BI develops cacao cluster in Mamuju

BI develops cacao cluster in Mamuju


Makassar, South Sulawesi (ANTARA News) - Bank Indonesia representative in eastern Indonesia covering Sulawesi, Maluku and Papua will do pioneering work in developing cacao cluster in Mamuju, West Sulawesi.

The cluster is intended to serve as a pilot project under a program to make use of available potentials, the head of BI representative office for those areas, Suhaedi, said here on Friday.

Suhaedi, former head of BI in Manado, said the district administration and plantation service would carry out the plan.

"If the pilot project is feasible banks could be asked to provide the finance," he said.

He said he did not agree with perception that banks are reluctant to invest in the plantation sector.

Banks would be eager to provide credits for feasible business which is seriously implemented, he said.

If the pilot project could lead to massive movement in business, banks and the farmers would both gain, he said.

"The farmers would prosper and bank would have larger clients," he said.

Sulawesi is the main cacao producing island of Indonesia, which is the third largest cacao producer in the world after the Ivory Coast and Ghana.

In the areas of Sulawesi, Maluku and Papua, BI already helped development of chili clusters in the sub-district of Tanralili of Maros regency in South Sulawesi.

The chili clusters were developed since May 2011 under a memorandum of understanding between BI and the district administration of Maros regency.

The program was a follow up of a MoU between BI and the agriculture ministry on cooperation in development of the agricultural sector signed in Jakarta in March 2011.

Development of the chili clusters has been carried out based on the result of market feasibility study using appropriate technology, Suhaedi said.