ISPO dissemination to local governments and NGOs / CSOs commencing in series

MAY 30,2021

Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) had conducted series of ISPO dissemination during April - May 2021 facilitated by UNDP SPOI, a partnership program between the Ministry of Agriculture and UNDP Indonesia to support the achievement of Indonesian sustainable palm oil.

Since the issuance of MoA Regulation Nr 38/2020 as the implementing regulation for Presidential Regulation Nr 44/2020 regarding the Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil Certification System (ISPO), many changes need to be comprehended by palm oil stakeholders including local governments who maintain and supervise ISPO Certification in the sub-national level.

The amendment in regulation improved the certification scheme previously regulated in MoA Regulation Nr 19/2011 and 11/2015, by which in addition to the mandatory implementation of ISPO certification for plantation companies, ISPO certification will also become mandatory for smallholders within 5 years of the enactment of the Presidential Regulation.

Furthermore, there is no differentiation anymore in the principles and criteria between plasma and independent smallholders. Other than that, the certification decision making is now carried out by an independent certification body accredited by the National Accreditation Committee.

This dissemination complements the previous series of outreach conducted by DG of Estate Crops MoA for business actors. It is well-known that there are still some stakeholders, including local governments, plantation companies, smallholder associations, and NGOs /CSOs who have not received comprehensive information related to ISPO.

The ISPO dissemination series has been carried out nationally to accommodate the coverage of priority areas for national oil palm development. Four series of meetings were held to accommodate local government from 19 provinces and 1 additional series specifically planned for NGOs/CSOs.

The series of meetings that have been held online are as follows:

  • Regional 1 on 1 April 2021: Central Kalimantan, West Kalimantan, South Kalimantan, East Kalimantan, West Sulawesi, Central Sulawesi, South Sulawesi, Papua, West Papua (33 districts)
  • Regional 2 on 15 April 2021: covering the Aceh and North Sumatra (22 districts)
  • Regional 3 and 4 on 22 April 2021 covering West Sumatra, Riau, Jambi, South Sumatra, Babel, Bengkulu, Lampung (50 districts)

The ISPO dissemination to NGOs /CSOs is planned for June 2021.

In the dissemination, the issues raised were not only related to certification scheme within the scope of the agricultural policy but also other factors.

One of the factors was the policy for resolving the status of oil palm plantations indicated in forest areas, presented by representatives from the Ministry of Environment and Forestry. In addition, another issue raised in the series was the support from the Palm Oil Fund Management Agency (BPDPKS) to accelerate ISPO certification for smallholders.

In several discussions, some topics have emerged as challenges for the implementation of ISPO certification. The most prominent topic was the cultivation registration certificates (STD-B) for oil palm smallholders, as there were differences in understanding among local governments between those considering STD-B as a data collection tool and STD-B as a licensing tool.

To solve this problem, UNDP SPOI facilitated a separate meeting that specifically discussed efforts to accelerate the issuance of STD-B by inviting stakeholders from various elements, such as local governments, CSOs, and business actors.

In the near future, there is still an agenda to convene ISPO dissemination for NGOs/CSOs which give support to smallholders in various regions to increase their capacity in achieving ISPO certification. It is hoped that providing outreach to NGOs and CSOs, will further complement the understanding of ISPO to stakeholders and encourage multi-stakeholder collaboration in its achievements, especially by smallholders.