Saturday, December 15, 2007

Economy may grow faster on rise of biodiesel sector

By Biz Times

THE Malaysian economy is expected to achieve more rapid growth with the rise of the biodiesel industry, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said today.

He said worldwide demand for biodiesel is expected to increase significantly in the near future, providing a boost for Malaysia as the major producer of palm oil.

“Worldwide demand for biodiesel is expected to explode and this will ensure that the price (of palm oil) is at a satisfactory and stable level,” Najib said.

“So we don’t have worry about the palm oil price falling to a low level as it did before,” he told reporters after officiating the biodiesel factory of Mission Biotechnologies Sdn Bhd at Kuantan port.

Also present were Pahang Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob, Mission Biotechnologies’ chairman Tan Sri Razak Ramli and Mission Biofuels Ltd Australia’s chairman Dario Amara.

Najib said analysts have forecast that the palm oil price, now at RM2,900 per tonne, will not fall below the RM2,400 per tonne level with expansion of the industry.

On competition from other countries, he said Malaysia has a major edge, especially in the supply of palm oil.

In his speech, Najib said the government plans to increase palm oil output by another 30 per cent by 2010 to cater to export demand as well as demand from biodiesel producers.

He said Malaysia is now producing 15 million tonnes per annum and the demand for biodiesel is expected to triple to 30 million tonnes by 2010.

*The KLCI closed 0.92% or 13.16 points lower at 1,410.56. I think Growth will also be slower over the next two quarters