Sorong should function as main farming producer in Papua: President

Sorong should function as main farming producer in Papua: President

Jakarta (ANTARA) – President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) expressed hope that Sorong District in West Papua Province would serve as the main producer of farming commodities for the eastern Indonesia region.

“West Papua Province has vast potential to become the main producer of farming commodities for eastern Indonesia. The province has 11 thousand hectares of cornfields and seven million hectares of food and agriculture fields,” President Jokowi stated during his official visit to Sorong, West Papua, on Monday.

President Jokowi, House of Representatives (DPR RI) Speaker Puan Maharani, Agriculture Minister Syahrul Yasin Limpo, and other officials attended a corn planting event during his official visit to Klamesen Sub-district, Sorong, West Papua.

“West Papuan arable land is vast, yet only at 33 percent of it is utilized,” the president affirmed.

Jokowi then instructed Minister Limpo and West Papua Governor Dominggus Mandacan to boost farming productivity, especially in West Papua Province and Sorong District.

“We should improve production capacity by adjusting our farming cycle from once a year to twice or thrice a year to ensure food self-sufficiency for the region,” President Jokowi stated.

The president urged the ministry to encourage youth farmers to play an active role in development of the region’s agriculture sector.

“The agriculture minister has trained around 800 young farmers, and our next task is to train another two thousand farmers,” he remarked.

President Jokowi was convinced that young farmers could develop the region’s agriculture to achieve food self-sufficiency in the province, as the government has already ensured to meet their needs.

“I was informed that agriculture technology has been utilised during the farming process. The farmers will also be provided business capital, training on agriculture technology, and irrigation improvement facilities from the ministry,” he stated.

After attending the corn planting event, President Jokowi’s next agenda in Sorong was to observe a vaccination drive at a military base and to preside over the regional leadership forum meeting at the Sorong Mayor Office.

Upon completing his day’s agenda, the president was expected to return to Jakarta from the city’s Domine Eduard Osok International Airport.