Indonesian government set the reference price of crude palm oil (CPO) products for export duties at US$1,036.22 a metric tones of CPO - Photo by MPOC Office

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) — Indonesia to establish palm oil one map, to harmonize land data and to respond public criticism. The map is expected to be completed in August, said government official last week.

This action’ also taken as an effort to fight negative campaign on palm oil by European Union (EU). Recently, there are differences on national palm oil data between government institutions, even non-government organization, caused by differences in methodology and data collection techniques. The government is now trying to verify the land amount by using the same method.

“All that is to consolidate with the same method, technique, information, so it will definitely has the same data,” said Minister of Agrarian and Spatial Planning Sofyan Djalil after coordinating meeting on Friday (05/10).

Recently, Ministry of Living Environment and Forestry stated that Indonesia holds 15.4 million hectares palm oil plantation. Meanwhile, Ministry of Forestry said it’s lower at 14.31 million hectares.

A meeting led by Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs (CMEA) Darmin Nasution decided that Indonesia’ National Aeronautics and Space Institute, Geospatial Information Agency, Ministry of Forestry, and Ministry of Agrarian and Spatial Planning will consolidate the data with one reference that has been agreed by all.

The Government considered that equation of the methodology for calculating oil palm plantation areas is important to address EU discrimination against Indonesian palm oil products. In particular, regarding deforestation or deforestation due to oil palm land. Especially because EU accused palm oil as one of the causes of mass deforestation.

One palm oil data in the entire country is also expected to trace more accurate and transparent palm oil products from downstream to upstream. Its expected, Indonesian palm oil products can be accepted abroad and proven planted by principles of sustainability.

Indonesian government has been strongly opposing EU Commission‘ decision to adopt the Draft Delegated Regulation, by labelled the regulation as an outright discrimination and a disguised protectionist measure against palm oil.

Moreover, Indonesia considers that EU classification on palm oil as unsustainable high-risk indirect land use change vegetable oil is based on a unilateral and arbitrary scientifically flawed standard.

As a rejection of EU restriction, Indonesia is also planning to submit a formal protest with World Trade Organization. Moreover, it threatened to ban imports of some goods from the EU as a retaliation. Previously, Indonesia’ Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs Luhut Pandjaitan had hinted that jets manufactured by European companies could be among the targets, considering that Indonesia may need about 2,500 aircraft in the next two decades.

The EU’ palm oil restriction is feared to harm Indonesian economy, as almost 20 million people in Indonesia are dependent on the commodity. This situation also created a tension in Malaysia, as both countries hold 85 percent of palm oil global supply.

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