"The government of Southeast Sulawesi this year will maximize the use of cacao plantation areas in order to support its determination to achieve a production target of one million tons of cacao," he remarked here on Friday.
He noted that of the 168 thousand hectares of cacao plantations in West Sulawesi, efforts have been intensified in 65 thousand hectares since 2009 to improve the quality and production.
"We hope to maximize the use of all cocoa plantations in West Sulawesi within the next three years to support the program to make Indonesia the worlds largest producer of the commodity," he stated.
In addition, Tanawali noted that the cacao processing industry in Indonesia should continue to grow stronger to increase the processing capacity.
Due to growth in the cacao processing industry in 2015, the processing capacity increased to 765 thousand tons from 345 thousand tons in 2010.
During a visit to the cacao processing company PT Mars Symbioscience Indonesia in Makassar, South Sulawesi, in August last year, Industry Minister Saleh Husin stated that the number of cacao processing companies rose to 19 from 15 units in the previous year.
"The government has encouraged development of the cacao processing industry by restricting exports of cacao beans since 2010," the minister noted at the time.
Husin remarked that under the Cacao National Movement Program, the government was optimistic of boosting the productivity of the countrys cacao plantations from 0.5 ton to 2 tons per hectare.
Therefore, the minister emphasized that the government will facilitate investment in the cacao processing industry by helping provide infrastructure, one-stop service, fiscal facility, and exemption of import duty on factory machines.
Indonesia is the worlds third-largest producer of cacao beans after the Ivory Coast and Ghana in Africa, and Sulawesi is the largest cacao producing region in the country.