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Created before Nov 2016
Last update: 2019-07-01 12:36:35 BankTrack
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Why this profile?
Royal Golden Eagle Group owns several companies (APRIL, Toba Pulp Lestari) which have severe adverse impacts on people and the environment due to deforestation and human rights violations.
About Royal Golden Eagle Group (RGE)
Royal Golden Eagle Group (RGE), previously known as Raja Garuda Mas, is a global resources-based manufacturing group with companies operating in the palm oil, pulp and paper, cellulose, gas and oil industries. The company was founded in 1973 in Singapore, by Sukanto Tanoto, who still chairs it. The company employs some 50,000 people and has assets of more than USD 15 billion.
80 Raffles Place, #50-01 UOB Plaza 1
Mr Sukanto Tanoto |
Founder and Chairman
The company is owned by its founder Sukanto Tanoto, listed by Forbes as one of Indonesia's richest businessmen.
RGE daughter company APRIL, the affiliated company Toba Pulp Lestari (which is also owned by Mr. Tanoto) and their suppliers, are having profound negative impacts on biodiversity and the climate. Many concessions supplying the mills owned by Mr. Tanoto are in areas representing some of the last refuges for the critically endangered Sumatran elephant and Sumatran tiger. Forest clearance of these areas pushes these species closer towards extinction. Drainage of deep peat soils both for natural forest clearance and for plantation establishment is an issue of global concern due to greenhouse gas emissions: a study released by the University of Helsinki, shows that APRIL's Acacia plantations on peatland in Sumatra release around 80 tons of carbon dioxide per hectare per year. Additional concerns include the continued subsidence of peatland areas, caused by drainage, leading to longer terms risks of flooding and inundation.
The paper mills run by APRIL and Toba Pulp have had serious impacts on local communities, as a result of forest concessions being granted for industrial exploitation without the free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) of the people with claims on the land and dependent on the forest resources for their livelihoods. This situation has led to significant social conflict and human rights violations. With the Constitutional Court ruling "MK 35" last year, there is also a material risk that areas in concessions allocated to APRIL, Toba Pulp Lestari and their suppliers and claimed by indigenous communities may be illegal.
In 2012, the founder and chairman of RGE, Sukanto Tanotom was involved in one of the biggest tax evasion cases in Indonesian history. RGE daughter company Asian Agri Group, one of Asia's largest palm oil producers, was found guilty of tax evasion. The company agreed to pay 2.5 trillion rupiah (S$ 250 million) in fines after the Attorney General's Office threatened to seize its assets.
Bracell (part of RGE) starts a major expansion project in the state of São Paulo
Bracell’s pulp mill in Lençóis Paulista (formerly Lwarcel) has also officially launched ‘Project Star’, an ambitious expansion effort to increase its current production capacity of 250,000 by an additional 1,250,000 per annum to reach 1.5m ton per annum. Work on the expansion has already begun, and is expected to be completed by the end of 2021. By the time of its completion, Project Star is expected to represent the largest private investment in the state of São Paulo in the last 20 years. Bracell also announced that Bahia Specialty Cellulose (BSC) in Camacari, Bahia, and Lwarcel Celulose in Lençóis Paulista, São Paulo, will now operate under the unified Bracell brand.
APRIL, RGE finally commit to zero deforestation
Indonesian paper company APRIl and its parent RGE group have joined the growing industry movement to tackle deforestation, with new policies that promise to end development on forest and forested peatlands (source: eco-business.com).