Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has called on village heads not to use the Village Fund, which will soon be disbursed by the government, to construct village infrastructure, but rather to develop village economies and to encourage innovation to improve people's welfare.
The President asked Villages, Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration Minister Eko Putro Sandjojo on Sunday to cooperate with businesses to absorb products manufactured in villages.
"If possible, to empower [village] economies, the minister should cooperate with factories, industry and companies so that village products can be absorbed," the President said on Sunday as quoted by kontan.co.id.
He also stressed the importance of villages innovating to develop their economic potential. He gave as examples Umbul Ponggok village in Klaten, Central Java, and Embung Nglanggeran in Gunung Kidul in Yogyakarta, which have managed to develop tourism facilities that could boost village revenues.
"Such innovation can be implemented in many areas in Banten," the President said while promoting the Village Fund program in Tangerang, Banten.
The government has allocated Rp 186 trillion (US$12.42 billion) for the Village Fund in the 2019 state budget, which was recently approved by the House of Representatives. (bbn)