News & Topics

Stop Disorderly Expansion of Oil Palm Firms and Utilization of Trunks for Sustainable Plantations
Commencement of the SATREPS Palm Trunk Project in Malaysia

October 28, 2019

Science and Technology Research Partnership for Sustainable Development (SATREPS)

On September 19, 2019, JST held the kick-off ceremony of the SATREPS project on “Sustainable Replantation of Oil Palm by Adding Value to Oil Palm Trunk through Scientific and Technological Innovation” (SATREPS Palm Trunk Project) in Penang, Malaysia.

The Japanese attendees of the ceremony were President Masaru Iwanaga, the Japan International Research Center for Agricultural Sciences (JIRCAS); Shinichiro Kanoya, Consulate-General of Japan in Penang; Kensuke Fukawa, Chief Representative of JICA Malaysia; Emi Kaneko, Director of JST Singapore Office; and Project Leader Akihiko Kosugi. Many researchers and top university officials were among the Malayasian attendees and included Dr. Asma Ismail, Vice Chancellor of the University of Science Malaysia (USM); Professor Sudesh Kumar; and Sanath Kumaran, Senior Manager of the Malaysian Palm Oil Certification Council.

Malaysia produces approximately one-third of the world’s palm oil. The tree age of oil palms producing palm oil has been reduced to approximately 25 years owing to the declining productivity of their palm fruits and replantation. Oil palm trunks that have lost their economic values are abandoned on the ground and thus bring about negative effects such as replantation failure due to the soil damage caused by the spread of soil-borne pathogens, deforestation of tropical forest by cultivation of new plantations, and greenhouse gas emissions due to decomposition.

The project aims at realization of the sustainable oil palm plantation management and creation of a novel biomass industry through scientific and economic assessments of the impact of the abandoned oil palm trunks and development of manufacturing technologies of various value-added products produced from the trunks, such as biogases and biodegradable materials.

Link to the SATREPS project:
Link to the news release about the kick-off ceremony by JIRCAS:
  • President Iwanaga (JIRCAS) delivered a speech at the kick-off ceremony.

  • Vice Chancellor Asma Ismail (USM) delivered a speech at the kick-off ceremony.

  • Project Leader Kosugi introduced the outline of the project at the kick-off ceremony.

  • The Joint Coordinating Committee (JCC) meeting.

  • Dr. Kondo from JIRCAS, Project Leader Kosugi, and Prof. Sudesh and Prof. Rokiah from UMS (from the left) at the JCC meeting.