NEW YORK– A high-level stakeholder meeting held at the UN Headquarters in New York becomes a milestone for Indonesia’s oil palm sub-sector. In the forum, the government and the business community are unanimous in affirming Indonesia’s position regarding the sustainable development of oil palm sector.

“The strengthening of ISPO is a real commitment from the government and business community in Indonesia to build a sustainable oil palm sector,” said Musdalifah Mahmud, Deputy of Food and Agriculture of the Coordinating Ministry of Economic Affairs, in her press release during a speech in an international forum initiated by UNDP at the United Nations’ Headquarters in New York, United States, Wednesday (6/9) local time.

The point to be achieved in the world forum attended by approximately 300 delegates from various countries is how the world can balance production needs while maintaining environmental sustainability. In addition to Musdalifah, the Chairman of Indonesian Palm Oil Association (Gapki), Joko Supriyono also spoke in the forum. Musdalifah hopes that by mid next year, points related to the strengthening of ISPO (Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil) can be met. ISPO is a mandatory sustainability standard for Indonesian oil palm plantations. “The strengthening of ISPO is a momentum to raise sustainability standards of Indonesia’s oil palm sector to a level that can be accepted by the world,” Musdalifah said.

Meanwhile, in his speech, Joko Supriyono asserted that the business community in Indonesia is very committed to achieve environmentally-friendly management of oil palm plantations. Currently, the business community and the government are working together to improve the productivity of oil palm plants especially for smallholder farmers. “Instead of expanding the land, we are focusing on improving plants’ productivity,” Joko said.

Joko said, in the midst of demands for sustainability, Indonesia must maintain its position as the world’s biggest oil palm producer. “Of course, as the biggest and most sustainable palm oil producer,” said Joko who was applauded by the participants.

In addition to representatives from Indonesia, also present as speakers in the UNDP forum were, Liberia’s Minister of Agriculture, Seklau E. Wiles, Paraguay’s Vice Minister of Agriculture, Marcos Medina, and the President of Sociedade Rural Brasileira, Marcelo Vieira. Joko Supriyono’s speech received positive response from the audience including the UNDP (United Nations Agency for Development Program).

“We know how the oil palm sector received the spotlight on deforestation issues and land fires. We’ve heard how the government and the business community in Indonesia are committed to balancing economic and environmental interests,” said Andrew Bovarnick, UNDP’s Global Head, who was the moderator for discussion.

Andrew also considers ISPO as a very valuable instrument to achieve sustainability in oil palm plantation sector in Indonesia. In addition to the palm oil sub-sector in Indonesia, this UNDP high-level meeting also addressed sustainability issues in Liberia, Paraguay and Brazil.

Source: Investor Daily

Note: As it is known, Korindo Group’s plantation division has obtained ISPO since December 2016, and this makes Korindo as the first company that received ISPO in Papua. In last April 2017, Korindo Group has also received the apreciation from the Director General of Plantation of the Ministry of Agriculture, on company’s efforts in the practices and commitment to the prevention and the control of land and forest fire in palm oil plantation in the eastern part of Indonesia, particularly in Papua province. (see Korindo News)

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