Illegal oil palm farmers not allowed to sell their harvest, says Plantation Industries Minister

Datuk Dr Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali. - Filepic/The Star

KUALA LANGAT: Farmers who plant oil palm illegally on land that does not belong to them will not be allowed to sell their harvest, says Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Dr Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali.

Mohd Khairuddin said his ministry will not issue them the licence required to sell the harvested oil palm.

“Illegal farming of oil palm has been going on for a long time now, and these people do it on the sly by planting on government land.

“But when the oil palm matures and is ready for harvesting after about three years, they will need a licence to sell and hence will face problems as we do not issue licences to farms that do not have ownership titles,’’ Dr Mohd Khairuddin told reporters at the Malaysian Timber Council (MTC) Industrial Vaccination Centre (PPVIN) in Olak Lempit, Banting near here.

The minister, who visited the centre with his deputy Datuk Seri Dr Wee Jeck Seng on Tuesday (Aug 3), was responding to a question regarding the alleged illegal oil palm "plantation" at the South Kuala Langat Forest Reserve area.

Some 10,000 workers, mostly foreigners, are expected to be inoculated under the Vaccination Programme for the Agri-Commodity Sector by Sept 18.

According to Dr Mohd Khairuddin, initially the plan was to vaccinate about 8,000 people from the industry, but requests were received from about 10,000 workers.

He added employers would only need to pay RM70 in administrative costs per worker, whilst the cost of the Sinovac jab is borne by the government.

On another matter, Dr Mohd Khairuddin said the timber industry had lost many contracts as well as market positioning in recent months due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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