IOI Corp CEO takes pain to reassure investors on RSPO issues

PETALING JAYA: IOI Corporation Bhd views its suspension from the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certification as a serious matter but assured its stakeholders that the group has taken corrective steps to improve its sustainability practices.

Its group CEO Datuk Lee Yeow Chor in a statement yesterday said the non-compliance of certain RSPO principles and criteria, “is a very serious matter and has given rise to new challenges” for the group.

“We wish to assure all our stakeholders that after the complaint was made to the RSPO one year ago, we have taken corrective actions to review and enhance our sustainability practices.”

The steps taken, he said, includes rehabilitating affected areas, improving its firefighting capabilities and engaging consultants to advise on all relevant Indonesian laws and regulations, which are the subject matters of the complaint.

Lee noted some of the recent actions taken was to put in place a new sustainability team structure where the sustainability heads at all operating divisions have a reporting line to the group head of sustainability, who will report directly to the group CEO.

Lee added that IOI is also setting side equivalent lands within its development areas for conservation as a compensation measure for the affected High Conservation Values (HCV) area, and are also committed to conduct field trials and testing of the high carbon stocks (HCS+) in its new planting developments.

Lastly, he said, IOI is in the process of identifying and appointing an internationally reputable organisation as its implementation partner and sustainability consultant particularly for matters related to new developments.