Statement in Response to Report by foresthints.news dated 1 February 2019

We refer to the online report published by www.foresthints.news on 1 February 2019 containing satellite imagery as evidence of land clearing activities by PT SAE, a subsidiary of Saraswanti Group. We were made aware of this report at 16.00h (Kuala Lumpur time). In light of the evidence and the alleged activities which are in contravention to our own supply chain and sustainability commitments, at 18.00h on the same day (Kuala Lumpur time) the management of Sime Darby Plantation (SDP) has decided to suspend with immediate effect any future dealing with PT SAE mill and the Saraswanti Group.
 
SDP would like to clarify that Saraswanti Group entered our supply chain since July 2018 via a few spot purchases of Crude Palm Oil (in total of 2500 mt) and palm kernel (in total 1,350 mt). We do not have a standing purchase contract with the company.
 
We will initiate further investigation into the matter and engage with the supplier to determine what, if any, restitution can be done to reverse their actions. We will also explore their willingness to join other responsible growers and commit to protecting orangutans by adopting and implementing a No-Deforestation policy through the recognized High Carbon Stock Approach, as well as to stop all development on peat.
 
We would like to thank Forest Hints for alerting us on the situation through the publication of their online report. We welcome such vigilance by other concerned stakeholders to highlight similar issues. This approach assists us in our fight to abolishing deforestation, protecting orangutans and preventing further emissions from peat development.
 
SDP will continue to review our own internal processes to further strengthen our due diligence and prevent sourcing of unsustainable palm oil within our supply chain. We will continue to uphold our NDPE commitments as reflected in our Responsible Agriculture Charter.
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