PUTRAJAYA – The Honorable Ms. Teresa Kok, Minister of Primary Industries, Malaysia and His Excellency Mr. Darmin Nasution, Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, Indonesia co-chaired the 5th Ministerial Meeting of the Council of Palm Oil Producing Countries (CPOPC) in Putrajaya, Malaysia.

The meeting addressed and agreed on the following:

1. Malaysia will assume CPOPC Chairmanship from 1 January 2019 for a period of two years. Minister Teresa Kok wishes to acknowledge and thank Coordinating Minister Darmin Nasution for his Chairmanship and leadership role;

2. CPOPC is keen to expand its membership base among the palm oil producing countries and welcomes Colombia as our newest member. Being the largest palm oil producer in the American continent, the accession of Colombia as a member strengthens CPOPC as a whole and provides a strategic alliance among palm oil producing countries in promoting the interests of palm oil in the global economy. Both Ministers emphasized that CPOPC will continue to expand its membership by inviting other key palm oil producing countries;

3. Smallholders play an important role in the palm oil industry since they account for a substantial portion of the global output. Poverty alleviation and social well-being of these smallholders are priority for palm oil producing countries. Both Ministers emphasized the need to increase productivity and income of the smallholders through further enhancement of Good Agricultural Practices and accelerated replanting programs;

4. Recognizing the need to encourage greater synergy between the palm oil Industries of the member countries, both Ministers endorsed the convening of the Business and Smallholders Forum in 2019;

5. Highlighted the need to consolidate and increase biodiesel mandatory programs in respective member countries, as well as to encourage the use of palm biodiesel to other prospective consumer countries;

6. Both Ministers expressed grave concerns regarding the significant anti palm oil campaign triggered through various NGOs and even regularly supported by legislative processes in some importing countries that discriminate palm oil. These actions are viewed as highly discriminatory against all palm oil producing countries. As palm oil producing countries, we will continue all efforts to strongly counter such anti palm oil campaigns;

7. As palm oil producing countries, we will address various challenges emerging from the European Union’s Renewable Energy Directive II (RED II). Of significant concern is the proposed controversial Indirect Land Use Change (ILUC) concept that would likely discriminate against palm oil in the EU market. On that note, both governments will not participate in the EU’s ILUC workshop;

8. CPOPC prescribed strongly to the UN SDGs Agenda 2030 and agreed in principle to adopt these SDGs as primary drivers to attain higher sustainability commitment within the palm oil industry. These efforts similarly underscore our commitment for balancing out economic and social progress with the environment.