Government Web site http://188.8.131.52/government/ said the tariff would be suspended two months after an order suspending it was officially published.
Normally publication in the government gazette takes place days after the web site announcement. ‘The suspension of the tariff is part of the process of removing import duties on commodities which Russia does not produce, or produces in insufficient quantity,’ an Economy Ministry spokeswoman said.
Under Russian legislation, a tariff is initially set or removed for a period of nine months, after which the government has to decide whether to extend the force of its decision, or to reverse it.
Unpackaged tropical oils constitute the bulk of these commodities imports to Russia.
Russia imports around 550,000-600,000 tonnes of palmoil and around 150,000 tonnes of palm kernel and coconut oil a year. The main suppliers are Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines, Vladimir Petrichenko, an analyst with WJ InterAgro trading company, told Reuters.
In March 2006, the Economy Ministry said the request to remove the tariff on palm oil had been launched by privately held confectionery maker US Mars Inc. and the world’s No. 2 soft drink company, PepsiCo Inc. PEP.N, which has a snack plant in Russia and plans to build another one.