Remarks of President of the Republic of Indonesia during the Launching of Inclusive Partnership Movement to Level Up MSMEs at the SMESCO Building, Jakarta, October 3, 2022
Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,
May peace be upon us all,
Greetings of virtue.
Distinguished Coordinating Minister of Economic Affairs and all Ministers of the Indonesia Onward Cabinet,
Distinguished Chairperson of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin) and all ranks of Kadin,
Distinguished CEOs, business actors, business association, and all micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs),
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Let me remind you again that our global economy is currently in turmoil.
There’s a high degree of uncertainty and all countries, including developed countries, are experiencing difficulties.
The pandemic has indeed started to ease off. We may soon declare that the pandemic is over. However, it is all about the world. The post-pandemic economic recovery has not returned to normal yet. It is getting worse due to the pandemic and the war in Ukraine.
We are all aware that the world is facing energy crisis, food crisis, and financial crisis. But alhamdulillah, according to Chairperson of Kadin, Indonesia managed to grow positively at 5.44 percent in Q2.
I still believe that we can increase the value in Q3. The key lies in unity. We all must be in synergy. We must share the same feelings for each other in facing tough challenges. Be united.
We need to strengthen ‘Indonesia Incorporated’ (a program to promote Indonesia). Business actors from large companies to small enterprises must collaborate to solve problems on the ground in a concrete and tangible manner. Micro, small, medium, and large-sized businesses will become a great force once you are united.
For Jakarta, provinces, regencies, cities, and villages, they must join hands just as we did to escape the pandemic. At that moment, I saw all of us working together. The Government, the private sector, alhamdulillah we made it. The same goes for this matter. We need to cooperate.
Let me give you an example, I was amazed by corn farmers. Indonesia’s corn imports reached 3.5 million tons per year and have declined for 7 consecutive years to 800 thousand tons per year.
Because of what?
Corn farmers received guidance and assistance. As we heard earlier, normally in a 1-hectare area, farmers can only produce 4 tons, but now they can produce 8 tons. The production cost is approximately Rp1,800-1,900. That’s what I knew when I went to Dompu. The selling price can be Rp3,800 per kilogram. The profit can reach 100 percent.
I hope it is not just corn. Other commodities should be assisted with the same pattern. If corn works, rice, cassava, porang, and coffee will too. That will be the function of big companies. The company in an area may be big with its great factory, but the environment should not be poor. Be careful. Community development is critical, including the shabby stalls nearby.
The development can be carried out like the training we saw before. The training for MSMEs related to knowledge about product packaging and good branding. This is what we expect. The Government cannot do it alone. We can quickly make a breakthrough by way of partnership, like the one we started this morning.
I also saw honey products. Sellers usually put honey in bottles, selling them to the market with good packaging and brand names. The price will be two or three-fold higher. That is what we expect from the training. Our local products do not only dominate domestic markets, but also international markets. This is what we are aiming for.
For example, there will be many automotive factories that will be established in our country. I have ordered them to partner with industrial SMEs for the supply of exhaust, mirrors, interior of the seats, and other components. Big companies should partner with farmers or MSMEs. If the partnership works, I believe it will have a good impact, extreme poverty in the country will be handled quickly.
Two months ago, I also visited mango farmers in Gresik. The mangoes had good quality, but they have not been noticed by the market yet. At that time, I made a call to a company from the United Arab Emirates Lulu [Retail Group] to pick the mangoes because the commodity has a potentially large export market. However, this is not a connection between the producer and the market demand which is actually has a very big opportunity.
One thing that makes me upset is when we can produce it, but we import it instead, be it products from small business or large business. Let me give another example. I went to Southeast Sulawesi last week, to Buton. The region has an asphalt deposit of 662 million tons and still in the process of downstreaming and industrialization. It is only from one company. We have 662 million tons of asphalt, yet we still import 5 million tons a year. We should not do import for any products. If we have it domestically, do not import.
That concludes my remarks.
And by saying bismillahirrahmanirrahim, this morning I launch the Inclusive Partnership Movement to Level Up MSMEs.
Wassalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.