Birgunj, Jan 16: Most of the vegetable oil and ghee industries in Parsa and Bara districts are affected after India imposed ban on import of palm oil. It is said 90 per cent of these industries are ruined due to this.
Large investment of industrialists is at risk with India's prohibition on import of palm oil. Demand for palm oil is high in India and it is one of the major items of export from Nepal.
The refined palm oil which was in the list of export in fiscal year 2018/19 has been removed from the list from July 16 to December 15 in this fiscal year. The industries in this area are economically hit after the removal of palm oil from the list of 20 items exported to India.
The palm oil is imported into Nepal via India from third countries as Indonesia and Canada among others. It is processed in Nepal and then again sent to the Indian market.
The Indian government has banned the import of palm oil citing that the reentry of the product into India has affected the Indian industries.
"India's unilateral prohibition on palm oil has pushed 90 per cent of the oil industries in Parsa and Bara on the verge of closure," Subodh Kumar Gupta, the President of Nepal Rice, Lentil, Oil Industry Association, said.
Palm oil worth Rs 18.31 billion was exported to India from Nepal through the Birgunj customs point last year. Fourteen oil industries in Parsa and Bara districts alone exported 160 thousand metric tonnes palm oil worth Rs 11.72 billion to India via the Birgunj customs transit.
However, palm oil export to India has halted since last April after India imposed a ban on the import of this commodity, Customs Officer at the Birgunj Customs Office, Ramesh Sukamani, said.