BEIJING: Sime Darby Plantation Bhd (Sime Darby Plantation), the world’s largest producer of certified sustainable palm oil, yesterday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with China’s COFCO Group Co Ltd (COFCO) to collaborate on a number of palm oil related ventures.
The signing event, held at the China World Summit Wing, was witnessed by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad as part of his five-day official visit to China.
The MOU includes a joint research on the health benefits of palm oil, developing capabilities to manufacture specialty oils and fats, and establishing joint sales and marketing activities to promote high value differentiated palm products in China.
Through these initiatives, both SDP and COFCO hope to create greater demand for certified sustainable palm oil and increase trade volumes between the two companies.
“Sime Darby Plantation is excited with the prospect of a close collaboration with COFCO, a leading agriproduct merchandiser and food production company in China. This memorandum of understanding truly reflects our aspiration to be the leader in promoting the health benefits of palm oil and to produce certified-sustainable, high value palm oil products for the global market,” said Tan Sri Mohd Bakke Salleh, Sime Darby Plantation executive deputy chairman and managing director upon signing the MOU.
“We look forward to seeing the positive results of combining Sime Darby Plantation R&D capabilities with COFCO’s expertise in advanced health-based food research,” he added.
Under the terms of the memorandum, SDP and COFCO will conduct further research on the health benefits of products such as palm tocotrienol, red palm olein, and palm kernel oil.
In addition, both companies intend to develop specialty products such as premium shortening and bakery fats for the Chinese market, and to explore possibilities to co-manufacture these healthy oils and specialty fats in Malaysia.
“China is a key market for Malaysian palm oil and SDP is proud to contribute towards increasing trade volumes and strengthening of relations between Malaysia and China. We view our cooperation with COFCO as a significant milestone in enhancing the commercial relationships of both countries.
“We would like to applaud the Ministry of Primary Industries for its role in initiating this collaboration and convey our highest appreciation to the government for its continuous support to the Malaysian palm oil industry,” added Mohd Bakke.