Kuala Lumpur (24 May 2018) – MPOC Chairman Dato’ Lee Yeow Chor today delivered a keynote address to the Alliance of Conservatives and Reformists in Europe (ACRE), describing how Malaysia is a global leader in both agricultural innovation and environmental protection.
The ACRE “Blue-Green” Summit in Brussels focused on how markets and industry can drive environmental solutions. Members of the EU Parliament and senior EU Commission officials participated in the Summit, as well as business leaders and academics from across Europe.
Dato’ Lee highlighted that the EU‘s proposed ban on palm oil biofuels undermines Malaysia’s successful focus on sustainability:
“The proposed EU ban on palm oil biofuels will have a negative impact on sustainability in both economic and environmental terms. It is also highly protectionist: EU-grown crops will be allowed but palm oil – the only oilseed crop grown primarily in the developing world – will be excluded. I urge everyone in this room to ask why the EU is doing this, when simply allowing market activity to determine which feedstocks are used is proven to be a better route.”
Datuk Franki Anthony Dass, Chief Value Officer at Sime Darby, explained the benefits of private property rights and how private industry drives sustainability in Malaysia:
“Giving of land to small farmers gives them incentive to protect the environment and their community. It gives them a stake in the future including providing education for future generations.
“Poverty is one of the greatest drivers of environmental destruction. Areas in Malaysia with successful oil palm sectors, including property rights and prosperity for small farmers, often also have the best environmental protection track-records.”