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Iran Vegetable-Oil Buying Seen by Oil World Rising on Crush Drop

Dec. 25 (Bloomberg) -- Iran’s vegetable-oil imports are forecast to jump in the fourth quarter of 2012 as lower purchases of soybeans curb domestic crush, reducing local oil and meal production, industry researcher Oil World said.

Soybean oil imports are forecast to climb to 160,000 to 170,000 metric tons in the three months through December from 42,000 tons in the year-earlier period, the Hamburg-based researcher wrote in an e-mailed report. Argentina is the main supplier for the three months this year, it said.

Iran’s imports of vegetable oils and soybean meal picked up since June as the effects of a financial embargo on the country’s trade subsided, Oil World reported in July. Combined imports of soybean oil and sunflower seed oil are expected to be the highest in five years, the researcher said.

“Iran is sharply stepping up imports of vegetable oils in the last quarter,” Oil World wrote. “Larger vegetable oil import requirements were partly due to a sharp decline of Iranian soybean imports, which are virtually cut in half.”

Fourth-quarter sunflower seed oil imports are forecast to be 50,000 to 60,000 tons, compared with 42,000 tons a year ago, with Ukraine the main supplier, it said.

For all of 2012, soybean oil purchases are expected to climb to 529,000 tons from 429,000 tons last year, while imports of sunflower seed oil may more than double to 314,000 tons from 142,000 tons, the report showed.

To contact the reporter on this story: Rudy Ruitenberg in Paris at rruitenberg@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Carpenter at ccarpenter2@bloomberg.net

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