French Palm Oil Tax Falls Foul of WTO

France recently introduced a tax specifically directed at palm oil. The new law proposes a tax that will hit palm oil that doesn’t meet ‘sustainability criteria’. There would be an initial tax of EUR90 per tonne on ‘unsustainable’ palm oil. ‘Sustainable’ palm oil would be exempt.

Palm oil producers have for the most part expressed opposition to the tax. Governments – particularly Indonesia’s – have been vocal, pointing out that … Read More

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Human Faces: Malaysian Small Farmers Reject Proposed French Tax

French MPs voted last week on an additional tax on palm oil. This tax will harm the lives and livelihoods of over 300,000 small farmers in Malaysia for whom oil palm cultivation is an essential lifeline.

Dato’ Haji Aliasak Haji Ambia, President of the National Association of Smallholders Malaysia (NASH) said:

“This tax is unfair, unjustified and discriminatory towards millions of small farmers worldwide. In Malaysia, today, more than one

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Malaysian Palm Oil Council Condemns Today’s Vote on French Palm Oil Tax

National Assembly Proposal Has No Intellectual or Economic Credibility

Kuala Lumpur – The Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) today condemns the vote in the French National Assembly that imposes a discriminatory tax on palm oil produced in the developing world. The tax has been passed in a vote of MPs in the National Assembly, despite having no economic or environmental credibility.

The tax was passed as part of the Biodiversity … Read More

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Growing Opposition to Discriminatory Palm Oil Tax

Opposition is growing to the proposed palm oil tax from within the French Parliament, in the French media, and by leading French economic and industry experts.

Food Navigator reports on the economic analysis commissioned by the Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC), which demonstrated that no economic basis existed for the proposed palm oil tax. The CEO of MPOC, Dr Yusof Basiron, was quoted in the article describing the proposed tax … Read More

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Malaysian Palm Oil Council: Proposed French Palm Oil Tax Discriminatory

Kuala Lumpur – The Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC), today, condemns efforts by the governing party of France, the Socialists, to impose a discriminatory tax on palm oil produced in the developing world. A new report (The Economic Facts About Palm Oil Taxation in France) commissioned by MPOC finds no economic rationale for the new tax, and in fact, finds it to be disproportionate and discriminatory.

The French … Read More

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Global Forest Watch’s Rubbery Plantation Numbers

Global Forest Watch recently issued a study and a blogpost on forest loss and plantations that was nothing less than surprising and at times bizarre. 

The study itself and its objectives seemed reasonably clear. The authors note that there is a lack of data on the location and extent of plantation areas within locales that are considered forest area, particularly because maps and imaging technology are generally unable to distinguish Read More

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Why are NGOs Shooting Down the UN FAO?

The recent FAO data that effectively said Malaysia’s deforestation rates had fallen to zero has ruffled feathers among campaigners.

Friends of the Orang Utans director Upreshpal Singh is content to ‘shoot the messenger’ when it comes to the new forest data, which was recently published in a piece that appeared in The Star.

The FAO goes through an extensive process of harmonization and cross-checking for its forest assessments. It … Read More

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The French Palm Oil Tax is a Bad Case of Déjà Vu

On January 21st, the French Senate passed an amendment approving a massive and discriminatory new tax on palm oil. The tax was passed as part of the French Government’s Biodiversity Bill.

For many who have followed the palm oil debate in France, this is sadly familiar. The same Green Senators, using the same discriminatory criteria, proposed the same palm oil tax in 2013, 2014, and 2015. The tax … Read More

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France’s New Foreign Minister: a Friend of Malaysia

The announcement that Jean-Marc Ayrault, an eminent former French Prime Minister, will be the Government’s new Foreign Minister, will surely be greeted as good news for Malaysian palm oil farmers and the wider sector.

In 2013, then-PM Ayrault travelled to Malaysia for a successful visit, including a keynote speech which included the promise that “palm oil will not be taxed” in France.

Mr Ayrault’s return to Government has come at … Read More

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The Partnership Between Smallholders and Large Companies

The UK think-tank Innovation Forum has published a thought-provoking piece on the significance of smallholders in the supply chains of major food companies, such as Nestle.

The article highlights the significance of smallholders on the supply side of the commodities market, implying that they have for the most part been forgotten by major companies, when examining their supply chains.

In the global palm oil market this is certainly the case. … Read More

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