The Palm Scribe

IPOC Focuses on How to Meet SDGs

IPOC 2018
Indonesian Palm Oil Conference (IPOC), an annual conference of the Indonesian Palm oil Producer Association (GAPKI) to kick off on October 31, 2018. This year theme is focusing on how the palm oil industry could contribute to the achievements of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The 14th Indonesian Palm Oil Conference  and 2019 Price Outlook to open at a posh convention center in Nusa Dua, Bali, according to the organizer’s official website “will be focusing on palm oil industry Development Contribution to Sustainable Development Goals, global market trends, and price outlook for the following year .”

”We want to show the world that the palm oil sector is one that has a substantial contribution to the attainment of SDGs,” said Mona Surya,  the IPOC 2018 Chairperson during a recent press conference in Jakarta to announce the event.

Over one thousand participants, from the various background, are expected to attend the two-day annual forum for the palm oil industry, the organizers said. The organizer of last year’s IPOC claimed the event, also held in Bali, to have been attended by around 2,500 people.

“We are very supportive of this theme, which is also in line with how RSPO strategize our support to the Sustainable Palm Oil Industry in Indonesia,” commented Tiur Rumondang who is  Indonesia Director of Operations for the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO).

Darmono Taniwiryono, who chairs the Indonesian Palm Oil Society (MPSI)  welcomed the choice of the theme for the conference, saying that it reflected that “the development of the palm oil industry supports many of the points agreed under the SDGs.”

Abetnego Tarigan, an environmentalist who is now  Senior Advisor at the President Executive Office, said that the conference should clearly identify which of the 17 SDGs, the palm oil could contribute to.

“There is a goal on forest protection, meanwhile palm oil contributes to forest conversion in Indonesia. As to this goal, it could, of course, invite criticism from many,” Tarigan commented.

Although yet to be confirmed, President Joko Widodo may open the forum with a keynote speech. Darmin Nasution, Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, is also slated to give a special address on strengthening ISPO, the Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil standards, in compliance with SDGs.

Minister of National Development Planning Bambang PS Brodjonegoro,  Minister of Trade Enggartiasto Lukita are also scheduled to address the conference on the first half of the opening day, talking about the challenges and opportunities of achieving SDGs in Indonesia and on Indonesia’s policy response to restriction on palm oil trade.

Two sessions are planned for the rest of the day, with the first one, regarding the palm oil industry contribution to SDGs, the second on trade policy, sustainability and SDGs. The sessions features many leading experts and officials, including Malaysia Palm Oil Association’s Mohamad Nageeb Ahmad Abdul Wahab, Indonesian academic Febrio Kacaribu, Michiko Miyamoto of the International Labour Organization (ILO),  Pietro Paganini, from John Cabot University Rome and  Dono Boestami, the head of the Indonesia Oil Palm Plantation Fund Management Agency.

Also featured as panelists in the sessions on the first day are European Union Head of delegation to Indonesia and Brunei Darusallam Vincent Guerend, Mahendra Siregar, the executive chairman of the Council of Palm Oil Producing Countries (CPOPC) and a number of senior Indonesian trade officials.

On the second day, Bambang from the  agriculture ministry’s directorate general of estate crops,  Musdhalifah Mahmud from the office of the Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Ron Hartman from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Chairman of the Indonesian Oil Palm Farmers (SPKS) Mansuetus Darto and Sanath Kumaran from the Malaysian Palm Oil Certification Council (MPOCC) will take part in a session on the perspective of stakeholders on sustainable palm oil development and SDGs.

The afternoon of the second and last day will be devoted to 2019 Palm and Lauric Oil Price Outlook, with experts such as Thomas Mielke, ISTA Mielke GmbH, Gapki Secretary General Togar Sitanggang, James Fry from LMC International Ltd, Rasheed Janmohammad from the Pakistan Edible Oil Refiners Association , Christ Rittgers from the US Foreign Agricultural services and Dorab Mystry from Godrej International Ltd. They will discuss  supplies, demand and price outlook, tariffs, emerging trend and changes in supply and demand driven by trade policy,

The outlook has become particularly important in view of the fact that palm oil prices have fallen down sharply this year.

“This event has become a benchmark for palm oil stakeholders in keeping themselves updated to the palm oil market trends and price outlook,” GAPKI said on its website, adding that the latest issues in the industry, as well as government regulations and policies, will be addressed in the conference this year.

The IPOC 2018 also features an exhibition on the latest development of technology, products, and services in the palm oil industry.

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