Malaysia to bring up palm oil issue with French minister

KLUANG: Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein will bring up the European Union’s (EU) resolutions on palm oil during a meeting with his French counterpart tomorrow.

Although the issue had little to do with the national defence industry, Hishammuddin said that the good relationship between Malaysia and France in both the defence industry as well as investment should be utilised to its maximum potential in order to get France’s clarification and stance on the issue.

“This is an agenda that people may think has nothing to do with defence, but if we are to invest on assets, to buy assets from France, we are going to use this to ask them to sincerely help us in other aspects as well ,” he told a press conference yesterday after officiating the ground-breaking ceremony for the fifth phase of the Sekolah Agama Kerajaan Johor Taman Sri Lambak and Paloh 2 project.

The minister said this when asked about his meeting with the newly appointed French Minister of Defence, Florence Parly.

The meeting is scheduled to be held at Wisma Pertahanan in Kuala Lumpur on Monday.

Earlier this month, the EU Parliament passed two resolutions to impose a single certified sustainable palm oil (CSPO) scheme for Europe-bound palm oil exports after 2020 and to phase out palm oil from the EU biofuel programme by 2020.

The move was based on claims that palm oil producers have failed to achieve United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), which include responsible consumption, production and climate action.

The Eurpoean bloc’s resolutions would threaten the livelihood of 650,000 smallholders and more than 3.2 million Malaysians who rely on the palm oil industry, according to the Malaysian Palm Oil Council. — Bernama

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