KUALA LUMPUR, January 26 – The Managing Director of the Malaysia Palm Oil Association (MPOA), Datuk Nageeb Wahab, said the attempt was only to protect European oilseeds.
Nageeb told Malay Mail in an interview that the hostile campaign and the alleged justification of the EU are not justified.
“We are more concerned about the reason why they ban palm oil. We believe it is a very unfair policy, ”he said.
“The reason they claim to ban palm oil is because of environmental issues like deforestation and the statement that we killed endangered animals like the orangutan. This is not true and has been exaggerated.
“They have a different agenda, so they need these reasons to smear palm oil,” he said, noting that such reasons are discriminatory.
This follows after the EU has restricted and banned palm oil biofuels by 2030 in the delegated regulation to supplement Directive 2018/2001 of the Renewable Energy Sources Directive II (or the delegated act) of the European Union based on allegations of this palm oil production that are too excessive Deforestation and loss of biodiversity.
Nageeb admitted that there were cases of deforestation and death of endangered animals, but emphasized that these were isolated cases and that they were overrated.
Heb said the issue is very political, as those with legitimate interests want to ensure that their own oilseeds such as rapeseed, sunflowers and soybeans are protected in Europe.
“In Europe, rapeseed and sunflower oils are very heavily subsidized, so this is very political and they need to be protected because if they open up to much cheaper palm oil, everyone will want to use our palm oil,” he said.
In the EU, development of agriculture, including subsidies, falls under the common agricultural policy, for which a total of EUR 58.82 billion (RM 264.69 billion) was spent.
According to statistics published by the European Commission, the main EU oilseeds are rapeseed, accounting for 59 percent of the production, followed by sunflower seeds and soybeans.
Nageeb said that criticism of palm oil will continue to change the angle at which it will discriminate against palm oil, and has successfully created the perception that palm oil production has had a negative impact on the environment and biodiversity.
“They had previously found that palm oil was very unhealthy, but we proved it wrong in this regard. Now it’s about environmental issues.
“This will never end because the goal post is constantly changing,” said Nageeb.
Nevertheless, he admitted that the discrimination against palm oil was also due to a lack of awareness of palm oil production.
Using an example of an incident in which schoolchildren from an international school in Klangtal had shown during a school performance that palm oil cultivation was related to deforestation and orangutan death, Nageeb said that this was not taught related to the condition of palm oil to be a popular good, not even your own country.
“We should have a school curriculum that teaches Malaysian goods, including palm oil.
“Many don’t know this, but palm oil is grown seven times as much per hectare compared to other vegetable oils and is also a widely used product that is used in many household items,” he said.
Nageeb also said that the “palm oil free campaign” that is carried out in supermarkets is ultimately cumbersome since any supermarket that wants to take such an initiative would have to deplete almost half of its inventory.