With a 569,000 ha landbank, Golden Agri-Resources is one of the largest palm oil companies in the world. The company has improved its traceability commitment and was the highest ranked palm oil company in this year’s report.
At the end of 2017, Golden Agri-Resources achieved full traceability to the plantation for company-owned mills, but Golden Agri-Resources’ subsidiaries have faced governance problems related to deforestation and human rights abuses. A 2018 report by Friends of the Earth describes environmental and human rights abuses in Liberia by Golden Veroleum Liberia and its primary investor, Golden Agri-Resources. Also in 2018, the Indonesian Corruption Eradication Commission arrested seven executives for bribery – including three executives from Golden Agri-Resources subsidiaries in the palm oil business. The alleged illegal activities also include dumping of palm oil processing waste into water systems causing significant harm.
In recent years, the company has seen community protests against the company’s expansion plans, while it has also been the subject of a number of RSPO complaints. Early in 2020, a complaint filed by Forest Peoples Programme alleged that the company made bribes to cover up land use violations in Central Kalimantan.
Golden Agri-Resources has been a member of the RSPO since 2005, and in 2014, Golden Agri-Resources endorsed the New York Declaration on Forests. Its top shareholder is Golden Moment, while Vanguard, BlackRock, and Dimensional are among the top 10 owners. Dutch investor Robeco, which has tightened its palm oil sustainability policies in recent years, has sold its shares of Golden Agri-Resources.