Forest Peoples Programme Supporting forest peoples’ rights

Responsible finance

The Responsible Finance Programme (RFP) aims to make public and private finance for development and the environment fully accountable to the public and affected communities. FPP advocates for rights-based approaches in development and emphasises that international finance agencies have a duty to ensure that the aid and investments that they support uphold the obligations of donor and recipient countries under international law.

Advocacy targets include the World Bank Group, the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) and Asian Development Bank alongside bilateral aid agencies such as the UK Department for International Development (DFID). The programme also carries out advocacy on the private sector with the aim of promoting respect for human rights and greater corporate accountability.

FPP’s advocacy activities seek to ensure that international financial institutions (IFIs) and development agencies adopt and fully comply with social and environmental policies that are in line with international standards, including human rights norms. RFP tracks the different safeguard policies of IFIs and pushes for upward harmonisation in standards and the establishment of mechanisms and incentives to promote effective implementation of safeguards.

Major efforts are also made to monitor IFI loan and grant operations affecting forests and forest-dependent communities. Where requested by local partners, FPP may also assist community appeals and complaints to IFI accountability mechanisms in order to help them secure redress and expose problems in IFI due diligence.

Relevant resources

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Hollow Promises: An FPIC assessment of Golden Veroleum and Golden Agri-Resource’s palm oil project in Liberia

Forest Peoples Programme

15 April, 2015

Hollow promises

Several years of fieldwork by the Forest Peoples Programme (FPP) and civil society partners in Liberia has revealed the extent to which palm oil company Golden Veroleum Liberia (GVL) and its lead investor Golden Agri-Resources (GAR) are continuing to operate without the free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) of local communities within their concession area, despite the companies’ claims to have learned from past mistakes.

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Conflict or Consent? The oil palm sector at a crossroads

FPP, Sawit Watch and TUK Indonesia

7 November, 2013

Conflict or consent? The oil palm sector at a crossroads

Click here to read related PRESS RELEASE.

Read this report in English or in Bahasa Indonesia

Growing global demand for palm oil is fuelling the large-scale expansion of oil palm plantations across Southeast Asia and Africa. Concerns about the environmental and social impacts of the conversion of vast tracts of land to monocrop plantations led in 2004 to the establishment of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), which encourages oil palm expansion in ways that do not destroy high conservation values or cause social conflict. Numerous international agencies have also called for reforms of national frameworks to secure communities’ rights and to develop sound land governance.

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Golden Agri-Resources (GAR) bond offering: Briefing to banks and potential investors on the ongoing risks and outstanding social conflicts in the palm oil agribusiness sector

15 April, 2015

Joint NGO statement

Credit Suisse, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC) and Mitsubishi UFJ Securities are acting for Golden Agri-Resources - part of the Sinar Mas Group - in a new bond offering worth up to USD 400 million, according to a Debtwire report last week.[i] The syndicate has begun meetings with credit investors this week in Hong Kong and Singapore.

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Golden Agri-Resources still in violation of RSPO standards

8 April, 2015

Golden Agri-Resources, which owns Indonesia’s largest palm oil conglomerate operating under the brand name Sinar Mas, is still in violation of RSPO standards, according to Forest Peoples Programme.

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PRESS RELEASE: Harmful Social and Environmental Impacts of Liberia Palm Oil Project Exposed

1 April, 2015

Golden Veroleum and Golden Agri-Resource’s palm oil operations in Liberia are compounding poverty and food insecurity by taking land without community consent and making hollow promises of development benefits, says new report

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New film highlights the struggle faced by the Panduamaan and Sipituhuta community in North Sumatra

30 March, 2015

'From our Ancestors' is a very powerful and moving story about the Panduamaan and Sipituhuta community in North Sumatra, Indonesia. They are fighting to stop the growth of pulp plantations owned by PT Toba Pulp Lestari. Previously formerly affiliated with pulp and paper giant, Asia Pacific Resources International Limited (APRIL) and its parent Royal Golden Eagle (RGE), and is still controlled by notorious Indonesian business tycoon Sukanto Tanoto through holding companies.

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African human rights body warns the World Bank on proposals to reverse decades of advancement in protection of indigenous peoples’ rights

12 March, 2015

LONDON, 12 March 2015: In February 2015, the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights met in Banjul, The Gambia, for its 17th Extra-Ordinary Session, to deal with critical matters pending since the cancellation and delay of previous sessions due to the spread of Ebola during 2014.

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Forest Peoples Programme complaint against Golden Agri Resources upheld

9 March, 2015

Palm oil conglomerate criticised for multiple violation of RSPO’s requirements that lands only be acquired from indigenous peoples and local communities with their free, prior and informed consent.

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World Bank Acknowledges Shortcomings in Resettlement Projects

6 March, 2015

This week internal World Bank review documents identified serious shortcomings in the implementation, oversight and management of its resettlement policies and practices.

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Indonesia: Asia Pulp and Paper security guards beat farmers’ union activist to death

2 March, 2015

In the afternoon of Friday 27th February seven security personnel contracted to guard one of Asia Pulp and Paper’s Acacia plantations in the district of Tebo, Jambi Province on the island of Sumatra, beat, then abducted and killed an activist from a local farmers’ union. According to preliminary reports, the altercation occurred when the guards tried to prevent Mr Indra Pelani from entering the plantation.

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