Forestry Ministry rejects Wilmar Group’s Application to Release Land from Forest Status

July 2013, The Indonesian Forestry Ministry has announced its rejection of around eight companies’ applications to release forest land (see: Three of the companies are subsidiaries of Wilmar Group that are hoping to plant sugar cane: PT Anugerah Rejeki Nusantara (41,421 ha) in Merauke Regency, and PT Royal Agro Sejahtera (39,593 ha) and PT Surya Lestari Nusantara (39,544 ha), both in Mappi Regency.

PT Anugerah Rejeki Nusantara is a sugar cane company operating near the Kumbe river in Animha and Tanah Miring districts in Merauke Regency, which has actively been surveying the land around four villages: Baad, Wayau, Koa and Zanegi. In Zanegi, they even managed to persuade villagers to sign over 1000 hectares of land. However, the people who signed the letter, who are customary land rights holders, still have not read the document they signed and do not have a copy.

Other companies which were rejected are oil palm companies PT Agrinusa Persada Mulia (17,086 ha) and PT Agriprima Cipta Persada (21,155 ha), both of which are subsidiaries of PT Agro Mandiri Semesta (AMS) located in Muting and Elkobel districts, Merauke. Part of the area in Muting is already being used for an oil palm nursery.

Source: Pusaka

[awasMIFEE note: the companies are likely to reapply.]

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