MSPO certification progressing, aid for smallholders soon - Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia

MSPO certification progressing, aid for smallholders soon

KUALA LUMPUR: Implementation of the Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil (MSPO) certification is progressing, with more planted areas expected to be certified, before being made mandatory at end-2019.

Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong said next week, the government would announce an incentive to support smallholders to be MSPO-certified, and boost the certification scheme.

“At present, those receiving the MSPO certification are more among the estate players, compared to smallholders.

“Smallholders are reportedly worried about the cost.So, we are finalising the financial incentive to support them in being MSPO-certified,” he added.

He was speaking after launching commemorative coins in conjunction with the 100th Anniversary of the Malaysian palm oil industry, at Bank Negara Malaysia’s (BNM), Sasana Kijang, here today.

Also present at the launch was BNM Governor, Datuk Muhammad Ibrahim.

The MSPO certification is Malaysia’s very own national certification scheme forged in 2015, and currently, implementation is on a voluntary basis.

Mah said as of June 2017, only 4.2 per cent of the total palm planted hectare-area is MSPO-certified.

Of the 5.76 million total palm oil planted hectare, 6.7 per cent of the estate planted area is MSPO certified.Only 0.3 per cent of it is from smallholders.

The minister said the MSPO certification compliance will be made mandatory by 2019 to elevate the industry to global standards, in a move towards branding Malaysian palm oil as sustainably produced and safe.

“The MSPO will spur us forward. The players, including smallholders have to get their certification done before it is made mandatory in 2019.

Meanwhile, on the export performance of the “golden crop”, Mah said it rose 31 per cent to RM32.3 billion in the first five months of this year compared to RM24 billion in the same period of last year.

The minister said Malaysia’s palm oil exports for this year is set to hit the RM70 billion target, to better last year’s RM67.58 billion.

Mah also said the Malaysian Pepper Board (MPB) has come up with a proposal for a “safety net” on pricing in respect of farmers of the commodity in Sarawak.

‘The ministry is studying it. The pepper price has come down compared to six months ago. The MPB has proposed something similar to that for rubber, where, when the benchmark Standard Malaysian Rubber (SMR) drops below RM5.50 per kg, there is a safety net for producers,’ he added. – Bernama






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