January 29, 2014
RAN Responds to Indonesian Pulp and Paper Giant's New Forest Policy
Asia Pacific Resources International Limited (APRIL), Indonesia's controversial, second-largest pulp and paper company, issues updated policy called insufficient by leading environmental organizations
On Tuesday, Indonesia's second largest pulp and paper company, Asia Pacific Resources International Limited (APRIL), announced an updated Sustainable Forest Management Policy. Controversies related to deforestation and human rights violations caused by the business practices of APRIL and its owner Sukanto Tanoto have surrounded the company for years. Both have been the target of campaigns by international environmental and human rights organizations including Rainforest Action Network (RAN), Greenpeace and WWF. APRIL has failed to meet its own sustainability targets repeatedly in the past and roughly 60 percent of its total fiber supply contineus to be sourced directly from rainforest fiber.
Rainforest Action Network Asia Director, Lafcadio Cortesi, issued the following statement.
"APRIL's new policy allows the company to continue to pulp rainforests for paper until 2020. It is a missed opportunity to put APRIL on a new path and raises as many questions as it answers. The policy is limited in the scope of forests it will protect as it fails to cover APRIL's broad array of sister companies and suppliers. It is also rife with major policy gaps, including the restoration and preservation of natural forests and it contains large loopholes on the critical issues of human rights, peatland development and high conservation value forests. Despite a positive commitment to set some areas aside from plantation development, this policy should send a clear signal to customers, investors and APRIL's colleagues in the World Business Council on Sustainable Development, that APRIL has yet to undertake a path to true reform. Pulp and paper customers must demand more before considering doing business with any of Sukanto Tanoto's vast network of companies that remain unaccountable for the consequences of their actions."