COWI: Noting the Political Sensitivities

In our series of blogs on the COWI report assessing proposals to reduce deforestation, a clear underlying theme has been how the report ignores the political sensitivities that drive European policymaking. These politics are inextricably linked with how commodities are treated in Europe. In short, commodities from the developing world suffer and those from the rich world prosper under EU regulation. This has uncomfortable echoes of past colonial policies, designed Read More

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COWI’s Focus on Technical Assistance

The COWI report puts an emphasis on providing technical assistance to smallholders and farmers in developing countries in order to improve sustainability efforts and, where possible, reduce levels of deforestation and degradation.  This is arguably the strongest recommendation put forward by COWI.  But what should this kind of technical assistance actually look like?

There are several parts to this question.

The first is who should be paying for this from … Read More

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The Risks of (dis)information Campaigns

The European Commission recently proposed a number of policy measures aimed at tackling deforestation in developing countries. The EC commissioned a European consultancy, COWI, to assess the feasibility and effectiveness of these policies. One such policy was the idea of ‘awareness campaigns’. COWI considered this to be a feasible, low-risk strategy. In fact, the opposite is true.  These are simply disinformation campaigns funded by Europeans taxpayers for the benefit of … Read More

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Facts vs the European Parliament: COWI experts rebuke MEPs’ attacks on Palm Oil

In our ongoing look at the recent Report by COWI on deforestation proposals – a Report requested and funded by the EU Commission – we now look at how the Report uses data to analyse the default EU orthodoxy on Palm Oil – specifically the April MEP Resolution on Palm Oil & Deforestation.

The European Parliament’s Resolution raised the ire of the world’s Palm Oil exporting nations, mostly because the … Read More

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ICYMI: Malaysia Condemns European Parliament’s Latest Vote to Ban Palm Oil Biofuels

Malaysia will take every necessary action to protect Palm Oil sector and small farmers

Following the vote in the ITRE Committee of the European Parliament, which moves Europe one step closer to banning Palm Oil biofuels, Malaysian Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities, Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong, issued a strongly worded statement stressing the Malaysian Government will take every necessary action required to protect the rights of Malaysia, the … Read More

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