Thu, 22 May 2008
New investment plans totaling $376.5 million were announced last week for the plantation sector, as returns continue high for commodities such as crude palm oil.

Singapore-listed Indofood Agri Resources (Indoagri) said it will soon acquire 60% of PT Laju Perdana Indah at a price of Rp375 billion ($40.5 million), Asia Pulse reported Wednesday.

The subsidiary of food giant Indofood Sukses Makmur will acquire the stake from PT Bangun Swriwijaya Sentosa (BSS), which owns 80% of Laju Perdana, which has sugar plantations in South Sumatra and a sugar factory in Central Java.

PT Tunas Baru Lampung said it will invest Rp1.26 trillion ($136 million) to open 59,500 hectares of oil palm plantations in Palembang and Pontianak. It will build 29,500 hectares of plantation in Banyuasin, Palembang, including 13,500 hectares for small farmers.

Tunas Lampung currently has 100,000 hectares of plantation land with 50,000 hectares already planted with oil palm. It reported sales last year at Rp1.01 trillion, up 190% year-on-year and net profit at Rp128.2 billion from Rp2.1 billion.

In the third announcement, Singapore-listed Wilmar Group said it will build five palm oil factories and cooking oil plants this year with an investment of Rp900 billion ($100 million).

The company already has 24 crude palm oil (CPO) processing plants operating at 90% of installed capacity, a company official said.

The Wilmar Group has 150,000 hectares of oil palm plantations in Sumatra and Kalimantan and is seeking expansion to increase supply to its CPO processing plants.

Also committing another $100 million was Bakrie Plantation, which said it would spend the sum on expansion, including $40 million in share participation in subsidiary PT Agri Resources BV to give it a 51% stake, up from the current 25%.

The company said it will expand its oil palm plantations in Sumatra by 50,000 hectares with an investment of $40 million.



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