Jakarta – The government needs to involve the House of Representatives in lobbying the European government and parliament to discuss the boycott on palm oil products. Lobbying with the European Union Parliament has to be carried out in order to end the threat of boycott on palm oil products.
“If it happens, the government, or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has to involve the Commission IV of the House of Representatives in order to subdue the boycott on palm oil carried out by the European Parliament,” said Hamdhani, the member of Commission IV of the House of Representatives from NasDem faction, in a press release received by Borneonews, on Thursday (20/4/2017).
The European Union Parliament has been calling for the ban on imports of palm oil, which is considered as unsustainable, and not allowed to be used in biofuels. The vote has been done and the result shows 640 agreed, 18 refused, and 28 abstained.
The European Parliament also urges the European Union to introduce a single certification scheme for palm oil to go into the EU market. The purpose is to cope with the impact of unsustainable palm oil production, such as deforestation and habitat degradation, especially in Southeast Asia.
According to Hamdhani, the boycott on palm oil is a nightmare that can lead on the demise of palm oil smallholders. Therefore, he insists that Commission IV, which in charge of plantations and forestry, is involved to oversee the result of the meeting.
“Our biggest foreign exchange earner is palm oil, because oil, gas, and coal slump. Therefore, we have to conduct an international lobbying through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs involving the House of Representatives in the meeting with the European Union Parliament,” said Hamdhani during a Hearings at the Room of Commission IV, Senayan, Jakarta, on Tuesday (18/4/2017)
The meeting was carried out with the partners, that is the Coordinating Ministry of Economic Affairs, the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the President Director of PT Perkebunan Nusantara III.
According to Hamdhani, the European Union resolutions related to the local palm oil are in sequence with import rejection in France. He said that the European market has been resisting on Indonesian products. Nevertheless, he said that the government could turn the market for palm oil to Eastern Europe.
On the same occasion, another member of Commission IV, Sulaiman L Hamzah, thought that the attacks of several local and international NGOs had an impact on the EU resolutions. NGOs are too aggressive attacking the government, despite the positive development of the palm oil industry. It is preceded by the controlling of permits by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry.
“The measure that has to be taken now is to improve the legality of the smallholdings in the forest area to be useful for the community. Palm oil has been our top commodity,” said Sulaiman.
Sulaiman has seen the abnormal condition in the resolutions of the European Union on the Indonesian palm oil. He accused the European Union of playing the policy to kill the palm oil product and replace them with sunflower seeds oil.
“This is a structured agenda od the European Union. There is definitely a business competition in it,” said Sulaiman.. (RO/*/N).