Indonesia: controversial pulp and paper giant APP comes under scrutiny as it plans expansion but makes new promises

Indonesia: controversial pulp and paper giant APP comes under scrutiny as it plans expansion but makes new promises

Asia Pulp and Paper (APP) is coming under intensifying scrutiny over its renewed promises to bring its giant mills and supply chains into compliance with best practice norms for sustainability and its new promises that it will respect the rights of local communities and indigenous peoples. Recently, Marcus Colchester, as Co-Chair of the High Conservation Values Resource Network and Director of FPP, and Patrick Anderson, FPP's Policy Advisor in Indonesia, met with APP's Head of Sustainability, Aida Greenbury, and her team of advisers and consultants, to clarify the company's commitments. APP's new promises - to respect human rights, resolve land conflicts and respect communities' rights to give or withhold their free, prior and informed consent to operations on their lands - do provide a new basis for dialogue and engagement with the company, but given APP's past record most observers insist that proof must come from actions not words. In the interests of full transparency, we provide some relevant updates and briefs below: