Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) inaugurated the Mentawir nursery facility in North Penajam Paser, East Kalimantan Province, as a center for the greenery program of the new capital city (IKN) Nusantara and its surroundings.

"After almost 1.5 years, the Mentawir nursery was completed today. It has a capacity of 15 million seedlings for forest rehabilitation," the president remarked during his speech at the inauguration ceremony as broadcast from the Presidential Secretariat network on Tuesday.

He noted that the nursery facility is equipped with a germplasm center in the form of a biobank and a seed bank as the main components prepared by the government.

The seedlings grown in the facility will be used for seeding in forest rehabilitation through replanting trees at several former mining locations, Jokowi added.

"We can do this if we have a large nursery. Do not initiate planting a million trees without having a nursery," he emphasized.

He outlined that the Mentawir nursery has 15 million plant seeds, including several plants endemic to Kalimantan, such as sungkai, shorea, camphor tree, tengkawang, ironwood, and yellow balau (bangkirai).

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In addition, guava seeds will be planted at several points for animal food.

In order to support the animal ecosystem, the Mentawir nursery also has breeding facilities based on the concept of "test-tube babies" in a bid to replenish the animal population that is starting to decline.

"Animals that had started to become extinct are also available. The technology can also be used for replicating extinct animals," the president revealed.

Jokowi said that sperm storage equipment for animal test-tube babies is already available at the Bogor Agricultural Institute (IPB).

"I am happy with this. The equipment is available at IPB. Some will be added if we can realize this germplasm center. This is what we have wanted for a long time," he stated.

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Translator: Andi Firdaus, Resinta Sulistiyandari
Editor: Yuni Arisandy Sinaga
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