More palm oil importers approved

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The Minister of Trade and Industry is selecting additional palm oil importers through the respective regional trade and industry office and the two City Administrations.
The new directive has been sent to the respective trade and industry offices to select the potential importers based on strict criteria.
“The Ministry gave the mandate to select capable importers and send them to the Trade Office in the name of transparency,” Wendemu Flate Communication Director of the Ministry told Capital.
Some of Trade and industry offices already began selecting importers based on the given criteria.
Currently five private companies are importing palm oil; AHFA PLC, Biftu Adugna Business S.C., Al-Sam International, Belayneh Kindie Import & Export (BKIE), and Hameressa Edible Oil S.C.
Moreover, the so called endowments such as Wendo Trading & Investment Plc, Guna Trading House Plc and Ambassel Trading House Plc, will also join the business. Alle Bejimla, the state-owned wholesaler, will also take part in the import.
“The assumption behind choosing those importers is on the consensus to build an edible oil factory and substitute imports,” Wemdimu said.
However no effort has been made so far to build factories in any of those endowments even though little progress has been witnessed in some of the private companies.
Ethiopia mainly relies on imported palm oil from countries like Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore in order to satisfy its edible oil consumption.
Palm oil covers 96 percent of the total consumption while only four percent of it is covered by a few domestic manufactures with low level of production capacity and other importers.
Last fiscal year, Ethiopia imported 73,434 liters of palm oil according to the data from Minister of Trade and Industry.