JAKARTA (Reuters) – Indonesia has seized at least 81,000 liters of cooking oil bound for East Timor, the commerce ministry said, as the Southeast Asian country seeks to enforce a ban export of crude palm oil and its derivatives, including cooking oil.
At least eight shipping containers containing cooking oil and other items were confiscated at the port of Tanjung Perak on April 28 in Surabaya on the island of Java after “the ship deceived (authorities) into not mentioning cooking oil in the export declaration document,” the Commerce Department said in a statement late Thursday.
Those found guilty of violating the cooking oil export ban could face a maximum of five years in prison and a fine of up to 5 billion rupees ($341,997), Sihard Hadjopan said. Pohan, director at the Ministry of Commerce. Authorities did not name the vessel or the owner of the cargo.
Indonesia, the world’s largest palm oil producer, has since late last month halted exports of crude palm oil and refined products in a bid to control soaring palm oil prices. cooking in the country.
The export ban has rattled global vegetable oil markets that were already struggling after the war in Ukraine cut off much of the sunflower oil supply. Palm oil accounts for more than a third of the global vegetable oil market, while Indonesia accounts for around 60% of palm oil supply.
Chief Economy Minister Airlangga Hartarto said the export ban would remain in place until bulk cooking oil prices fall to Rs 14,000 per liter nationwide . On Thursday, Commerce Ministry data showed that bulk cooking oil was being sold at 16,600 rupees per liter ($1 = 14,620.0000 rupees).
(Reporting by Bernadette Christina; Editing by Ed Davies)
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