Transforming Papua: The Social and Economic Benefits of Palm Oil Plantations for 2045 Gold Generations

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Chairman of Indonesian Palm Oil Association in Human Resource Development, Sumarjono Saragih (right) handed over a book about children friendly – palm oil guideline to the representative of Papua Province. Photo by: Special

 PALMOILMAGAZINE, PAPUA – Palm oil plantations not only generate economic benefits but also impose significant social responsibilities. Despite the potential for substantial social advantages, these benefits are often overlooked. Palm oil plantations have the capacity to drive social transformation, which can yield multiple benefits when leveraged effectively.

Since palm oil cultivation began on Sumatera Island and expanded across Indonesia, numerous villages have experienced positive social changes due to good agricultural practices. These practices have greatly contributed to village development, and similar potential exists for implementation in Papua Province.

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Sumarjono Saragih, Chairman of Human Resource Development at the Indonesian Palm Oil Association (IPOA), noted that palm oil plantations in Papua are relatively new and face considerable opposition. This resistance often disregards the positive impacts that palm oil cultivation can bring.

Also Read: Sustainable Palm Oil for Better Children

The reality is that the indigenous people of Papua require special attention, as evidenced by various government programs and specific autonomy measures designed to address their unique needs.

“But the programs would not be enough if many parties do not support, including palm oil plantation sectors,” he recently said to Palmoilmagazine.com.

Nevertheless, Saragih continued, apart from the controversy, palm oil existence (development) in many villages in Papua would significantly bring the positive. Palm oil would create new economic chances for the people both as the workers and plasma smallholders.

“Besides, palm oil would also contribute to better life system by having increasing education, health, and other social orders, namely for the children and the female,” he explained.

Children friendly – palm oil good practices would be one way to prepare 2045 gold – generations. For the next 20 years, it would need the same efforts and concrete things to prepare Papua Emas 2045.

“That is why the roles of palm oil in the villages would be very significant. By publishing the right policy (ies) and good collaboration, palm oil would be the main economic motor,” Saragih who is also the Chairman and Founder Worker Initiatives for Sustainable Palm Oil (WISPO), said.

IPOA took the initiative to promote children friendly palm oil in Papua. Together with IPOA members in the province, IPOA took the governments, civil organizations, the religious figures to promote children protection.

The children should be protected, their rights should be respected and fulfilled by providing safe and comfortable care room. It needs to confirm they would get access to get education, available health facility. These good practices should be realized in every society to create the 2045 gold generations in Papua and Indonesia.

Through the seminar and workshop about Children Friendly Palm Oil Promotion with the big theme “Papua Emas 2045 Bersama Sawit” in Jayapura on 5 – 6 June 2024, IPOA encouraged that children protection that started from the plantation would get wider to the society. The initiative is known as Sawit Indonesia Ramah Anak (SIRA) for Papua Emas 2045.

Saragih also emphasized it would be significant to get collaboration. Through the holistic and sustainable approach, palm oil would be the key to realize Papua Emas 2045, making palm oil as the main motor in social and economic transformation in the province. (T2)

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