9th Ministerial Meeting of CPOPC

  1. The Ministers responsible for the palm oil industry, the Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia, H.E. Mr. Airlangga Hartarto as the chair of CPOPC and Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities of Malaysia, H. E. Datuk Zuraida Kamaruddin co-chaired the 9th Ministerial Meeting of Council of Palm Oil Producing Countries (CPOPC) on Saturday, 4 December 2021 in Jakarta.
  2. The Ministerial Meeting was attended virtually by the Vice Minister for Agricultural Affairs of Colombia, H.E. Juan Gonzalo Botero Botero; Minister of Agriculture and Livestock of Papua New Guinea, Honorable Mr. John Simon, MP; Vice Minister of Agriculture and Livestock of Honduras, H.E. David Ernesto Wainwright; and H.E Mdm. Akua Sekyia Ahenkora, High Commissioner of Ghana to Malaysia in their capacities as observer countries.
  3. H.E. Mr. Airlangga Hartarto highlighted the resilience and crucial role of palm oil sector in supporting and accelerating economic recovery amidst the pandemic. In 2021, palm oil export value is expected to reach USD 29 billion, an increase of 155% compared to the previous year. To keep up with the positive momentum of realizing sustainable palm oil, Indonesia in the process of finalizing downstream palm oil supply chain certification. However, Minister Airlangga also noted the growing trend of discriminative policies against palm oil that will be detrimental to the development of the palm oil sector. As such, Minister Airlangga highlighted that it is crucial for CPOPC to maintain its pivotal role in supporting and safeguarding the collective interest of its members in palm oil sector.
  4. H.E. Zuraida expressed her concern regarding the anti-palm oil campaign sentiment which is being highlighted from time to time by various parties. While it is a known fact that the oil palm is a far more efficient crop compared to other oil producing crops, the propaganda against palm oil has taken a more serious turn and it is something CPOPC need to counter in a more effective manner. Debunking the myths surrounding palm oil in general has to be strategized by leveraging the technological advancements of today including in the cyber platform where news travel fast. Therefore, CPOPC needs to place more emphasis on easily digestible, bite-sized information in the form of narratives and graphics to change perceptions.
  5. H.E. Zuraida ended her closing remarks by emphasizing the council’s role concerning palm oil industry. She congratulated the council for successfully finalizing the amendment to the Charter of CPOPC. With the signing of the Charter by both founding members, she is hopeful the new Charter will facilitate the admission of new members as well as observer countries into the CPOPC fraternity in the near future. She further stresses on CPOPC’s role as a body that encourage engagements on the development of a sustainable palm oil industry globally. CPOPC is also tasked with the critical role in assisting millions of oil palm smallholders and stakeholders globally. These efforts will help ensure that the palm oil industry is fully committed towards sustainability and encapsulates the UN’s SDGs in line with global demands.
  6. In their opening remarks, the representatives of Colombia, Honduras, and Papua New Guinea emphasized the importance of working together under CPOPC to promote common interests, strengthen collaborative efforts, and defending the industry against persistent negative sentiments and allegations. Vice Minister David Wainwright of Honduras stressed that producing countries have to demand fairer treatment for sustainably produced palm oil. In the same vein, Minister of Agriculture and Livestock of Papua New Guinea, Mr. John Simon reiterated that the producers should have a united voice not only against trade impediments but also on sustainability issues and development challenges faced by countries, regions and the world. Vice Minister Juan Gonzalo Botero Botero of Colombia welcomed and supported the promotional campaigns, research and studies, and the global framework that governed the principle for the production of sustainable palm oil. The observer countries would their best to accelerate the ratification process of the Charter and the Protocol to Amend the CPOPC Charter as the final steps before being admitted as full members.
  7. Following the progress report by the Secretariat, the Ministers announced the winners of the Short Story Writing Competition on Smallholder’s Life. This was followed by launching of the winning stories book titled “Oil Palm Small Farmers: Our Stories, Our Lives, Our Future”. The book consists of 25 best stories selected from the 210 entries from 15 palm oil producing and cultivating countries. An e-book version will be available on the CPOPC website and published in Malay, Spanish, and French languages.
  8. The Secretary General of CPOPC briefed the meeting on the CPOPC activities since the last ministerial meeting in February 2021 including the market outlook. Some notable developments were the three studies as recommended by the CPOPC Scientific Committee, the six ongoing advocacy campaigns, the conclusion of important documents such as the Protocol to Amend the Charter, the Global Framework of Principles for Sustainable Palm Oil, the Policy and Strategy Direction, Rules of Procedure of SOM and Ministerial Meeting, and the webinar series as well as various publications of CPOPC.
  9. In the second session attended by member countries, the co-chairs adopted the above-mentioned documents that mark further milestones and stronger basis for the CPOPC to execute its Charter-mandated functions notably the Protocol to Amend the Charter of CPOPC. They are crucial for CPOPC to lay a better groundwork for the Council to be more adaptable in addressing foreseeable future such as the commitment to work together with relevant external parties to enable CPOPC to achieve its objectives and goals in a more effective way. The meeting was concluded by both ministries signing the Protocol to Amend the CPOPC Charter which officially mark the ratification process by both member countries.
  10. Malaysia and Indonesia reiterated their commitment to ensure the high and attractive price in 2022 through various measures and coordinated actions at CPOPC level. Some notable priority efforts in the near future includes expansion of CPOPC membership, acceptance of the Global Framework of Principles for Sustainable Palm Oil CPOPC Global Multistakeholder Forum. CPOPC with the cooperation from Indonesia during the Presidency of Indonesia in the G20, will also leverage to further promote CPOPC and sustainable palm oil.