General Assembly 9 of RSPO: Would it strengthen social dimension in RSPO?
The General Assembly 9 (GA9)of Roundtable Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) was held in November 1st, 2012. It wasstarted with confirmation of the minutes of the last GA8 held on 8 March 2012, which was led by the RSPOPresident, Jan Kees Vis. Aftergoing through 36 pages, there was no objection, nor clarification for the minutes. The GA9 then continued to receive and adopt the report andaudited accounts of the RSPO Treasurer, which was reported by TimStephenson. The 204 members are in favor of the financial reports, and 1 memberabstaint.The report was then accepted.
On this GA9, there are 3 resolutions submitted by several members.Resolution 6bis proposed amandments to Article 6.1 of the RSPO by-laws and Article 9 of the RSPO Statutes regarding the composition of the Executive Board, which was submittedby MPOA and Indonesian Growers.The changes proposed are 1) Increasein EB Members from the current 16 to 22. 2) Increase in representation for the Rest of The World Growers from1 to 4 (i.e Africa, Latin America, Thailand, and Rest of the world), 3) increase in representation for smallholders’ from 1 to 4 (i.e Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, and Rest of The World).This resolution got voteswhich areFor 77, Against 127, Spoilt 0.
Resolution 6c issubmitted by MPOA, NBPOL, INA Growers’ caucus as co-signatory representing INA Growers including Musim Mas, Agro Indomas, Bakrie Sumatera Plantations, Bumitama and Minamas (Sime Darby Group). The changes proposed are that the 9th RSPO GA provides the mandate to the RSPO Executive Board to take immediate concrete steps to amend the RSPO code of conduct and the annual communications of Progress or implment other mechanisms as deemed necessary as a priority, to addess the current CSPO low demand/slow uptake situation by GA10 in order to ensure the conituned credibilityand sustainability of the RSPO.Having votes for 158,Against 42, Spoilt 2, This resolution was then adopted.
Last resolution is the only resolution which addressed soial issues.Resolution 6d is submitted by Agropalma, Carrefour, GEC, NBPOL, Olam International Limited, Oxfam, Platinum Nanochem Sdn Bhd, Sawit Watch, Shell, Solidaridad, Zoological Society of London (ZSL).The resolution recongizes that the revised P&C have not been finalized. However, the resolutionsuggest the EB to considers at least Criterion 1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 4.1, 5.6, 6.3, 6.5, 6.6, 6.8, and 6.9. These proposalsgot most questions when it was presented. As Sawit Watch sees these proposals pretty much burden the growers and supply chains. Sandra (Oxfam) explained that these proposals was not capable to be delivered by the NGOs in theP&C Review.Having votes for 101, Against 100, Spoilt3, This resolution was then adopted.
In addition, the GA9 continued with Executive Board Elections. As Sawit Watch is retiring and not available for elections,whichis no more candidate, the GA9 leave the decision for representationof NGOs to the NGOs themselves. The representative of the NGOs in the executive board will then be announced on the GA10.In consequence, there are no representative of Social NGO in the EB at the moment. However Sawit Watch believes that social NGOs are still able to strengthen the social dimensions of RSPO by joining actively in working groups and task force.
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