SOPPOA calls for national and state ministries, agencies to provide correct information of the palm oil industry of Malaysia
KUCHING: The Sarawak Oil Palm Plantation Owners Association (SOPPOA) fully support the Primary Industries Minister call for factual information on the palm oil industry of Malaysia to be disseminated to students. This came about following a stage show by some students which incorrectly depicts orang utan as being threatened by oil palm growers in the country. Foremost, orang utan habitats in Malaysia are fully protected by laws in both Sabah and Sarawak (only places where orang utans live); Sarawak sets aside six million hectares for Permanent Forest Reserves, one million hectares for Totally Protected Areas and 84,000 hectares specifically for orang utan conservation areas. It is the right of people to state their views but these should not contain lies and unfounded information especially against the palm oil industry of the country; as such it is only right that the government has taken the initiative to provide factual information on the palm oil industry to schools and for public consumption.
Another approach by the government to ensure that our lush green landscape will be protected is to limit the total area of oil palm to 6.5million hectares; this means that there will be no large expansion of oil palm in Malaysia. More importantly, Malaysian palm oil industry is to be fully certified under the MSPO (Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil) certification by December 2019 which means that Malaysian palm oil is sustainably produced and certified. Critics of the palm oil industry should make an effort to visit Malaysia and see for themselves the lush greenery all over the country and the natural habitats where wild orang utans roam freely with all the other living creatures of the forests.
The palm oil industry in Malaysia is an important economic sector, providing incomes to thousands of smallholders as well as over 600,000 people directly and indirectly employed in the industry and earn income for our country. For those who cared enough to find out the truths, including local based NGOs, they can easily get these facts from various ministries and agencies in Malaysia through their websites and to stop relying on hearsay by irresponsible NGOs. SOPPOA also calls for the education ministry to provide factual information on the palm oil industry of Malaysia to students throughout the country in collaboration with the Ministry of Primary Industries and related agencies so that Malaysian students will be knowledgeable of the palm oil industry of Malaysia.