Jariya Sutthichaiya, Secretary-General of the Agricultural Economics Office (Source: bangkokpost.com)

Bangkok (VNA) – The Thai Government has ordered the Internal Security Operations Command to closely inspect crude palm oil movement along the Thailand-Malaysia border to prevent smuggling from the neighbouring country.

According to Jariya Sutthichaiya, Secretary-General of the Agricultural Economics Office, higher prices of crude palm oil (CPO) in Thailand could trigger smuggling from Malaysia.

Thailand's CPO price averaged 19.20 baht (0.63 USD) a kilogramme in June, or 6-7 baht higher than that in Malaysia.

The government is afraid that CPO smuggling from Malaysia, if left unchecked, may cause a decrease in domestic palm prices, Jariya said after the June 28 meeting of the National Oil Palm Policy Committee.

Average palm nut prices rose to 3.45-4.10 baht a kg in June, up from 2.70 baht in May, while CPO stocks fell to 270,000 tonnes from 400,000 in May.

Permanent Commerce Secretary Boonyarit Kalayanamit said the committee on June 28 approved a revised palm oil strategy to fit the national 20-year strategy (2018-37).

The strategy covers six areas: production, innovation, standards, energy, marketing and management.

The committee agreed that Thailand should focus on innovation, increase the value of palm products and develop oleo, a raw material for cosmetics, soaps and chemicals.

The committee also resolved to maintain palm oil farmland at 800,000ha, producing 16.8 million tonnes of palm nuts.-VNA