Indonesia, the world’s largest producer of crude palm oil, plans to stop exporting the raw material over time and ship refined products.
“At some point we must stop crude palm oil exports, it must be in the form of cosmetics, margarine, biodiesel and other processed products,” said President Joko Widodo in a video uploaded to the official channel. The country must be bold in stopping shipments of raw materials, despite the risk of lawsuits at the World Trade Organization.
Southeast Asia’s largest economy has been looking to move up the commodity value chain, banning exports of raw copper and then nickel ores, while requiring miners to invest in local smelters. The European Union has tried to challenge export restrictions in the WTO.
Indonesia must prepare “world-class lawyers” before any legal action, Jokowi said.