Oil palm plantation

A False Hope? An analysis of the new draft Indonesia Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO) regulations

Analysis by EIA and its Indonesian partner Kaoem Telapak reveals Indonesia is not set to fundamentally improve its palm oil standards.

The revision of the Indonesia Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO) certification scheme, ongoing since 2016, had been seen a key chance for the country to improve the sustainability of its palm oil sector and address the negative environmental and social impacts of the industry. Indonesia has 16.38 million hectares of oil palm plantations – the largest of any country in the world.

But analysis of the new draft ISPO standards and regulations show the proposed revisions do not make significant changes and do not incorporate inputs from civil society. The drafts fail to include human rights aspects, such as the right of indigenous peoples and local communities to Free, Prior and Informed Consent and clear protection of all natural forests.

Indonesia looks set to imminently pass these new yet still weak ISPO regulations into law and miss a significant opportunity to improve the sustainability and credibility of its palm oil. The Indonesian Government is called on to substantially improve the drafts and ensure a participatory and open approach.