FGV to appoint independent auditor for forced labour assessment in August

KUALA LUMPUR: FGV Holdings Bhd will soon appoint an independent auditor to conduct an assessment of its operations following the US Customs and Border Protection's (CBP) ban on the import of its palm oil products in September last year.

In a statement, the group said it is calling for proposals from prospective organisations and expects to finalise the appointment of the independent auditor in August, following which the assessment works will immediately begin.

On the advisement of the CBP, the assessment will be made against the 11 International Labour Organization (ILO) indicators of Forced Labour.

The group estimates that it will be able to submit the assessment report and proposed remediation plan to the CBP within eights months from the appointment of the auditor.

FGV is petitioning against the CBP's issuance of a Withhold Release Order on its palm oil and palm oil-related products following the US agency's identification of forced labour in its practices.

"The CBP informed FGV that it would consider a petition for the revocation of the WRO together with information or reports arising from audits from credible, unbiased, third-party auditing firms," said FGV in a March statement.

Reiterating its commitment to the sustainability and human rights agenda, the group said it has intensified its efforts with its affiliation to the Fair Labour Association and establishing a Foreign Workers Working Committee to focus on strengthening labour practices.

"FGV recognises that upholding labour standards is a continuous endeavour, and is committed to prioritising efforts to advance the sustainability and human rights agenda.

"The Company shall make further announcements if there is any material development in respect of this matter," it said.

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