LETTER | The European Parliament voted in favour of a law on renewable energy that aims to reduce the contribution of palm oil in biofuels and bioliquids to zero. This poses a tremendous threat to Malaysia, which is the world's second largest producer of palm oil.
Environmentalists claim that the palm oil industry is destroying rainforests which is home to indigenous communities and threatened species like the orangutans.
The development of palm oil is also accused of contributing to climate change through forest-clearing fires as carbon dioxide is released to the atmosphere.
However, oil palm estates expansion in Malaysia in the last 50 years was mainly converted from former rubber and cocoa cultivation. No rainforest land has been used since 1990.
In 2017, global sales from palm oil exports totalled to US$33.3 billion. With EU being one of the main importers of palm oil, a ban on palm oil is regressive and will cause uncertainty in the global trade.
The implementation of this ban will negatively affect the EU's trade in Malaysia and the Southeast Asian region. Job opportunities, strategic interest in Southeast Asian countries and bilateral trade will be affected.
Presently, Europe's import of palm oil is worth up to US$7 billion; half of which is used as biodiesel. In Malaysia, the EU accounted for 12 percent of the palm oil exports in 2017 and is the biggest buyer after India. The Netherlands accounts for approximately half of Malaysia's exports to the EU.
European actions are gravely hurting the global economy. It is in the best interest of the world to reduce trade restrictions in a globalised economy.
The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.
Unrestrained power in your hands
For almost 20 years, Malaysiakini has stayed true to the cause of providing the Malaysian public with the truth. We believe that with unadulterated information, the people will obtain power to make informed decisions.
Decisions which lead to a healthy, robust nation - ours!
Keep the truth alive. Support your robust, independent media. You have the unrestrained power to do so.
Who says it's not our fault?
We aren’t trained to take responsibility.
Everytime we observe an injustice - and choose to keep mum - the prevalence of injustice becomes our fault.
Astute journalism paves the way for the public to be continuously furnished with the fastidious truth. You are continuously empowered to act and to uphold the integrity of the nation.
The Rakyat owns Malaysiakini
We choose to take a risk on independent media because we believe that only through independent reporting can one be NOT beholden to the interest of businesses or organisations. This allows us to really pursue the truth - aggressively.
Independent for 20 years.
The victorious people
In the light of holding the truth to power, Malaysiakini will continue to uphold its mission of providing credible news to its discerning public. Your support for Malaysiakini is always treasured as a testament of innate nationalism. Your victory is our history.
Quietly. Effectively. Says it all. Malaysiakini.
Speaking truth to power
When we embarked on this journey 20 years ago, we knew we would face intimidation, harassment, raids, arrests and perhaps even jail terms. We got into this venture with our eyes wide open.
The main reason we have survived this long - when many others have folded - is partly because we are prudent in our finances. But while we may be tightfisted in our budgeting, we do not hold back when it comes to speaking truth to power and holding power to account. And certainly, this new administration will not stop us from continuing to do so.