Last month, ACAPMA entered into a formal partnership with the Petroleum Dealers Association of Malaysia (PDAM). PDAM is the peak body representing fuel dealers within Malaysia and has more than 500 member businesses who retail fuel under franchise arrangements with Petronas, Shell and BhP.

The agreement followed a recent international visit to a number of select dealer associations, state-owned oil corporations and government departments within South-East Asia; including Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore.

Meetings were also held with the Secretary-in-Charge of ASCOPE – the ASEAN Council on Petroleum.

The partnership with PDAM is an important first step in ACAPMA’s strategic engagement with the fuel industry in South-East Asia – a task considered to be necessary given the increasing strategic significance of this regional market to the future operation of the Australian domestic fuels market.

“As the peak industry body representing fuel distributors and fuel marketers in Australasia, we saw a need to develop closer ties with the south-east Asian market given the increasing volume of fuel imports being sourced from the Region”, said ACAPMA CEO Mark McKenzie.

“We are also aware of the likely near term deregulation of some key fuel markets in South-East Asia, most notably Malaysia, and are therefore seeking to build contact networks and a mutual understanding of business needs to smooth the way for Australian suppliers of petroleum products and services to do business in the wider region,” said Mark.

“The partnership with PDAM is an important first step in the achievement of these goals”, said Mark.

Under the partnership, ACAPMA and PDAM have committed to working together to promote Malaysian industry participation in the upcoming Asia Pacific Fuel Industry Forum which will be held in Singapore between 13 and 15 September 2016.

In addition, both Associations have committed to the sharing of information and the development of voluntary industry standards for the fuel retail industry within the wider Region.

This process will commence with a PDAM delegation visiting Sydney in May to learn more about the overall operation of the retail fuels market in Australia, gain a detailed understanding of Australia’s national competition laws, and secure briefings on the technology products that are used by fuel retailers in Australia (e.g. back-office systems, point of sales systems).

“The May visit is effectively a precursor to the APFI Forum later this year and is intended to provide some early insights about our industry’s capacity to support Malaysian businesses, as they prepare for a fully de-regulated market in the future”, said Mark

PDAM, in partnership with Petronas (the State-Owned Oil Company of Malaysia), has also provided strong support for ACAPMA’s participation in the 2016 ASEAN Council on Petroleum Summit.

To be held in Brunei in mid-May, ACAPMA’s participation in this Summit provides a very significant opportunity for executive level engagement with the state owned-oil companies that operate in the 10 economies that comprise ASEAN.

The PDAM partnership is one of a number of similar partnerships that are currently under negotiation with select economies in the Asia Pacific Region.

It is hoped that these partnerships – which will potentially be formalised by the establishment of an Asia Pacific Industry Body in 2017 – will provide a tangible opportunity for continued business and strategic dialogue between the fuel industry in Australia and that of the wider Asia-Pacific Region.

“The principal purpose of the Asia-Pacific engagement is to ensure that our members are continually provided with deep knowledge of the wider market in which they are operating, while simultaneously creating business opportunities for Australian petroleum support businesses that have the capacity to service Asian Markets as they prepare to deregulate”, said Mark.

Further information about the evolving dialogue with the dealer associations and state-owned oil companies in the Asia-Pacific Region will be provided as it comes to hand.