Malaysia is Considering Stopping Palm Oil Exports to the EU
Malaysia, the world’s second-largest palm oil producer, is considering stopping exports to the European Union. The country thus responds to the new deforestation regulation of the country bloc.
That said, Deputy Prime Minister Fadillah Yusof, who is also the Malaysian Minister of Plantation and Raw Materials, during a press conference.
In December, negotiators from the European Parliament and EU member states agreed on a new law to ban importing products that contribute to deforestation. In addition to palm oil, this also concerns other products such as cocoa, coffee, soy, wood, beef and rubber, as well as derivative products such as leather, chocolate, furniture, paper and charcoal.
Companies wishing to sell their products in the EU must declare that their ingredients do not contribute to forest destruction. Otherwise, they have to fear high fines. The entire parliament and the EU member states still need to approve the regulation before it can enter into force formally. Traders then have 18 months to implement the rules.
According to the Malaysian deputy prime minister, the country will discuss with Indonesia, the largest producer and exporter of palm oil, the possibility of stopping exports to the EU. “We would have a stronger voice if we could join forces with Indonesia,” said Yusof, who will visit Indonesia this month.
Palm oil is used in countless products, including soap, food and fuel. Indonesia and Malaysia together account for more than 80 percent of the global supply. However, other palm oil producers have also warned that millions of smallholder farmers in South East Asia, Latin America and Africa are at risk of being cut off from the European market because they lack the resources to meet the stricter requirements.