Indonesian govt on track to revitalize old markets

Indonesian govt on track to revitalize old markets

Indonesian President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) greets traders in the market after the inauguration of Pasar Manis traditional market in Purwokerto, Central Java, on Wednesday (May 4, 2016). (ANTARA/Idhad Zakaria)

You should serve the buyers well with a smile."
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The government has kept its promise of renovating 5,000 traditional markets in the country in the next five years.

After revitalizing 1,002 traditional markets in first year of the program in 2015, the government this year has set itself the target of developing 1,000 traditional markets with a total fund of Rp1.7 trillion.

"We keep our Nawacita promise well. The inauguration of the Pasar Manis Market in Purwokerto is a special event. President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) laid its construction corner stone last year while announcing his Nawacita program to renovate 5,000 markets," Trade Minister Thomas Lembong said in Purwokerto, Central Java, on Wednesday.

He was accompanying President Jokowi, who inaugurated the first phase of revitalization at the Pasar Manis project in Purworkerto.

Nawacita, which is used by President Widodo as a term for his administration's development initiatives, is a Sanskrit term used for nine national priority development programs.

He said the inauguration of the Pasar Manis Market is part of the renovation plan of 5,000 traditional markets up to 2019 in the country.

During the inauguration, the President was accompanied by Trade Minister Thomas Trikasih Lembong and Minister/State Secretary Pratikno.

In his address, the President asked traders to ensure that the market remains spruced up at all times. "I entrust you to keep maintaining the cleanliness of this market. There should be no waste scattered around. The management should be assisted to keep the market clean," President Jokowi told traders.

The President also promised to return to check the market in the coming three years, asking traders to display their goods neatly and be buyer-friendly.

"You should serve the buyers well with a smile. There must be smiles all around, so that malls and supermarkets cannot outclass our market," the President stated.

He further said the prices of goods in the (traditional) market should surely be lower than those in the supermarkets because taxes are lower and the cost of electricity is not as high.

The government plans to renovate 1,000 traditional markets in various areas in Indonesia in 2016.

"The target is 1,000 markets and 863 of them have been identified with programs. Therefore, there are 127 more left to be identified," Trade Minister Thomas said while inspecting renovation of the thee Pasar Manis market in Purwokerto on the previous day.

He added that in 2015, 1,002 traditional markets had been renovated at a cost of Rp1.4 trillion and in 2016, the budget for renovation was set at Rp1.7 trillion. In carrying out the renovation program, the government wanted to not only just revitalize the market, but to also change the mentality of small traders, he said.

"We expect change in the mentality and characteristics of the traders to be healthy, harmonious and supportive of each other," Thomas said.

In 2015, the government had set itself the target of revitalizing 1,017 traditional markets in its working plan (RKP), particularly the Ministry of Trades RKP.

Of the 1,017 target markets, 182 were built with TP (task assistance) funds and 770 others with Special Allocation Funds (DAK).

Apart from that, the Ministry of Cooperatives and UKM (Small and Medium Enterprises) also set a target to build 65 markets.

"Of the target, some 1,002 markets were revitalized, of which 175 were developed with TP funds of the trade ministry, 762 with DAK funds and 65 others by the Cooperatives and UKM Ministry," Thomas said.

In the meantime, in 2016, the trade ministry set a target for building 1,000 markets, of which 220 will be built with TP funds and 695 with DAK funds. The Cooperatives and UKM Ministry is set to develop 85 markets.

During the implementation of the project, some 168 markets will begin construction with TP funds and 695 units with DAK funds. Thus, of the planned 1,000 markets, funds have been allocated for the development of 863 units.

Fund allocation for the remaining ones will be proposed to the Finance Ministry.

"Of the 168 markets which received TP funds, some 70 units have been auctioned so that their development process can be started soon. After all, the development budget allocation list (DIPA) for market development has been issued," the minister said.

During the inauguration of the Pasar Manis market, Minister Thomas stressed on the importance of the market for traders and the people. Moreover, if the traditional market is clean and made modern there will many people coming to shop, which will increase traders turnover, he said.

"Income will then increase, the economy of the region will develop in line with the increasing production," he pointed out.

Thomas added that the market can also then function optimally and benefit traders if the funds that are allocated to the regional government are used in accordance with their initial purpose.

The revitalization of 5,000 markets during the 2015 to 2019 period is mainly aimed at markets that are 25 years and older, markets which were damaged due to disasters, social conflict, markets located in less advantaged villages, markets in border areas, areas which lack trade facilities and areas which have big trade potential.

Through the Trade Ministers Regulation in 2015 on the "Development and the Management of Trade Facility," the government has set guidelines on the revitalization of traditional markets with four principles.

The main principles in the rejuvenation of the markets are physical revitalization, management revitalization, socio-cultural revitalization and economic revitalization.