This can reduce 30 percent of the country's import problems...
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Agriculture Ministry is preparing swamp land in South Sumatra as a productive agricultural area to make the region a national food buffer and bring down rice imports.

"This will not be used for self-sufficiency, but a national food buffer," Agriculture Minister Andi Amran Sulaiman informed in a statement released by his office on Friday.

He said that modern efforts to optimize swamp land in South Sumatra are not only being pursued to achieve food self-sufficiency, but also to make the region a national food buffer.

The development of the agricultural sector in South Sumatra is also being carried out to reduce rice imports by up to 30 percent. It is expected to significantly address the food import issues faced by the country, he added.

“This can reduce 30 percent of the country's import problems. Only in South Sumatra alone," Sulaiman said.

His ministry is trying to optimize swamp lands in the South Sumatra region as an alternative to increase rice production. The effort is also part of the ministry's commitment to speed up planting needs.

According to him, the development of swamp land in the area would be managed through land optimization, which is expected to increase the planting index and productivity.

Swamp land optimization will focus on improving water and land infrastructure. With the help of proper water and land management systems, it is hoped that swamp land can become productive agricultural land, Sulaiman explained.

Meanwhile, the ministry's director general of infrastructure and facilities, Ali Jamil, said that swampy rice fields in South Sumatra span an area of 340,486 hectares.

Jamil informed that in 2024, swamp land optimization activities in South Sumatra will cover an area of 98,400 hectares, comprising 22 thousand hectares in Banyuasin district, 65 thousand hectares in Ogan Komering Ilir district, 5 thousand hectares in East OKU district, 4 thousand hectares in Ogan Ilir district, and 2,400 hectares in Muara Enim district.

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Translator: Muhammad Harianto, Resinta Sulistiyandari
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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