Dialogue President of the Republic of Indonesia with Farmers at Buluagung Village, 30 November 2021, Karangan SubDistrict, Trenggalek Regency, East Java Province

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 30 November 2021
Category: Dialog @en
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Farmer I
In this village, there are 75 hectares of rice fields ready to be planted with Mekongga and Inpari 32 seeds.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Mekongga?

Farmer I
Yes, similar to Ciherang seeds. In Buluagung village, we harvest three times a year. Hopefully after the Tugu Dam was built, we can harvest four times a year.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Four times?

Farmer I
Yes, insha Allah [we can harvest] up to three times of paddy and one time of other crops in a year.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Four times in a year? Three times of paddy and one time of corn?

Farmer I
Yes, since paddy needs three months to be harvested.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Three months for one harvest, so nine months in total to harvest three times.

Farmer I
Yes, nine months.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Nine months, so the remaining three months… yes, for other crops.

Farmer I
However, today we still harvest three times a year because at the last planting season, we only use diesel and water pump.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Later with the Tugu Dam, the farmers will not need water pump anymore. Just wait and see if the Tugu Dam can really help farmers to harvest four times a year. If it is true, then it is very good. Speaking of corn, why is the price can be very high?

Farmer I
Yes, Sir. The price can reach Rp4,800 or Rp5,000. But with many crop failures, our income decreases.

I need to explain that here in Trenggalek regency, there is a slight shortage of fertilizer supply, sometimes it is difficult and sometimes it is easy to get. We hope that the fertilizer supply can be added.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
The fertilizer or the price?

Farmer I
I think the price doesn’t matter, Sir.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Oh no problem? How about the supply?

Farmer I
The supply maybe available but sometimes the distribution to the farmers is late.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Which fertilizer? The urea or others?

Farmer I
Only the organic fertilizer is always available. The urea and NPK are a bit difficult.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
The organic one is easy (to get) and the NPK and urea are difficult. Okay.

Farmer I
Yes. But Alhamdulillah in our village, we can use our homemade organic fertilizer.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
So that the price is cheaper. Moreover, it’s free, right? Anything else?

Farmer I
Other issue in our village is that we always use harvesting equipment from other regencies, such as Tulungagung or Ngawi. Since there is one combine harvesting machine here now, we hope that we can have the machine for us.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
So, it means the machine stays here?

Farmer I
Yes, Sir.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
What do you think, Minister of Agriculture? Ok? Fine, the machine stays here.

Farmer I
Alhamdulillah.
Any inputs from other farmers? Go ahead.

Farmer II
Mr. President. I am sorry for speaking in Javanese.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
No problem, I understand. The one who does not understand is the Minister of Agriculture.

Farmer II
I’m sorry Mr. Minister.

I hope that Mr. President can ease the distribution of fertilizer supply, no more delay. I, on behalf of all farmers here, would like to express my gratitude for the continuity of fertilizer supply eventhough the distribution is hampered sometimes. However, I would like to invite Mr. President to inspect it yourself to help the farmers and to add the supply of subsidized fertilizer.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Adding the subsidized fertilizer?

Farmer II
Yes, and the price is lowered. With current prices, the farmers indeed already gain profit. However, we have a lot of household expenditures, including school [fee] for our children particularly during pandemic like this. If I may, I would like to ask for lowering fertilizer price.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
I cannot promise you now, but I will take note. The calculation is complicated but it’s okay, good input.

Farmer II
I also want to add one more thing, on behalf of farmers here, I would like to express gratitude for the Central, provincial as well as regional governments for building the Tugu Dam. I hope it will bring benefit as expected and can increase the welfare of the farmers. Thank you.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
So, the Tugu Dam can accommodate approximately 12 million cubic meters of water. Apart from providing the water for farmers and irrigating the rice fields, it can also keep Trenggalek from being flooded during rainy season. And it was proven, yesterday the Regent said that if it is not for Tugu Dam, Trenggalek would already be flooded as usual.

Apart from being used to prevent flood and for irrigation, the dam can also later be used for the residents for raw water supply if needed. It can be useful if the well is dry. This is a  long-term benefit. This dam has spent budget of Rp1.6 trillion or 1,600 billion rupiah. I believe it will bring huge benefit for the community.

Farmer II
I hope with the construction of Tugu Dam, the residents’ well will not dry because the well pump usage has been reduced.

Thank you.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Well, next?

Farmer III
Me, Sir.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Please, go ahead. The last one.

Farmer III
The last one is for the women, Sir. Our income  drops due to pandemic. We usually do the farming, then making cakes or snacks for a side income while waiting for the harvest time.

Now I ask for your sincerity, Mr. President, to provide additional funds for our business.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Is it for home industry?

Farmer III
For making snacks at home, Sir.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
How much money do you need for making a cake? ten thousand rupiah?

Farmer III
Less than that, Sir.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Okay.

Farmer III
It is an additional capital from you, Sir, not a loan.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Okay, I understand.

Farmer III
Because for the time being we borrow money for that. Thank you, Sir.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
You’re welcome.

That’s all. Thank you.

Farmer I
Sir, one more. Please increase the market price of our rice harvest, and the Bulog (state-owned logistics company) can buy our rice.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
We do not import rice this year. We prove that we can, right? However, the rice supply in the Bulog is still full. Sometimes the problem is the Bulog also finds it difficult to distribute the rice supply. But I will discuss and find the solution for this issue.

Farmer I
We understand, Sir.

President of the Republic of Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
If the Bulog can maximize the distribution of rice, the price will automatically go up. The price will follow the demand and supply. That’s how it works.

I thank you.

That’s all.
Wassalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.

(EST/LW)

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