Malaysia is delaying the start of its higher B10 biodiesel mandate by a month to July, and is aiming to complete full implementation by August, Reuters reported on 20 June.

The government was in talks with petroleum companies about delaying the start to take into account the time needed for oil companies to reset blending ratios and procure enough palm methyl ester (PME), the Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities said in an email to the news agency.

Malaysia had earlier said it would raise the country’s biodiesel mandate to 10% from the current 7% for the transport sector and to 7% for the industrial sector.

Reuters said blending to the new standards was expected to consume 709,000 tonnes/year of palm oil against 500,000 tonnes under the current biodiesel mandate.

"The implementation of both B10 and B7 programmes requires coordination and cooperation from all petroleum companies, including Petronas, Shell, Chevron, Petron and BHP," said the ministry in its e-mail.

Malaysia had 18 biodiesel plants in operation with 2.3M tonnes/year of capacity, the ministry said.

According to the Reuters report, palm oil traders, plantation companies and analysts had earlier questioned the feasibility of the government's B10 programme, citing low crude oil prices and weak implementation policies as barriers to the mandate's effectiveness.