Indonesia expands rice fields on Borneo island hinh anh 1Land rehabilitation in Rawa Belanti, Central Kalimantan (Source:

Jakarta (VNA) – Indonesian President Joko Widodo has directed the Ministry of Public Works and Housing (PUPR) to expand the country’s agricultural land programme through a project to optimise 165,000 hectares of rice fields in Pulang Pisau district in Central Kalimantan on Borneo island.

PUPR Minister Basuki Hadimulyono said that 85,500 hectares of land in this region are being used for agricultural purposes and an additional 79,500 hectares need to be reclaimed with the aim of raising the rice productivity to 2 tonnes per hectare.

The project will be carried out in 2020 and last until 2022. It aims to optimise alluvial land, not peatland in the Government’s Peatland Development Project (PLG).

Data announced on April 28 showed that 20 out of the 34 provinces and cities of Indonesia were facing a lack of food, thus making food security one of the Government’s top priorities.

General Secretary of the Consortium for Agrarian Reform (KPA) Dewi Kartika attributed the Government’s agricultural reform programme to the lack of food as agricultural land has been gradually cut to mining projects and industrial tree plantations.

She cited the National Land Agency’s statistics as saying that 650,000 hectares of agrarian land were lost in 2018./.