Deal history comparison #1396

Previous version (130086)

Selected version (130699)

Location #1

Spatial accuracy level
Administrative region
Location
Sinoe, Liberia

Target country
Liberia

Location #2

Spatial accuracy level
Administrative region
Location
Grand Kru, Liberia

Target country
Liberia

Location #3

Spatial accuracy level
Administrative region
Location
Maryland, Liberia

Target country
Liberia

Location #4

Spatial accuracy level
Administrative region
Location
River Cess, Liberia

Target country
Liberia

Location #5

Spatial accuracy level
Administrative region
Location
River Gee, Liberia

Target country
Liberia

Location #1

Spatial accuracy level
Administrative region
Location
Sinoe, Liberia

Target country
Liberia

Location #2

Spatial accuracy level
Administrative region
Location
Grand Kru, Liberia

Target country
Liberia

Location #3

Spatial accuracy level
Administrative region
Location
Maryland, Liberia

Target country
Liberia

Location #4

Spatial accuracy level
Administrative region
Location
River Cess, Liberia

Target country
Liberia

Location #5

Spatial accuracy level
Administrative region
Location
River Gee, Liberia

Target country
Liberia

Land area

Intended size (in ha)
350,000
Size under contract (leased or purchased area, in ha)
[2010] 220000
Size in operation (production, in ha)
[2015] 3000
Comment on land area
Concession area 350,000ha of which 220,000ha can be planted plus 40,000ha for outgrowers. Conflicting information over hectares obtained- Ecofys report states 240 000 hectares.

Intention of investment

Intention of investment
Biofuels, Food crops, For carbon sequestration/REDD

Nature of the deal

Nature of the deal
Lease

Negotiation status

Negotiation status
[2010] Concluded (Contract signed)
Comment on negotiation status
Option to extend lease to 99 years.

Implementation status

Implementation status
[2015] Startup phase (no production)
Comment on implementation status
Land clearance first commenced in December 2010 and accelerated in September 2011, before being halted by a December 2012 freeze on plantation expansion requested by the RSPO in response to community complaints. Plantation expansion re-commenced during 2013 and 2014, in Sinoe and Grand Kru counties. It is estimated that around 3000 hectares have been cleared to date.

Leasing fees

Annual leasing fee
5
Annual leasing fee currency
US Dollar ($)
Annual leasing fee type
per ha
Comment on leasing fees
US$5.00/yr/dev ha, US$1.25/yr/undev ha (10yrs), US$2.50/yr/undev ha (55yrs). To be reviewed every 5 years but not to increase more than 20%

Contract farming

Contract farming
Yes
On leased / purchased area
Yes
On leased / purchased area (in ha)
40,000

Land area

Intended size (in ha)
363,354
Size under contract (leased or purchased area, in ha)
[2010] 220000
[2014] 233354
Size in operation (production, in ha)
[2015] 3000
Comment on land area
In 2010: concession area 350,000ha of which 220,000ha can be planted plus 40,000ha for outgrowers. Conflicting information over hectares obtained- Ecofys report states 240 000 hectares. Farmland grab articles state 260 000ha. The company signed an MOU for an additional 13354ha in 2014 from community members.

Intention of investment

Intention of investment
Biofuels, Food crops, For carbon sequestration/REDD

Nature of the deal

Nature of the deal
Lease

Negotiation status

Negotiation status
[2010] Concluded (Contract signed)
Comment on negotiation status
Option to extend lease to 99 years. The company forced the community to sign four additional MOU's in 2014 during the Ebola outbreak, once community leaders would not attend meetings due to Ebola. The community members signed but do not know what the MOU states.

Implementation status

Implementation status
[2015] Startup phase (no production)
Comment on implementation status
Land clearance first commenced in December 2010 and accelerated in September 2011, before being halted by a December 2012 freeze on plantation expansion requested by the RSPO in response to community complaints. Plantation expansion re-commenced during 2013 and 2014, in Sinoe and Grand Kru counties. It is estimated that around 3000 hectares have been cleared to date. The community claims that the company used the Ebola outbreak to clear more land, as community leaders were dealing with the Ebola outbreak.

Leasing fees

Annual leasing fee
5
Annual leasing fee currency
US Dollar ($)
Annual leasing fee type
per ha
Comment on leasing fees
US$5.00/yr/dev ha, US$1.25/yr/undev ha (10yrs), US$2.50/yr/undev ha (55yrs). To be reviewed every 5 years but not to increase more than 20%

Contract farming

Contract farming
Yes
On leased / purchased area
Yes
On leased / purchased area (in ha)
40,000

Contract #1

Duration of the agreement (in years)
65

Contract #1

Duration of the agreement (in years)
65

Number of domestic jobs created

Jobs created (domestic)
Yes
Planned number of jobs (domestic)
40,000

Number of domestic jobs created

Jobs created (domestic)
Yes
Planned number of jobs (domestic)
40,000
Comment on jobs created (domestic)
Employees are paid US$120 per month

Operating company

Comment on investment chain
Golden Veroleum is owned by the U.S.-based Verdant Fund LP, whose sole investor is Singapore-listed palm oil giant Golden Agri-Resources, part of Sinar Mas Group

Operating company

Comment on investment chain
Golden Veroleum is owned by the U.S.-based Verdant Fund LP, whose sole investor is Singapore-listed palm oil giant Golden Agri-Resources, part of Sinar Mas Group

Data source #1

Data source type
Contract
File
Date
2010-09-01
Comment on data source
Contract between GOL and Golden Veroleum

Data source #2

Data source type
Media report
File
Date
2014-02-21
Comment on data source
Farm land Grab- Liberia: Sinoe complains GVL to Roundtable On Sustainable Palm Oil

Data source #3

Data source type
Research Paper / Policy Report
File
Date
2014-11-03
Comment on data source
Commercial Farms in Africa- received from Ward

Data source #4

Data source type
Media report
File
Comment on data source
Sustainable development institute- what does the contract say? Golden Veroleum Liberia

Data source #5

Data source type
Research Paper / Policy Report
Comment on data source
Ecofys- Land Grabs for biofuels driven by EU biofuels policies, Carlo Hamelinck, 2013

Data source #6

Data source type
Research Paper / Policy Report
File
Date
2013-08-01
Comment on data source
"Oil palm in Africa:Past, present and future scenarios" by Ricardo Carrere from Rain Forest Movement, 2010 (updated in 08/2013)

Data source #7

Data source type
Media report
File
Date
2010-01-12
Comment on data source
Farmland grab- Liberia: GOL and Golden Veroleum in US$ 1.6bn negotiation

Data source #8

Data source type
Media report
File
Date
2013-03-23
Comment on data source
Reuters- Largest Liberian palm oil project is failing locals: study

Data source #9

Data source type
Company sources
File
Date
2010-08-16
Comment on data source
Company Announcement--Golden Veroleum (Liberia) Inc signs Oil Palm Concession Agreement with Government of Liberia

Data source #10

Data source type
Research Paper / Policy Report
File
Date
2013-02-01
Comment on data source
The Forest Trust's Independent Assessment of Free, Prior and Informed Consent Process by Golden Veroleum, February 2013

Data source #11

Data source type
Media report
File
Comment on data source
Sustainable development institute reaction to Ecofys report

Data source #12

Data source type
Research Paper / Policy Report
File
Comment on data source
Forest Peoples Programme- Hollow promises: An FPIC assessment of Golden Veroleum and Golden Agri-Resource’s palm oil project in south-eastern Liberia

Data source #1

Data source type
Contract
File
Date
2010-09-01
Comment on data source
Contract between GOL and Golden Veroleum

Data source #2

Data source type
Research Paper / Policy Report
File
Date
2013-02-01
Comment on data source
The Forest Trust's Independent Assessment of Free, Prior and Informed Consent Process by Golden Veroleum, February 2013

Data source #3

Data source type
Media report
File
Comment on data source
Sustainable development institute reaction to Ecofys report

Data source #4

Data source type
Research Paper / Policy Report
File
Comment on data source
Forest Peoples Programme- Hollow promises: An FPIC assessment of Golden Veroleum and Golden Agri-Resource’s palm oil project in south-eastern Liberia

Data source #5

Data source type
Media report
File
Date
2014-02-21
Comment on data source
Farm land Grab- Liberia: Sinoe complains GVL to Roundtable On Sustainable Palm Oil

Data source #6

Data source type
Research Paper / Policy Report
File
Date
2014-11-03
Comment on data source
Commercial Farms in Africa- received from Ward

Data source #7

Data source type
Media report
File
Comment on data source
Sustainable development institute- what does the contract say? Golden Veroleum Liberia

Data source #8

Data source type
Research Paper / Policy Report
Comment on data source
Ecofys- Land Grabs for biofuels driven by EU biofuels policies, Carlo Hamelinck, 2013

Data source #9

Data source type
Research Paper / Policy Report
File
Date
2013-08-01
Comment on data source
"Oil palm in Africa:Past, present and future scenarios" by Ricardo Carrere from Rain Forest Movement, 2010 (updated in 08/2013)

Data source #10

Data source type
Media report
File
Date
2010-01-12
Comment on data source
Farmland grab- Liberia: GOL and Golden Veroleum in US$ 1.6bn negotiation

Data source #11

Data source type
Media report
File
Date
2013-03-23
Comment on data source
Reuters- Largest Liberian palm oil project is failing locals: study

Data source #12

Data source type
Company sources
File
Date
2010-08-16
Comment on data source
Company Announcement--Golden Veroleum (Liberia) Inc signs Oil Palm Concession Agreement with Government of Liberia

Data source #13

Data source type
Media report
File
Date
2015-07-23
Comment on data source
Farmland Grab- Palm oil in Liberia: violence, threats, and false promises

Data source #14

Data source type
Media report
File
Date
2015-07-23
Comment on data source
Farmland Grab- Liberians 'pressured to sell land' for palm oil plantations

Data source #15

Data source type
Media report
File
Date
2014-07-23
Comment on data source
Farmland Grab- Palm oil land grab during Liberian ebola crisis caused abuses

Consultation of local community

Community consultation
Limited consultation
Comment on consultation of local community
The consultation process was too short and the community was not sufficiently informed on the impact of the palm oil plantation. The Sinoe community has reported Golden Veroleum to the roundtable on sustainable oil palm as the company is currently engaged in active land clearing on our customary land without our free prior informed consent as well as violating the RSPO New planting procedures which requires Golden Veroleum to not proceed with any land preparation, any new planting or infrastructure development. Several members of the Sinoe community have been arrested for attending meetings regarding the project. View the report by Forest Peoples Programme for more information on the consultation process.

How did the community react?

Community reaction
Mixed reaction
Comment on community reaction
According to The Forest Trust (TFT) there is materiality to a number of the claims made by the communities (see Reuters press release). Adverse impacts include insufficient land and forest areas for community to farm/forage and sacred areas have been damaged.

Promised or received compensation

Promised compensation (e.g. for damages or resettlements)
Communities have not been compensated for the loss of future income but only for land and crops per area and is not in compliance with “Price for economic crops damaged during development projects” published by the Ministry of Agriculture on August 20th, 2012.

Promised benefits for local communities

Promised benefits for local communities
Health
Education
Capacity Building
Financial Support
Comment on promised benefits for local communities
The company will provide direct employment for an estimated 40000 persons, as well as develop infrastructure, train out growers and provide them low cost seedlings for cultivation and production of final brand of consumer products for local consumption and export to Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) countriesThe company will provide direct employment for an estimated 40,000 persons, as well as develop infrastructure, train out growers and provide them low cost seedlings for cultivation and production of final brand of consumer products for local consumption and export to Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) countries.

Consultation of local community

Community consultation
Limited consultation
Comment on consultation of local community
The consultation process was too short and the community was not sufficiently informed on the impact of the palm oil plantation. The Sinoe community has reported Golden Veroleum to the roundtable on sustainable oil palm as the company is currently engaged in active land clearing on our customary land without our free prior informed consent as well as violating the RSPO New planting procedures which requires Golden Veroleum to not proceed with any land preparation, any new planting or infrastructure development. Several members of the Sinoe community have been arrested for attending meetings regarding the project. View the report by Forest Peoples Programme for more information on the consultation process. Public meetings where landowners were encouraged to hand over their land to GVL were watched over by powerful local officials, and in at least one case armed police. Global Witness also documents several accounts of violent assaults and arbitrary arrests of those who voiced their concerns. The MOU was not read to the communities.

How did the community react?

Community reaction
Mixed reaction
Comment on community reaction
According to The Forest Trust (TFT) there is materiality to a number of the claims made by the communities (see Reuters press release). Adverse impacts include insufficient land and forest areas for community to farm/forage and sacred areas have been damaged. In May 2015 the community had violent protests about this project. The Liberian president has spoken about the protests by the community members, as she states it is chasing away further investors. Local dissent against the GVL land grab was silenced by beatings, threats, and arbitrary detention.

Displacement of people

Number of people actually displaced
41,000

Promised or received compensation

Promised compensation (e.g. for damages or resettlements)
Communities have not been compensated for the loss of future income but only for land and crops per area and is not in compliance with “Price for economic crops damaged during development projects” published by the Ministry of Agriculture on August 20th, 2012.

Promised benefits for local communities

Promised benefits for local communities
Health
Education
Capacity Building
Financial Support
Comment on promised benefits for local communities
The company will provide direct employment for an estimated 40000 persons, as well as develop infrastructure, train out growers and provide them low cost seedlings for cultivation and production of final brand of consumer products for local consumption and export to Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) countries. The company has not delivered its promises as of July 2015, only six toilets have been built.

Former land owner (not by constitution)

Former land owner
Community

Former land use

Former land use
Smallholder agriculture
Forestry

Former land cover

Former land cover
Forest land
Marginal land
Comment on former land cover
Majority of the land under the concession falls within well established and ecologically important forests.

Former land owner (not by constitution)

Former land owner
Community

Former land use

Former land use
Smallholder agriculture
Forestry

Former land cover

Former land cover
Forest land
Marginal land
Comment on former land cover
Majority of the land under the concession falls within well established and ecologically important forests.

Detailed crop, animal and mineral information

Crops area
Oil Palm

Use of produce

Has domestic use
Yes
Has export
Yes

In country processing of produce

In country processing of produce
Yes
Comment on in country processing of produce
Palm oil, agrofuels

Detailed crop, animal and mineral information

Crops area
Oil Palm

Use of produce

Has domestic use
Yes
Has export
Yes

In country processing of produce

In country processing of produce
Yes
Comment on in country processing of produce
Palm oil, agrofuels

Water extraction envisaged

Water extraction envisaged
Yes

Water extraction envisaged

Water extraction envisaged
Yes