil prices in southern India
are now ruling at about the same level as coconut oil, which is considered premium
oil used for cooking as well as toiletries.
are permitted at all other Indian ports, but the Kochi ban has increased transport
costs to Kerala.
Coconut oil prices have steadily fallen from about Rs72
per kg over the last two years.