Published on November 7th, 2022 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Is Our Finance Minister Promoting Bio-Diesel?
About 5 years ago there was a ‘move’ to promote bio-diesel, since Malaysia is a major producer. This picture might be a teaser that bio-diesel fuel will make a comeback, especially for the transportation industry. What do you think?
At the time the role of the biodiesel industry was not to replace petroleum diesel, but to help create a balanced energy policy with the most benefit to palm oil producers.
Biodiesel was at the time one of several alternative fuels designed to extend the usefulness of petroleum, and the longevity and cleanliness of diesel engines.
Then in 2019, our former Prime Minister, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad urged the local palm oil industry to join other regional countries using B20 biodiesel fuel with success.
The first and closest example was Indonesia where Indonesia had standardized the use of B20 biodiesel since January 2016 with success and Tun urged the players in the Malaysian palm oil industry to be brave enough to explore new markets and prove that the country’s palm oil quality was one of the best.
Tun further added that Indonesia had also successfully implemented the B20 programme which was a blend of 20% palm methyl ester and 80% petroleum diesel since January 2016 without any problem.
Meanwhile, Tun also mentioned that “Now, the biodiesel programme in Indonesia has successfully reduced the import of diesel and strengthened the palm oil industry and the country’s economy.”
Tun also said that this new biodiesel programme would be taken seriously by the international trade and industry ministry (MITI) in its drafting of the National Automotive Policy 2019.
“We should ensure that in the future, only diesel vehicles that can consume more than 10% biodiesel fuel are sold in Malaysia.
“Malaysia needs to improve on higher levels of (biodiesel) blend to strengthen the demand for domestic palm oil.
“I hope that all stakeholders will be fully prepared to accept the B20 biodiesel fuel by 2020,” he said then.
Interestingly, at the time, Mahathir added that the biodiesel programme was important for the country as palm oil was the “golden crop” of Malaysia and had been supporting the country’s economy for a long time.
“The use of biodiesel will have a positive impact on the palm oil industry by reducing palm oil stocks and further stabilising palm oil prices,” he added.
It would also allow 650,000 palm oil smallholders to enjoy more stable prices and an increase in revenue, he added.