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Jokowi pledges to increase fertilizer subsidies to boost production

Tempo - December 13, 2023

Antara, Pekalongan – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo pledged to immediately increase fertilizer subsidies in response to the shortage of the commodity being complained about by farmers.

"I will increase the fertilizer subsidy as the supply is available," he said before agricultural instructors and village supervisory non-commissioned officers (Babinsa) from Central Java, in Pekalongan, on Wednesday, Dec. 13.

He assured that Agriculture Minister Andi Amran Sulaiman would solve the fertilizer shortage and monitor it until next year, hoping that there would be no distribution problems.

However, the President said he could not yet mention the amount of additional fertilizer subsidies because this requires further discussion with the Finance Ministry and approval by the House of Representatives (DPR).

He also stressed that the government has simplified procedures for farmers to receive the subsidized fertilizer.

The government's focus on dealing with the fertilizer issue, he went on, is necessary to boost food production in the country. "Abundant production will make the farmers happy."Expanding access to subsidized fertilizer was also expected to reduce the impact of the El Nino phenomenon, which leads to the importation of agricultural products.

This was also in line with the Agriculture Minister's statement. "Currently, our [rice] imports have reached 3.5 million tons, and it will increase again if we don't curb it from now on," Amran said in early December.

President Jokowi also urged farmers to speed up planting to help Indonesia recover by building a strong foundation for food self-sufficiency.

Source: https://en.tempo.co/read/1808947/jokowi-pledges-to-increase-fertilizer-subsidies-to-boost-productio