The Indonesian government has requested permission to build palm oil jet fuels plants in the EU and the USA in return for purchasing Boeing and Airbus planes for its airlines.

The condition, set by Indonesian Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita, was the latest way in which Indonesia – the world’s largest palm oil producer – was trying to increase the exports of palm oil increasingly shunned by the EU and the USA, wrote Reuters on 21 August.

Indonesia was facing pressure to limit the destruction of rainforest, particularly high carbon stock peatland, to make room for its oil palm and mining industries.

The EU announced in June 2018 that it would remove palm oil-based biofuels from its list of approved sustainable biofuels by 2030 and the USA in April imposed a 341% antidumping tariff on Indonesian biodiesel.

Lukita said that the country had asked that Indonesian companies be allowed to produce jet biofuel in the USA, with all raw materials sourced from Indonesia.

The USA had responded positively, according to the minister, and he had conveyed the same requirement also to Airbus in France.

Lukia earlier threatened to stop buying Airbus planes if the EU proceeded with its plan to phase out palm oil biofuels.