Palm oil: Refiners call for price adjustment as import costs rise

(Business in Cameroon) – The price of refined palm oil in Cameroon recently rose from 1,100 FCFA to 1,400 FCFA per litre. While the population is already complaining about the increase, which is also frowned upon by the government, refiners want it to be higher.

During a meeting held on March 18 in Yaoundé with the government and economic operators, the employers’ group (Gicam) called for a higher increase in the selling price of palm oil. The association said the measure will help offset the recent rise in commodity and freight prices in the international market.

Gicam offered 2,040 FCFA per litre, nearly 1,000 FCFA more than the initial price and 700 FCFA more than the current market price. Between January 2021 and January 2022, the price of a ton of crude palm oil jumped 75% on the world market, and rose another 35% in the first quarter of 2022.

To ensure the supply of refined palm oil production units operating in Cameroon, the government recently authorized the import of 143,000 tonnes of crude palm oil. However, while this volume will reduce the structural production deficit currently estimated at 160,000 tonnes annually, according to data from the Association of Oilseed Refiners (Asroc), it will add to the already high import bills.

Brice R. Mbodiam

Eleanor C. William