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Indonesian Investors Mull Expansion of Oil Palm Plantation in Philippines

18 October 2013

PHILIPPINES - Seven members of the Indonesian investment team from two Indonesian government owned and controlled companies named PT Perkebunan Nusantara (PTPN) and Pertamina paid a visit to the Philippines for an investment mission particularly to expand Indonesia’s oil palm industry, utilizing idle lands in the hinterlands in order that they become productive.

According to PTPN Director for Planning and Development Memed Wiraminardja, the team has four purposes in coming to the province and these are "to get information and discuss with Philippines’ interested party and procedure of land acquisition for oil palm plantation; looking for prospective creation of the plantation, transport and communications, infrastructure, extension plantation, shape of the region, climate, etc.; knowing the administrative data such as administration demographic data, availability of labor, level of education of the population, public facilities, social amenities, religion and culture and; the peace and order situation, economic situation and the like."

According to Alma Argayoso, Philippine Attache to Jakata, Indonesia, this move of the Indonesian government is one of the products of President Benigno S. Aquino’s attendance to APEC summit when he offered the potential investment areas of the country in order to bring in investment for agriculture and tourism which mean benefit for people living in far flung areas.

“For all you know, Caraga Region is a very potential area of plantation all over the country having 384,000 hectares of land to offer. These two companies therefore is planning to acquire 30,000 hectares next year and 30,000 hectares thereafter for another 10 years. To date, Agusan del Sur has only 20,000 planted with oil palm,” Argayoso said.

Vice Governor Santiago Cane who welcomed the Indonesian team also expressed his delight of the investment plan, saying investment is the spark plug of development in the province.

“In fact, we in Agusan del Sur have legislated an Investment Code where I authored way back in 1998 during my first term as member of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan. We have done this because we are protective of the investments here in Agusan del Sur while protecting our environment. We are doing this in order to fully observe and implement the laws in order to maintain ecological balance and to align it to investment,” Vice Gov. Cane said.

The Indonesian investment team will be staying here until October 18 in order to actually visit the areas with the assistance of the local government officials.

TheCropSite News Desk

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