Badung, Bali (ANTARA) - Vice President Ma'ruf Amin spoke of the government’s target to lower the country's stunting rate by seven percent to reach 20 percent or in line with the World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) threshold recommendation.

"We want to further reduce the current 27 percent to 20 percent in accordance with the international standard. Hence, we have to cut it by seven percent," Amin stated during a visit to a community health center (Puskesmas) in Pecatu Village, Bali, here on Thursday.

He admitted to the government's efforts until now being sufficiently effective in lowering the stunting rate.

The government has been seeking innovative ways to prevent stunting and lower the stunting rate in the country.

"Hence, it is how to deal with stunting among teenagers, from pre-marriage to marriage age, and during pregnancy. Intervention since early age is necessary to reduce stunting. If possible, stunting must be eliminated," he stated.

He lauded the Bali government's success in lowering child stunting rate to 16 percent.

Related news: Government targets reducing stunting prevalence to 19 percent in 2024
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Amin was on a day-long working visit to Bali to officially open the 2019 Indonesian Palm Oil Conference (IPOC) and 2020 Pricing Outlook.

During his working visit to Bali, Amin was accompanied by Health Minister Terawan Agus Putranto and the Health Ministry's Director General for Public Health Kirana Pritasari.

In the meantime, at the first plenary meeting of the Indonesia Onward Cabinet 2019-2024 on Oct 24, 2019, President Joko Widodo ordered Health Minister Terawan Agus to lower the cases of stunting among Indonesian children.

Conversing with journalists after attending the cabinet meeting, Agus affirmed he will shortly coordinate with his subordinates at the Health Ministry to obtain comprehensive reports on the issue of stunting.

The incidence of stunting in Indonesia could have been reduced to 27.67 percent this year, or lower than 30.8 percent in 2018.

The Indonesian government has outlined a target to reduce the prevalence of stunting in the country to under 20 percent by 2024.

Currently, child stunting has been observed in several provinces, including East Nusa Tenggara and East Java.

Related news: Indonesian health minister ordered to reduce stunting among children
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Translator: Fransiska N, Fardah
Editor: Sri Haryati
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