Food security is an increasingly crucial issue in facing economic developments this year. Collaboration between the government and state-owned enterprises (SOEs) must be closer to encourage the increased food production.
Minister of Agriculture Syahrul Yasin Limpo conveyed that world food insecurity is caused by various issues, especially geopolitics. Moreover, this happened during the Covid-19 pandemic which had suppressed food production enough to cause high inflation in the last few periods.
Nevertheless, he ensures that the ecosystem between the government and SOEs that are currently being built is collaborative so that it has the opportunity to encourage the resilience of the food and beverage sector.
According to Yasin Limpo, the Ministry of Agriculture together with PT Bank Negara Indonesia (Persero) Tbk. or BNI (stock code: BBNI) can play a proactive role in encouraging the Alsintan Taxi program (agricultural tools and machines), one of the government's mainstay programs in strengthening food production.
Moreover, BNI has a People's Business Credit (PBC) facility that can be used by farmers to procure as well as maintain Alsintan.
"I hope that BNI will be at the forefront of improving food security. Moreover, President Joko Widodo agreed to roll out People's Business Credit (PBC). I hope that BNI can implement this strategy and concept well," he said.
Yasin Limpo continued, Indonesia is one of the main food suppliers in the world. Programs to develop independent and modern agriculture are crucial. This year, he continued, his party also continues to encourage the 1000 Alsintan Taxi program for food crop agricultural product centers throughout Indonesia.
“The most basic and great strength of this nation is in the agricultural sector. The farmer's exchange rate (FER) or the value of farmers' welfare increased compared to their needs, namely 109.29 in March 2022 or an increase of 0.42% compared to the FER in February 2022, which was 108.83," he explained.
Meanwhile, BNI Institutional Relations Director Sis Apik Wijayanto added, the company is committed to paying special attention to food security. BNI will be proactive to continue on encouraging sustainable financing facilities, especially in the agricultural sector. Moreover, the government has warned of the threat of an energy and food crisis during this pandemic period.
"BNI will proactively fill the existing opportunities with financing, especially in the agricultural sector," concluded Sis. (*)