KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 16): The Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) has welcome the European Union’s (EU) Deforestation Regulation, aimed at stemming the importation of commodities including beef, cocoa, palm oil and soy into the EU market which may cause deforestation in producer countries.
The EU has published its Draft European Parliament Legislative Resolution on the proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence and amending Directive (EU) 2019/1937 (COM(2022)0071 - C9-0050/2022 - 2022/0051(COD)).
In a statement on Wednesday (Nov 16), MPOC however urged the EU Parliament to acknowledge national certification programmes like the Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil (MSPO) standards as an effective measure to meet the requirements of the regulation.
The council said the MSPO stands ready to meet the requirements of the Deforestation Regulation.
It said that in anticipation of a global demand for sustainable palm oil, the national standard for palm oil production, the MSPO was made mandatory by 2020.
MPOC said that to date, 96% of Malaysian palm oil production including industrial stakeholders, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and smallholders are certified by the MSPO.
It said this level of certification is more than adequate to meet the requirements of the EU’s Deforestation Regulation as Malaysian exports of palm oil to the union are covered under the MSPO as well as third-party voluntary schemes.
The council’s chief executive officer Wan Aishah Wan Hamid said the Malaysian government is firmly committed to the sustainability of palm oil production based on the country’s laws, governing its natural environment and the rights of all people in the industry.
“This removes the risk of companies that import Malaysian palm oil, from having to bear the liability of 'cause and harm' should infractions occur.
“Access to justice and remedies, in case of harm, is readily available through an intermediate step of filing a complaint through the MSPO’s Complaints and Grievances resource.
“Should the complaint be seen as having merit to warrant judiciary action, the full force of the Malaysian laws governing environmental and human rights can be brought to bear upon the case,” she said.