Regulatory Shifts in SE Asia Agribusiness: RSPO to ASEAN-RAI

The article titled “Shifting Regulatory Regimes of Agribusiness and Plantation Investments in Southeast Asia: From RSPO to ASEAN-RAI” written by Helana Varkkey and co-authored by Robert Cole et al. discusses the changes in the regulatory framework of agribusiness and plantation investments in Southeast Asia. The article focuses on the transition from the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) to the ASEAN Guidelines on Promoting Responsible Investment in Food, Agriculture, and Forestry (ASEAN RAI). The authors examine the reasons for this shift and assert that the ASEAN RAI offers a more comprehensive and inclusive approach to promoting sustainable agribusiness and plantation investments in the region. A comparison is drawn between the two frameworks to identify their respective advantages and limitations. The authors also address the challenges faced in implementing the ASEAN RAI, such as a lack of institutional capacity and the necessity for effective monitoring and evaluation mechanisms. The authors conclude that the ASEAN RAI is a positive step towards promoting responsible and sustainable agribusiness and plantation investments in Southeast Asia but suggest that further efforts are needed to ensure its effective implementation.  Read the article in full here

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