India cuts soy and sunoil import tax to keep lid on edible oil prices

20 Aug 2021 | Liliana Minton

The Indian government confirmed on Friday it will reduce the import duty on soyoil and sunoil by 7.5 percentage points with immediate effect, as it continues its efforts to keep a lid on edible oil prices, which have surged this year.

The new import tax structure for soyoil and sunoil, published in the official gazette on Friday, will last until the end of September, but can be extended if prices remain at high levels.

After the import duty cut, soyoil and sunoil imports will be subject to an effective tax rate of 30.25%, from the original 38.5%, thus a net reduction rate of 8.25 percentage points.

“The import duty reduction is just up to September 30, therefore it is unlikely to result in fresh agressive purchases of CDSBO [soyoil] and CSFO [sunoil] from India,” Anilkumar Bagani, research head at Mumbai-based vegetable oil broker Sunvin Group, said to Agricensus.

“There would be some impact on nearby shipment however, which are yet to be priced,” added Bagani.

“This [lower duty] brings more uncertainty as many importers have already paid duty,” Kumar Bromex, an India-based broker told Agricensus.

The Indian government had already lowered the import duty for palm oil (CPO) and refined palm oil (RBD) on June 30, lasting until September 30, with the  same objective to lower edible oil prices.