ICYMI: European Experts Comment on Deforestation Report

The Oil Palm would like to bring to your attention expert comments on Palm Oil that have recently appeared in the European media ahead of tomorrow’s vote on the Palm Oil & Deforestation Report in the European Parliament.

EurActiv: Opinion on the ‘Palm Oil and Deforestation’ report

By Pierre Bois d’Enghien

‘The report’s stated aim is to advance sustainable forest management, and sustainable agricultural production. However, the recommendations put forward do not advance these goals at all.

‘First, the environment. The Report claims that oil palm has caused 40 per cent of deforestation. The reference cited by the Parliament report does not even contain this statistic. The EU’s own official research on deforestation estimates only 2.5 per cent could be attributed to oil palm – far less than other commodities, including livestock, soybeans and maize. And not even close to the 40 per cent that is cited in the EP report.

‘Second, on poverty reduction. Oil palm is perfect for the tropical climate, easy to cultivate, and provides predictable, regular income. For millions of poor, rural farmers across Africa it has been a lifeline. That’s the good news.’

Read the full opinion editorial here: Opinion on the ‘Palm Oil and Deforestation’ report

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Affari Italiani: The Italian in Brussels, who can help the Global South

By Luca Bertoletti

‘The report attacks palm oil and has led to protests from governments around the world, including Colombia, Malaysia, Honduras and Indonesia. These countries have a few things in common: they are all in the Global South, and they all export palm oil as a means to increase their development and reduce poverty amongst their peoples. They have all asked the European Parliament to reject the report that attacks palm oil.

‘First, the report is factually wrong. It claims palm oil is responsible for 40 per cent of deforestation: Neither the U.N., nor any agency, accepts that figure.

‘Second, the solutions proposed are unrealistic. The report asks for taxes, tariffs and EU control of palm oil rules. All of these have been suggested in various EU countries before, by the populists. All these ideas have been rejected as being unworkable and unjustified. The M5S in Italy has called for bans and taxes that were rejected in Parliament. Each of these ideas would also be illegal under the World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules.

‘Third, the report is clearly negative for the national interest of Italy, and the wider interests of the European Union. Palm oil creates jobs, and provides tax revenues for Italy.’

Read the full opinion editorial here: The Italian in Brussels, who can help the Global South

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