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Jakarta Post

Government told to cancel $200m loan from World Bank

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Tue, July 24, 2018   /   01:40 pm
Government told to cancel $200m loan from World Bank Agrarian and Spatial Planning Minister Sofyan Djalil. (The Jakarta Post/wienda parwitasari)

The Agrarian Reform Consortium (KPA) has called on the government to cancel US$200 million loan from World Bank because the activities that will be funded by loan is "nothing to do with agrarian reform".

“Agrarian reform is not a land registration program, land certification or the creation of maps,” KPA secretary-general Dewi Kartika pointed out in a press release obtained by The Jakarta Post on Tuesday.

She explained that agrarian reform was an effort to resolve a country or region’s disparity in land ownership, with small farmers and indigenous people controlling very small plots of land to use as a source of income.

Previously, Agrarian and Spatial Planning Minister and National Land Agency (BPN) head Sofyan Djalil announced that World Bank had agreed to disburse a $200 million loan for an agrarian reform program.

World Bank said in a statement that the fund would be used to finance One Map Program which will help land users obtain clarity and security of tenure and access to land and natural resources.

"The program will accelerate the government’s agrarian efforts through participatory mapping, electronic land information services, and systematic and complete land registration," World Bank said in a statement.

However, Dewi said the government and World Bank could not claim that the fund would be used to fund the acceleration of land reform when the activity contradicted the very definition of agrarian reform itself.

She said agrarian reform should be able to resolve prolonged agrarian conflicts by introducing a policy that could recover people’s control of the land.

“With such objectives, land reform will give these people the opportunity to own land,” Dewi said, adding that meanwhile, land certification is only a government service for existing landowners.

“It is not fair that generations of people have to shoulder the loan.” (bbn).