Learning from Women Leadership in Sustainable Palm Oil

DECEMBER 15,2020


Jakarta - SPOI UNDP in collaboration with the secretariat team of Lingkar Temu Kabupaten Lestari (LTKL) team held a public webinar with the theme ‘Women’s Strategic Role in Sustainable Oil Palm Development' on December 4, 2020. This webinar was held as part of SPOI UNDP contribution to the 16 Days of Anti Violence Against Women (HAKTP) campaign.

The webinar was started by opening remarks from Sophie Kemkhadze, Deputy Resident Representative of UNDP Indonesia who emphasized that her organization would continue to promote gender mainstreaming agenda to line ministries, development institutions and organizations in Indonesia. One of which is in the sustainable palm oil sector which currently has many women holding some strategic position.

Other opening remarks were provided by Muhammad Ihsan, Assistant Deputy for Gender Equality Policy Formulation, Ministry of Women's Empowerment and Child Protection (KPPPA). KPPPA acknowledges that palm oil is indeed a favorite commodity. However, there are still many unresolved issues regarding the rights of women workers on palm oil estates. To overcome this problem, he suggested that at least the stakeholders must ensure the protection of women and children’s rights; as well as providing opportunities to increase capacity and be actively involved in economic and social groups.

This webinar presented several women panelists from different backgrounds such as bureaucrat, practitioner, and activist, namely:

  • Musdhalifah Machmud. Deputy for Food and Agribusiness Coordination, Coordinating Ministry for Economic Affairs;
  • Yuslinda, Head of BAPPEDA, West Kalimantan Province;
  • Nursani Mona Surya. General Treasurer, Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association (GAPKI);
  • Nurbaya Zulhakim. Director of Setara Jambi;
  • Desi Kusumadewi. Head of Sustainability, IFFCO Group.

The panelists shared their respective roles, including when working with multi-stakeholders on strategic policy issues at the national and provincial levels, palm oil estates management, and economic empowerment of people who depend on palm oil commodities in the sub-national setting.

One of the important messages conveyed by the panelists was that gender mainstreaming programs in the palm oil sector have become one of the target milestones for the implementation of the National Action Plan for Sustainable Palm Oil (RAN-KSB). Currently, a guideline for the formation of regional implementation teams and the preparation of gender-responsive regional action plans are being prepared in collaboration with many stakeholders, including KPPPA.

The webinar which was held through the Zoom Meeting and broadcasted live through the UNDP SPOI Youtube Channel received a positive response from participants who came from various backgrounds. The messages and hopes that were most conveyed during one of the brainstorming sessions were how women can contribute more in supporting the palm oil business process and how women can play a decision making role in the Indonesian palm oil sector.