Minister to accelerate replanting of smallholder oil palm plantations

Minister to accelerate replanting of smallholder oil palm plantations

Coordinating Minister for Economy Airlangga Hartarto speaks at the GAPKI National Conference, Wednesday (8/3/2023). (ANTARA/Sanya Dinda)

Jakarta (ANTARA) - Coordinating Minister for the Economy Airlangga Hartarto has vowed to accelerate the rejuvenation of smallholder palm oil plantations that had only reached 200 thousand hectares in 2022, from the targeted 540 thousand hectares.

To achieve this, the government is opening access to palm oil rejuvenation through a partnership scheme between planters and partner companies with several conditions, including the use of certified seeds, plantation management according to the ISPO criteria, and a commitment from the company to become an off-taker.

"Under these conditions, of course, we encourage the availability of seeds to be prepared properly and also to work with off-takers, so that the planters can encourage this replanting program, including making this program bankable," Hartarto noted in an official statement on Thursday.

Hartarto said that in 2022, 717 members of the Indonesian Palm Oil Association (Gapki) control 3.69 million hectares, or around 22 percent of the national palm oil area spread across 21 provinces.

Through the 11th Gapki National Conference held on Wednesday (Mar 8), he hopes that the new management of Gapki will make a real contribution to accelerating the achievement of the target of smallholder palm oil rejuvenation and Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO) certification.

"The government encourages all members of Gapki to be optimistic about the prospects for the national economy. We know that palm oil is one of the world's most popular vegetable oils, and the price is more affordable compared to other vegetable oils," he stated.

He said the government is committed to ensuring that Indonesian palm oil remains competitive in the export market as it has become a primary export commodity.

Palm oil plantations can directly employ 16 million workers, both those who work directly in plantations and indirectly.

"Palm oil companies are also able to increase the added value of their products and contribute significantly to non-oil and gas foreign exchange earnings in 2022 of 12.76 percent," he stated.

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