Wilmar co-founder Martua Sitorus resigns amid deforestation scandal

Wilmar co-founder Martua Sitorus resigns amid deforestation scandal

By: 
Samantha Chiew
04/07/18, 01:15 pm

SINGAPORE (July 4): Wilmar International’s co-founder, Martua Sitorus, has tendered his resignation a week following Greenpeace International's revelation of his links to Gama Plantation, a related palm oil business responsible for massive deforestation in Indonesia.

Gama is a palm oil business run by senior Wilmar executives and members of their family.

In addition, Sitorus’ brother-in-law, Hendri Saksti, who is the group’s country head for Indonesia has also resigned.

Wilmar in 2013 has committed to end its links to deforestation. But Greenpeace investigations revealed that Gama has deforested an area that came up to twice the size of Paris.

Responding to the news, Kiki Taufik, global head of Greenpeace’s Indonesia forests campaign, says, “This shows that Wilmar is determined to blame someone else for its failings. This is not just about Gama or Martua Sitorus. It’s about Wilmar’s refusal to do what it takes to keep forest destroyers out of its supply chain. If Wilmar is serious about reform, the first step is to prove its palm oil suppliers are clean by making them publish maps of all their concessions.”

Greenpeace is calling on brands and traders to suspend business with Wilmar until it has addressed the violations of its ‘no deforestation, no peat, no exploitation’ policy, starting by publishing concession maps for all producer groups within its supply chain.

Separately, RHB Research earlier today kept its “buy” call on Wilmar, highlighting that the ongoing market uncertainties and the recent retracement in share price as a good opportunity to accumulate the stock.

This also came despite concerns of trade tensions between US and China.

See: Ongoing market uncertainty makes it all the more opportune to 'buy' this stock

Shares in Wilmar are trading 3 cents lower at $3.04.

mm2 Asia conducts strategic review, exploring possibility of foreign listing

SINGAPORE (Sept 20): mm2 Asia, whose CEO Chang Long Jong is on The Edge Singapore's cover this week, has appointed Haitong International Securities to conduct a strategic review of the group’s businesses. Through the review process, mm2 aims to enhance its corporate profile, branding and market awareness in the North Asia markets where it currently operates. It also hopes to explore the possibility of seeking “a foreign listing of some of the group’s key assets and/or businesses, which may include the cinema operations, to further enhance shareholder value”. In its filing to t....
Read More >>

Alibaba's Jack Ma says can't meet promise to create 1 million US jobs

SAN FRANCISCO (Sept 20): Alibaba Chairman Jack Ma said the company can no longer meet its promise to create one million jobs in the United States due to US-China trade tensions, Chinese news agency Xinhua reported on Wednesday. Ma had met US President Donald Trump two years ago and laid out the Chinese e-commerce giant's plan to bring one million small US businesses onto its platform to sell to Chinese consumers over the next five years. "This commitment is based on friendly China-US cooperation and the rational and objective premise of bilateral trade," Ma told Xinhua. "The current situ....
Read More >>

Ascott REIT to build 324-unit coliving property at $62.4 mil one-north site

SINGAPORE (Sept 20): Ascott Residence Trust (Ascott REIT) has acquired a prime greenfield site at one-north for $62.4 million to build its first co-living property. To be named lyf one-north Singapore, the property will offer 324 units. It is slated to achieve Temporary Occupation Permit by 2020 and open in 2021. The site is located at Nepal Hill, where there is a thriving research and innovation community comprising 400 companies, 800 startups and 50,000 professionals. The 200-ha one-north estate has attracted over $7 billion worth of investments in critical growth sectors such as th....
Read More >>