KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian palm oil futures fell as much as 10 per cent on Tuesday, their most in over a decade, on mounting fears that a fast-spreading coronavirus in China will hit demand, amid a diplomatic spat with India.

The benchmark palm oil contract for April delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange hit its lowest since Nov 15, 2019 at 2,575 ringgit ($633.46) per tonne when markets closed on Tuesday. This was the biggest drop since prices fell 10.3pc on Oct. 24, 2008.

“It is because of the virus (that) all commodities are down,” a Kuala Lumpur-based trader told Reuters. China’s death toll from the virus has risen to 106 as of Monday, while the number of total confirmed cases surged to 4,515.

After three months of sharp gains, palm oil prices have declined 15.6pc so far in January, mainly after New Delhi slapped curbs on imports of refined palm oil and informally asked traders to halt all palm imports from Malaysia due to a diplomatic row.

Published in Dawn, January 29th, 2020

Opinion

Awaiting orders
25 Oct 2021

Awaiting orders

Orders are given for demolition. Some structures go down. Some still stand.
Is it our own?
25 Oct 2021

Is it our own?

It is fair to ask what truly determines our success.
Up, up and away
Updated 25 Oct 2021

Up, up and away

Irate Twitterati want Superman to stop meddling.
No-trust resolution dynamics
Updated 24 Oct 2021

No-trust resolution dynamics

It is heartening that the effort to remove a chief minister is following constitutional norms.

Editorial

25 Oct 2021

Party to a vile campaign

THE PTI government’s hostility towards the media and its intolerance for dissent is well known. The target of ...
Financial crisis
Updated 25 Oct 2021

Financial crisis

DESPITE having progressed to ‘very good step’ and being ‘close to concluding the agreement’ a few days back,...
25 Oct 2021

Morals and Pemra

TIME and again, Pemra has come under fire for issuing arbitrary instructions to TV channels on matters ranging from...
Anti-government rallies
Updated 24 Oct 2021

Anti-government rallies

Banning a party because it can create a public nuisance sets a dangerous precedent which can be repeated to justify future bans.
24 Oct 2021

End of polio?

AFTER a long struggle, the reward is finally in sight. With only a single case of wild poliovirus reported this year...
24 Oct 2021

Heritage work

IT is encouraging that, slowly, projects of heritage conservation and preservation appear to be taking off. These...