Palm Oil Industry Profile

As the world’s second-largest producer of the commodity, the oil palm industry is not only vital to the Malaysian economy but it also plays a pivotal role in ensuring that the demand of a growing global population is met. Malaysia has a vital role to play in achieving the rising global need for oils and fats, as Malaysia is one of the major producer and exporter countries of palm oil and palm oil products. Each year, Malaysia produces almost 20 million tons of palm oil traded in 160 different countries. At present, Malaysia accounts for a significant contribution to the world’s palm oil production and export which is 39% and 44%, respectively.

Malaysia is also home to the West African palm, first introduced to Malaysia (then known as Malaya) as an ornamental plant in 1875 and now has turned into a huge industry. In Malaysia, palm oil sector alone contributes 3,5% to the national Gross Domestic Product(GDP). As of 2017, the Malaysian national revenue in palm oil reached 82 million.

The palm oil industry in Malaysia is labour-concentrated where palm oil growth and production provide jobs to more than half a million people in Malaysia. As data suggested that 5,2 million direct beneficiaries are dependent on the palm oil sector, consisting of employees, farmers and their families (2017). A massive 17.73 million tons of palm oil and 2.13 tons of palm kernel oil have been produced from about 4.49 million hectares of land and around 40% of oil palm cultivation is owned by nearly 640,000 smallholders.