Govt to merge 15 plantation firms into holding company

Surabaya, E Java (ANTARA News) - The government will soon merge 15 state plantation firms into a holding plantation company to give them wider access to bank loans, an official said.

"Now, with dozens of state plantation companies working individually, we see they have difficulty in obtaining bank loans," Assistant for Restructuring and Strategic Planning to State Enterprises Minister Pandu Djajanto said on Monday.

He said the plantation companies consisted of 14 state limited liability companies and one public company.

"The phases of the merger process is currently being worked out by the Finance Ministry," he said.

Asked about the foundation underlying the government`s plan to merge the 15 state plantation companies, he said the move was expected to enable them to operate more efficiently.

"If the 15 state plantation companies merge into one company their funds will become larger," he said.

The plan to merge 15 state plantation companies into a holding company was the program of the State Enterprises Ministry in 2011, he said.

With the strategic resizing step, the number of state-owned companies across Indonesia could later fall to 118, he said.

"As a matter of fact, the resizing will also enable them to become publicly listed companies," he said.