PalmOilMagazine, JAKARTA – Responding to palm oil discrimination by European Union, the government also claims justice in the context of sustainable vegetable oil. The same and competitive standards of sustainability should be running to every kind of vegetable oil including more holistic environmental approach.
“Environmental issues are not only about deforestation though it matters. It also significantly gets narrower, namely because of the success of palm oil moratorium,” Vice Minister of External Affairs Indonesian Republic, Mahendra Siregar in a webinar held by Indonesian Palm Oil Association (IPOA) which PalmOilMagazine did join on Wednesday (31/3/2021).
World Resources Institute (WRI) confirmed that the deforestation in Indonesia gets narrower while in Europe and Australia, the deforestation gets increasing up to 10%. Indonesia maintains its commitment to reduce emission which has been reaching 29% from the early condition and would reduce up to 41% within the international supports.
“The comparable study showed that palm oil contributes to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) while rapeseed and other kinds of vegetable oil are not contributing to reduce CO2,” he said.
Siregar also mentioned that since 1995, palm oil implements and obeys almost 700 kinds of certification while rapeseed oil or sunflower oil just obeys 30 kinds of certification in the same period. Kinds of requirement which have been joined and implemented never solve discrimination to palm oil.
He also thought that fight for palm oil discrimination, namely the policy which would phase out palm oil by European Union, the Government of Indonesia through ASEAN would do holistic approach to take palm oil in the sustainable vegetable oil comparison in scientific study in ASEAN or in other producer countries. Meanwhile sustainable development goals (SDGs) should be the main references to promote the balanced approach among the economic development, social progress, and environment.
Until now the discussion of sustainable vegetable oil would always be proposed through Joint Working Group after the signing of EU-ASEAN Strategic Partnership in December last year. Ten countries joining ASEAN agreed to propose the interest in agricultural sector and rural communities because the essence of agricultural sector and vegetable oil is essential for members of ASEAN namely in the rural.
In the economic, ASEAN is one important region in the world both in the market potential and resources. In the politics, ASEAN is the strategic region both in geopolitics and geostrategy. “We (ASEAN) are not the issue but part of the solution. We certainly is the solution to lead by giving the good samples and model” Siregar firmly emphasized. (T2)