JAKARTA – The Indonesian government should prepare a roadmap on how to respond to the European Union’s (EU) discriminatory policy against the palm oil, an economist said last week.
Bustanul Arifin, an economist of the Institute for Development of Economics and Finance (Indef), said that Indonesia needs to prepare retaliatory steps against the imported products from EU that could be implemented if necessary. “Indonesia should find out the potential substitutes to the imported products from other countries,” he said.
According to him, there are 10 steps that can be implemented by Indonesia in countering the EU’s unfair policy against the palm oil commodity.
First, Indonesia should further strengthen its system of Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO) so that it becomes more credible and globally acceptable.
Second, Indonesia should promote more actively the steps it has already taken in ensuring the sustainability through the policies of moratorium, national action plans of the Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil Forum (FOKSBI), ISPO and the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO).
“Third, Indonesia needs to strengthen its diplomacy through ASEAN and the EU. It is particularly concerned with the sustainable development goals (SDGs) which have been agreed during recent ministerial meeting of ASEAN – EU. The SDGs had been adopted as a parameter of sustainability for all vegetable oils. The environmental impacts should be considered more comprehensively and holistically and should not be limited to only deforestation issue,” he said.
Fourth, Indonesia should intensify the positive campaigns on palm oil through Indonesian embassies in EU, Indonesian students abroad, and Indonesian diaspora in Europe.
Fifth, Indonesia prepares retaliatory steps against the imported products from EU if necessary, and finds out their substitutes from other countries.
Sixth, the need to increase research collaborations with foreign scientists and experts that will increase the capacity of Indonesia in countering the negative campaigns against the palm oil.
Seventh, the need to seek for new markets of the palm oil products at home and abroad besides the European Union.
Eighth, preparing anticipative steps to deal with the impacts of EU’s environmental policies against Indonesian workers and families.
Ninth, increasing the development of palm oil off-farm side for domestic and export markets with a view to raising the added value in the domestic palm oil sector.
Tenth, persuading the EU to base its environment policies on prevailing international laws and should not take any discriminative policies on environment. (*)
Source: sindonews.com | Featured image via orrisa-international.com