'B10 biodiesel rollout requires political will'

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KUALA LUMPUR (March 6): Malaysia could see its current B7 biodiesel mandate rise to 10% for the transport sector after the 2018 elections, said Malaysian Biodiesel Association president U.R. Unnithan.

Speaking at a plenary session of the 29th Palm and Lauric Oils Conference and exhibition (POC) today, Unnithan, who is the founder and group chief executive officer of Sumwin Solutions Malaysia Sdn Bhd, said the implementation of the B10 mandate requires a political will. The biodiesel B10 is a blend of 10% palm methyl ester and 90% regular diesel.

He is of the view that the move from B7 to B10 will see an increase of 3 sen per litre, adding that the retail price of diesel will increase by 26 sen per litre for every US$10 per barrel increase in crude oil price.

The mandate would create better demand and floor price for crude palm oil, he said.

The B10 biodiesel programme by the Malaysian Palm Oil Board was launched in 2013 for the Plantation Industries and Commodities Ministry's vehicles.

According to Unnithan, of the vehicles put to test, there was not a single issue with B10 and no signs of drop in engine performance.

"The technicalities are not the reasons that the government are not implementing the B10. I think that there is more than enough evidence [including the fact that] drivers [from the survey] did not report any loss of performance in terms of power, pick-up and noise," he added.