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SEA urges to restrain Edible Oil imports from SAFTA nations

India's edible-oil traders’ body, Solvent Extractors Association (SEA) has urged New Delhi to restrain imports of refined edible oils under SAFTA by tank lorries and in packed form from its immediate neighbourhood as increasing zero-duty imports hurt local millers and oilseed farmers.

Every day about 800-1000 tonnes of RBD palmolein and refined soyabean oils are coming from Bangladesh in tank lorry and packed form through land boarder of West Bengal and Assam. The following land ports being used to push the refined edible oil in India under SAFTA at Nil duty, the trade body said.

This cargo is being released by Custom on the basis of bond on the same day of arrival without tested by PHO. Usually when cargo arrived by ship, before releasing, 100% cargo being tested by FSSAI and Custom which takes minimum 4-7 days.

The trade body urged government to direct Custom and FSSAI Authorities at these land ports to take appropriate action to stop the import.

The Solvent Extractors Association (SEA) has also pointed out that edible oil tankers from Bangladesh are having high transfat of 4 to 5% and being used for adulteration in the local markets. There is no checks for selling and marketing such imported refined oils in India and could be serious health hazardous too, the association said.

“We appeal to the Government to kindly check and regulate the import from Bangladesh and other neighbouring countries under SAFTA by roads as there is neither real value addition nor the check on quality and SAFTA norms are flouted,” SEA said.

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