CLERMONT-FERRAND, France—Michelin has stepped up its environmental efforts with the full acquisition of a sustainable natural rubber pilot project in Indonesia.
Launched in 2015, the Royal Lestari Utama (RLU) project was previously owned 49 percent by Michelin and 51 percent by joint venture partner Barito Pacific Group.
In a June 21 statement, Michelin said with the acquisition, it is now the sole owner of the project, which operates three licenses covering nearly 70,000 hectares (nearly 173,000 acres) in Sumatra, in the Jambi province, and 18,000 hectares (about 44,500 acres) in Borneo, in the East Kalimantan province.
The move, said the French group, is a "long-term commitment" from Michelin to produce sustainable natural rubber and toward improving the living standards for local communities.
According to Michelin, the territories covered by the project had suffered "great damage and deforestation" before the involvement of Michelin and its Indonesian partner.
"With the takeover, the group reasserts its trust in the project and the long-term vision it requires," said the tire maker.