Introductory Remarks of President of the Republic of Indonesia at Limited Cabinet Meeting (through Video Conference) on Incentives for Farmers and Fishermen to Maintain the Staples Availability, Thursday, 28 May 2020 at the Merdeka Palace, Jakarta
Date 29 Mei 2020
Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.
Distinguished Vice President,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Today’s Limited Cabinet Meeting will discuss incentives for farmers and fishermen to maintain the availability of staple food items. I note there are several large program schemes that can be adopted to help both farmers and fishermen during this pandemic.
First, (the incentives will be distributed) through the social safety net program. We have to make sure that 2.7 (million) farmers and underprivileged farm laborers and one million fishermen and fish farmers are included in the social assistance program that we have, namely the Family Hope Program (PKH), Social Cash Assistance (BST), Village Funds Direct Cash Assistance (BLT Desa), Food Packages assistance, and free/subsidized electricity programs. The main objective of these program schemes is to ease the burden of household consumption costs from underprivileged families, including poor farmers and fishermen.
Second is through the credit interest subsidy program. The program has been decided and implemented. The Government has prepared Rp34 trillion to relax installments and provide loan interest subsidies, which are distributed through Smallholder Business Credit (KUR), Mekaar (Fostering the Economy of the Prosperous Family), Ultra Micro financing (UMi), Pegadaian (state-owned pawnshop), and other finance companies. There were also delays in installments and subsidies to capital assistance recipients by several ministries namely Maritime and Fisheries Business Capital Management Agency (LPMUKP) in Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries and Prospective Farmer and Location Candidates (CPCL) in Ministry of Agriculture.
Third, we have to provide stimulus for working capital. This is also crucial for agriculture, marine, and fisheries business. For farmers and fishermen who have bank account, (the stimulus will be) distributed through the expansion of the KUR program. While for those who do not have a bank account, the distribution can be through UMi, Mekaar, and other program schemes owned by the Ministries. I have ordered the simplification of the procedure and access, so that our farmers, fishermen, fish farmers can obtain the funds.
Fourth is through non-fiscal policy instruments. Through the supply chain policy, we hope agriculture and fisheries businesses will become better through the availability of seeds, fertilizers, and production equipment. I think we did this a few years ago.
And that concludes my statement.
I thank you.
Translated by Galuh Wicaksono H
Reviewed by M. Ersan Pamungkas