Association chairman backs minister's move

( - The Indonesian government has made a major move with respect to Indonesian Palm Oil Pledge (IPOP), by declaring that it plans to study the content of the pledge in detail before making any decisions concerning it.

This move has been taken in the wake of numerous complaints being made, in particular from IPOP signatories themselves, about the difficulties they have experienced in implementing the pledge since its signing by major palm oil business groups at the end of September 2014, on the sidelines of the UN Climate Summit in New York.

"We support the plan of Indonesia's Minister of the Environment and Forestry to conduct an in-depth study of IPOPs content. Its important to avoid any confusion among Indonesian palm oil industry players and their stakeholders," Joko Supriyono, Chairman of the Indonesian Palm Oil Association, told foresthints.newson Monday(Mar 14) in Jakarta.

Joko went on to explain that the detailed study of IPOPs content is certain to provide some clarity, both for IPOP signatories and non-signatories alike, as well as for the palm oil association and smallholders.

"Of course we want to take a look at the results of the study, after which we will respond to them, said Joko, who is also a director of Astra Agro Lestari, a recent signatory to IPOP.

He pointed out that, in essence, palm oil industry players certainly need to support the measures taken by the Indonesian government, in particular with respect to the advancement of the palm oil sector.

Joko asserted that as part of the Indonesian private sector, both IPOP signatories as well as non-signatories have to abide by and comply with Indonesian laws and regulations.

"In any country, the private sector is expected to follow and comply with the laws and regulations of the country in question. Indonesian laws and regulations pertaining to the palm oil sector are no exception," Joko stressed.

The bulk of complaints regarding the implementation of IPOP have been made by Indonesian palm oil industry players, including IPOP signatories, to the relevant Indonesian ministries, in particular to the Coordinating Ministry for the Economy, the Ministry of the Environment and Forestry, and the Ministry of Agriculture.