Indonesia Cuts September Palm Oil Export Tax to 13.5%

Indonesia will cut its tax on exports of crude palm oil to 13.5 percent in September, the lowest rate this year, from 15 percent this month as prices of the commodity declined.

The base price for calculating the levy will be cut to $918 per metric ton, Deddy Saleh, director general of foreign trade at the Trade Ministry, said in an e-mailed statement today. That compares with a base price of $950 in August.

Indonesia, the world’s largest palm oil producer, reviews the tax rates and base export prices every month, based on average rates in Kuala Lumpur, Rotterdam and Jakarta. Palm oil on the Malaysia Derivatives Exchange, the global benchmark, has fallen 5.4 percent this year as the sovereign debt crisis in Europe and a slowdown in China reduced demand for cooking oils.

The government will keep the tax for cocoa-bean exports unchanged at 5 percent in September, while the base price will be raised to $2,087 a ton from $1,950, Saleh said.

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