The Jakarta Post
North Sumatra has become a major exporter of agricultural products in Indonesia, thanks to serious efforts made by the local government in promoting farming activities the province.
According to Agriculture Minister Syahrul Yasin Limpo, the North Sumatra administration’s efforts to empower local farmers and support plantation companies had contributed to a sharp increase in the exports of agricultural commodities from the province.
“It indicates that North Sumatra has the potential to further develop its agricultural sector in the future,” he said in a ceremony to launch the shipment of export commodities worth Rp 79.6 billion to 28 countries in the Modern Industrial Zone, Deli Serdang regency, North Sumatra, on Thursday.
According to data provided by the ministry’s agricultural quarantine office, the province’s agricultural export volume increased by 23.7 percent year-on-year (yoy) in 2019, while its export value rose by 21 percent to Rp 32.2 trillion (US$2.3 billion) from Rp 26.6 trillion in 2018.
The province’s agricultural exports have shown an increasing trend since 2017, when the export value slumped to $654 million, according to Statistics Indonesia (BPS). The province exports a wide range of commodities, such as palm oil, rubber, coffee and sawn timber.
Despite the increase, North Sumatra saw a 5.7 percent decline in industrial exports from $8.57 billion in 2017 to $8.08 billion in 2018, which caused an overall 4.77 percent decline in exports from $9.22 billion in 2017 to $8.78 billion in 2018.
North Sumatra administration secretary R. Sabrina said the province’s prospects in agriculture was due to its cast farming areas.
She said the provincial administration would keep supporting farmers to increase their production and agricultural exports from the region.
“If our production and exports keep increasing, it would help the welfare of the local farmers,” she said. (mpr)