EU market open to palm oil: ambassador

EU market open to palm oil: ambassador

Jakarta (ANTARA) - Ambassador of the European Union (EU) to Indonesia Vincent Guérend stated that the EU market, comprising 28 member states, is completely open to palm oil.

"We should not forget the big picture. The EU market (28 member states) is completely open to palm oil. There is no such thing as a ban on palm oil," Guérend noted in a statement received here on Friday.

This delegated European Commission regulation is neither the beginning nor the end of a policy process, rather it is just one more step on a long and collective journey towards sustainable development and carbon neutrality, Guérend remarked.

The EU is the second-largest market for Indonesian palm oil, after India but before China.

Most of Indonesia's palm oil enters the EU with zero or very low tariffs, specifically 22 percent at zero duty and 55 percent below 5.1 percent. The same cannot be said for other importing markets, Ambassador Guérend pointed out.

"As a defender of the rules-based order, we comply with the WTO rules and abide by its rulings," he noted.

In this regard, the EU views RED II and the delegated act as being WTO compatible since RED II establishes sustainability criteria for biofuels and biomass that are global, objective, and non-discriminatory, the ambassador stated.

These sustainability criteria do not single out any specific biofuel or feedstock.

The REDII sustainability criteria identify sustainable biofuels that are eligible for public support or accounted against the EU and national renewable energy targets.

They do not limit the market access of imported biofuels to the EU, Ambassador Guerend remarked.

He revealed that the EU is committed to implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals, both in its internal and external policies. This is joint endeavor for the EU, all EU member states, and Indonesia.

Our doors have always been open and will remain so for frank discussion and dialogue with the Indonesian government and other stakeholders on this issue, the ambassador stated.

"We also expect that the establishment of a joint working group between the EU and relevant ASEAN member states to address issues relating to palm oil will serve as another avenue for discussions," Ambassador Guerend remarked.