The Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities (MPIC) aims to implement the usage of B10 biodiesel within this year, according to its minister Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong in a Bernama report.

“We have met carmakers, petrol station operators and I think we will have a few more meetings,” Mah said, adding that the ministry will study and address the concerns raised at the meetings. He said that the implementation of B10 is significant as it will help reduce the stockpile of palm oil in the country, and increase the price of crude palm oil.

This comes after the Malaysian Automotive Association (MAA) said that it has no qualms with the implementation of B10 biodiesel, but only if its principals are able to provide warranty for their vehicles.

“Until today, they haven’t set a date as to when it is going to be implemented, because they are (still) listening to all the stakeholders, whether it is from MAA members, from the bus and lorry operator associations, other ministries and from the oil companies. And I think, we indicated to the government that we’re not ready,” she said.

Aishah said that the association does not require the support of the government, but rather the support of its principals. “We must be able to have warranty on the vehicles before we can implement. Alternative pumps, that’s what we are asking for, they must have both B7 and B10 pumps throughout the whole country at all stations,” she explained.

Malaysia Automotive Institute CEO Madani Sahari spoke to Bloomberg TV Malaysia, saying that ongoing discussions with stakeholders should hopefully resolve the issue. “The next step is to get the stakeholders to reconvene, and to agree on the fundamentals; from a testing and methodology standpoint, and what we can agree upon in terms of expected deliverables.”

So far there have been conflicting statements from the MAA and the Malaysian Biodiesel Asssociation (MBA), respectively: the former said that biodiesel of the B10 blend proportion and higher could cause engine damage, while the latter said there is no such issue.

The MAA sent a letter to the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI), claiming the usage of biodiesel in grades higher than B7 may result in fatty-acid methyl ester (FAME) mixing with the motor oil, causing the oil to thin and possibly leading to sludging in the engine.

The sale of B10 diesel was supposed to have begun in June, but this was then delayed until further notice. At a Malaysian Automotive Association (MAA) briefing last week, MAA president Datuk Aishah Ahmad said that no date has yet been set as to when the programme will officially be implemented, because the government was listening to all stakeholders.