Today, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (US CBP) issued a Notice of Finding against Sime Darby Plantation Berhad (SDP). The following statement can be attributed to Chairman of the Malaysian Palm Oil Council, YB Tuan Larry Sng Wei Shein:
“Forced labour has no place in the Malaysian palm oil supply chain. The Malaysian Palm Oil Council is committed to improving conditions for all our workers and to eradicating any such labour rights violations.
“MPOC is pursuing significant cross-industry efforts to achieve this goal. These efforts include commitments from Malaysian palm oil companies to no debt bondage or recruitment payments, and recommending independent social auditing of plantation operations ahead of the arrival of new migrant workers later in 2022.
“MPOC has recently commenced a constructive and respectful dialogue with the U.S. CBP and other U.S. government bodies, to demonstrate our commitment to this effort. However, the engagement process is opaque and requires greater transparency. We look forward to working with the U.S. Embassy in Kuala Lumpur and the relevant U.S. authorities in Washington, to continue this constructive dialogue and to cooperate towards our shared objective.”