China is increasing imports of palm oil partly because of lower prices compared to soyoil, Hamburg-based oilseeds analysts Oil World said.

“China has reportedly stepped up purchases of palm oil on the world market recently, which will result in a notable recovery of palm oil imports from the low arrivals in August,” Oil World said.

“Palm oil has improved its competitiveness vis-a-vis soyoil, stimulating recent purchases,” it added.

Asian fob palm oil prices were about $115-$137 a ton cheaper than U.S. and Brazilian soyoil, Oil World data showed.

Malaysia’s September palm oil exports surged 21.3 percent on the month in September, partly because of a rise in shipments to China to 302,000 tonnes from 133,000 tonn in August, Oil World noted.

“China sizably slowed imports of palm oil in July and August and reduced stocks but has become a more active buyer since,” it said.

China said on Sept. 29 it would sell some of its state edible oil reserves via public bidding to cool prices as strong demand continued.

Meanwhile, China continues to boycott imports of cheap Argentine soyoil in a wider trade dispute.