While preparing to enforce a moratorium on forest-clearing, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said palm oil plantation firms could venture into deforested lands to expand their businesses.
The President made the statement during a meeting on Thursday with business leaders from the Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association (Gapki) to discuss issues surrounding the forest-clearing moratorium.
Gapki secretary-general Joko Supriono told The Jakarta Post after the meeting that Yudhyono said he did not abide by foreign countries asking palm oil companies not to touch Indonesian forests.
President Yudhoyono pledged to accommodate the interests of palm oil companies in order to allow them to expand their businesses during the moratorium period, Joko said.
“[Yudhoyono] doesn’t want [palm oil industries] to become victims of the moratorium since the sector has pro...