Louis Dreyfus quits Green Eagle Group, owner of PT Tandan Sawita Papua and PT Varia Mitra Andalan

Louis Dreyfus Commodities, a French multinational which is one of the big four agricultural trading companies worldwide, has withdrawn from the Green Eagle Group, its joint venture with the Rajawali Corporation. The company released a short statement on July 24th. Green Eagle Group controls two plantations in West Papua. PT Tandan Sawita Papua in Keerom near Jayapura which has been operational since 2008. PT Varia Mitra Andalan in South Sorong  is not yet operational, but is believed to hold the main permits needed to commence land clearing. The company gave no further details on its reasons for pulling out, and it is also not known how this development will affect Rajawali’s future plans.

Many local indigenous people in Keerom resent PT Tandan Sawita Papua for taking their land without bringing any positive benefits for their communities and employees have also been jailed in a move which was thought to be connected to demonstrations demanding a decent wage. No reports have been received concerning PT Varia Mitra Andalan’s relatationship with local people in South Sorong.

Here is a report from Reuters about the news:

Louis Dreyfus quits palm oil venture in Indonesia

Thu Jul 24, 2014 5:29pm (Reuters) – Global trader Louis Dreyfus Commodities has left a joint venture operating palm oil plantations in Indonesia after an investment review, the company said on Thursday.

Its Louis Dreyfus Commodities Asia Pte unit quit the Green Eagle Plantations Pte Ltd (GEP) venture, which Louis Dreyfus formed in 2011 with Indonesian conglomerate Rajawali Corp.

Louis Dreyfus said in 2012 the venture operated in four regions of Indonesia – West Kalimantan, East Kalimantan, South Kalimantan and Papua – overseeing 50,000 planted hectares, employing over 2,000 people and with 2011 production of nearly 100,000 tonnes of palm oil.

“Louis Dreyfus Commodities reviews its portfolio of investments periodically and, as part of that exercise, has decided to exit its investment in GEP,” the company said in a statement.

It did not provide further details and could not be reached immediately for further comment.

The family-controlled Louis Dreyfus group is the “D” of the so-called ABCD majors that dominate agricultural commodities, alongside Archer Daniels, Bunge and Cargill.

The group, which has said it aims to double sales by the end of 2018 compared with last year’s $63.6 billion, has highlighted Asia as an investment priority.

It operates throughout the food chain from farms to port terminals and processing plants.

Source: Reuters: in.reuters.com/article/2014/07/24/louisdreyfus-greeneagle-idINL6N0PZ3WT20140724

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