Civil Rights 2a is here.
The following oligarchs have controversial track records in managing their palm oil holdings, and have also established education institutes named after their conglomerates and, in the case of one, himself.
*The aim of training ‘leaders’ is stated in the ‘brochure’ website of each of their educational institutes. In other words, they are inculcating their own personal values – which put vast profits before the rakyat not on their gravy trains.
Established by Eka Tipta Widjaja, the palm oil sector of the Sinar Mas conglomerate is under the umbrella of Golden Agri-Resources (GA-R), which is headquartered in Singapore. It has the largest area of palm oil plantations in Indonesia under the sub-umbrella of PT Smart Tbk. which is listed on Jakarta’s Bursa Efek (Stock Exchange). Although publicly committed to a zero deforestation policy, GA-R has a chequered history.
Another company founded by Eka Tipta Wijaya is Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) which as a result of the 1997 Asian financial crisis (krismon) defaulted on more than $10 billion of deb. Since then, the company has been at the center of many environmental controversies and has been accused of being involved in illegal logging in Cambodia, China, and Indonesia.
– In June 2012, APP published a sustainability roadmap representing its zero deforestation commitments: but APP is still continuously monitored by international environmental NGOs.
– In 2013 it was reported (p.13. WWF report) that Sinar Mas had a processing mill in what was the forest around the protected Tessa Nila forest complex in Riau. Also (p.4 ibid) APP had a plywood factory. With the increased economic value of the two commodities, illegal palm oil plantations encroached in the protected area.
Sinar Mas World Academy
Vision: “To shape the future as a dynamic learning community that embraces Asia and engages globally.”
“A sound mind, a sound body …”
So those with physical and/or mental handicaps are not acceptable?
“… ability of life-long learning …”
If you’re not learning, you’re already dead.
“… an optimistic attitude towards life and a strong sense of social responsibility.”
Open to interpretation and/or indoctrination.
– We will engage with our learning community.
– We will act as members of our learning community.
Two statements with basically the same meaning.
– We will thrive as leaders.*
Budi and Michael Hartono have been the richest oligarchs in Indonesia for several years, Their Djarum Group has expanded from tobacco into palm oil via PT Hartono Plantations Indonesia (HPI), “which presides over tens of thousands of hectares in Kalimantan” but doesn’t seem to have a company website. The link suggests that through seven companies, mainly in West Kalimantan, HPI’s palm oil holdings at the end of 2013 totalled 85,225 hectares (Roughly 859 square kilometres/330 square miles = 25% larger than Jakarta.)
HPI does not appear to be a member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) which, since 2004, “has been transforming the palm oil industry in collaboration with the global supply chain, to put it on a sustainable path.”
Getting more information about Djarum Group’s palm oil activities depends on the websites of sub-contracted companies, such as elma which offers “trustworthy natural services services“.
Such as …
“Djarum is committed to realizing Indonesia’s potential to become a well-rounded world citizen through the Djarum Foundation operates a number of programs in selected fields that have been chosen for their potential to make a positive difference to society. Specifically, Djarum Foundation promotes excellence through community, sport, environmental conservation, educational and cultural expression programs.”
Maybe it’s the cynic in me, but the feel good factor built into all these programmes ensures that the Djarum tobacco brands remain in the mind’s eye for all those susceptible to their addictive products. One would think that their Sports Initiative would be counter-productive. But no: “since 1969 Djarum has actively supported badminton, arguably Indonesia’s best sport. Furthermore, since 1992, nine PB Djarum athletes have scored Olympic medals for the nation, a record to be proud of.”
[Note: just 30 Olympic medals have been win by Indonesians.]
Their Environmental Initiatives are well co-ordinated and, it could be said, essential. Their co-ordinated corporate T-shirts worn by volunteers (or staff?) aren’t..
Since 1984, through Djarum Scholarship Plus, the foundation has given “both financial support and soft skills training to good graduates with bachelor degrees, honing recipients’ abilities and skills to become intellectual leaders. As such, it is hoped that recipients can widen their horizons and develop the emotional and intellectual skills necessary to build Indonesia into a strong country capable of rising to future challenges.“.
[Click for the full-sized image of a carefully posed Djarum ‘Leadership Development’ session.]
Putera Sampoerna gained his wealth as heir to the Sampoerna cigarette company (PT HM Sampoerna Tbk.) which he led from 1978 until 2000, when he was replaced by his son Michael. In 2005 he sold 97% of his family’s shares, and thus the company itself, to Philip Morris International which in the past had been charged with money laundering and racketeering.
After the sale, Putera and his family founded investment company Sampoerna Strategic which has businesses in the telecommunications, agriculture, forestry, and the micro-finance industry.
PT Sampoerna Agro TBK (SGRO) is their palm oil business.
As of September 2016 SGRO had 137,995 hectares of land. The company says it is committed to create a harmonious and balanced business practice through the triple bottom line concept (3P – People, Planet, Product) … which … serve as a foundation and belief that welfare creation is the peak of a sustainable business performance.
SGRO does not have a No Deforestation, No Peat, No Exploitation (NDPE) policy with its CPO buyers: Golden Agri-Resources, Louis Dreyfous, Wahana Citra Nabati.
It claims to preserve High Conservation Value areas, yet the company does not make known the amount of preserved hectares.
In August 2016 the company was ordered to pay $76 million over fires that burned across one of its concessions in Riau province in 2014.
Putera Sampoerna Foundation
I wrote at some length three years ago about the PSF, and my posts remain high in the ‘top posts’ list in the right side bar. Read Putera Sampoerna – Saint or Sinner? online here or download a pdf file.
Sampoerna Strategic HQ, Jakarta