InfoSAWIT, JAKARTA – In 2023, a study by TuK INDONESIA showed the worry in palm oil plantation industries in Indonesia. Data found by the organization revealed that 25 big corporates mastered totally 3,9 million hectares plantations in this country. Of the numbers, some have been mastered and cultivated by giant ones, such as, Sinar Mas (14%), Salim (8%), Jardine Matheson/Astra Agro (7%), Wilmar (6%), and Surya Dumai Grup (5%).
But the main focus of the study was not about big corporates’ domination. TuK INDONESIA also identified that some palm oil corporates that would get palm oil bleaching, might involve in the fire case in Central Kalimantan Province. This showed a paradox: bleaching that should actually be the way to escalate the country’s revenue, ends with the environmental crime sustainably.
What is more interesting is that financial service institutions that should actually play important roles to supervise and confirm ethical finance, also involved in the corporates financial scheme. Sinar Mas, for instance, was funded by big financial institution, including Banco de Sabadell and ABN AMRO; while Wilmar got fund from Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation. The financial institutions from neighborhood countries, such as Employees Provident Fund in Malaysia delivered fund for Genting Group.
It is important to note that the study also sue the credibility of RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil), which is taken as the standard in international scale in sustainable palm oil production. It was found that the companies involved in illegal activities are the members of RSPO. That is why RSPO is doubtful in its effectiveness and integrity.
Campaigner of TuK INDONESIA, Abdul Haris said that this issue is very crucial because bleaching is a form of crime that the country would do. Financial service institutions should notice and evaluate their fund to such companies which have been proven to develop palm oil in forest regions and even involved in environmental crimes (such as, the fire).
“The findings that the corporates developing (palm oil plantations) in forest regions are the members of RSPO. This reinforces our latest statement that it is true, RSPO is not credible one,” he said, as in the official statement to InfoSAWIT, recently. (T2)