November 19, 2020, 09.49 PM

JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – To guarantee food security in Indonesia, the central government intends to establish food clusters, said Minister Erick Thohir.

Forming a food cluster in Indonesia would meet the demand of the domestic market, substitute imports, and boost exports, according to Indonesia’s Minister of State-Owned Enterprises.

He vowed that a food cluster does not mean the country has an anti-import stance, rather it is about a measure of control conducted by state-owned enterprises.

“We are not against imports, but we prefer reducing our reliance on it when possible. The Covid-19 pandemic has taught us that a sustainable country is once that has a large market and an abundance of natural resources,” Erick Thohir said during the 5th Jakarta Food Security Summit on Indonesia’s Export Strategy During and Post-Pandemic.

Read also: Achieving Food Security in Indonesia Integral as Global Food Crisis Looms

There are hindrances with regards to establishing a national food industry, particularly in logistics and technology.

For that reason, Erick explained that Indonesian President Joko Widodo has emphasized the importance of pushing for investments even amid the pandemic.

Establishing a food cluster in Indonesia also seeks to improve the livelihoods of farmers, breeders, and fishermen.

The country has slashed the number of food clusters to 12 from a previous 27 especially for value chain clusters, according to Erick Thohir.

Read also: Ministries Team Up to Grow Overseas Presence of Indonesia's State-Owned Enterprises

“From 141 companies, we have reduced it to 41. One of these is for the food value chain cluster where there had previously been several companies which we have consolidated as one company while remaining focused on its core business.”

A food value chain cluster serves to manufacture corn, rice, sugar, chicken, goat, fish, chili peppers, shallots, and salt encompassing the nine commodities the Food State-Owned Enterprises in Indonesia produces.

Aside from achieving national food security, a food cluster in Indonesia supports the government’s ‘Golden Indonesia in 2045’ initiative. The first pillar of the initiative calls for achieving security in food, health, and energy.

(Writer: Nicholas Ryan Aditya | Editor: Dani Prabowo)

Source: https://nasional.kompas.com/read/2020/11/19/15354091/erick-thohir-kita-tidak-anti-impor-tapi-kalau-bisa-ditekan 

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