A group of Indonesian  NGOs released today a report that brings to light the obscure structure of Asia Pulp & Paper (APP), one of the major paper producers in the world. This structure has been used by APP to deny its responsibility in a case of deforestation recently raised by Greenpeace, that led the organisation to stop the engagement with the company. 

APP has a past of massive deforestation and systematic violation of local communities rights. In 2013 APP committed to tope deforestation and to put remedy to its impacts. But social conflicts have still not been resolved, CO2 emissions from plantations on peat worsened, as well as the risk of forest fires, and even deforestation seems still ongoing.

The new report, “Removing the corporate mask”, is the result of a long and wide investigation. It reveals the whole  ownership and management structures of APP’s 33 declared pulpwood suppliers in Indonesia – which control 2.6 million hectares of HTI plantation concessions – and of two companies that APP has recently named as prospective suppliers. 

The structure is an intricate construction, including dozen of companies located in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Japan, The Netherlands etc. and often controlled via employees or former employees.

Without making clarity on APP ownership and control over dozens of plantation companies all over Indonesia, it is impossible to asses its eventual progress towards ending deforestation. Transparency matters.

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