Indonesia Labels EU Palm Oil Resolution ‘Discriminative’ and ‘Protectionist’
by Daryl Worthington (Biofuels International) Indonesia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has denounced the European Parliament Resolution on Palm Oil and Deforestation of Rainforests, describing it as ‘discriminative’.
In addition, the ministry claims the EU decision was based on “inaccurate and unaccountable data”, accusing it of being a protectionist move contradicting the EU’s role as an advocate of open, free and fair trade.
Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) recently approved a resolution calling on the European Commission to phase out the use of vegetable oils for biofuels, ideally by 2020. The resolution also calls for a single certification system to be introduced for palm oil entering the EU market. The European Parliament voted 640 to 18 to approve the resolution, with 28 abstentions.
“The single certification scheme proposed by the European Parliament Resolution can potentially increase unnecessary barriers to trade and is counterproductive to efforts to increase the quality of palm oil sustainability.” Indonesia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in an 8 point statement issued in response to the EU’s resolution.
Palm oil’s role in deforestation is questioned by the statement. “Palm oil is not the main cause of deforestation. Based on studies by the European Commission in 2013, from a total of 239 ha of land which underwent deforestation globally in a 20 year period, 58 million ha was due to livestock grazing, 13 million ha to soy, 8 million ha to corn, and 6 million ha to palm oil. In other words, total global palm oil contributed to approximately 2.5% of total global deforestation.” READ MORE / MORE / MORE