MFA Supports South Sumatera’s Fishery Products to Dominate ASEAN Markets

Palembang, South Sumatera: "The role of MSMEs in exploiting the opportunities of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) is a clear proof of the realization of the AEC pillars that people-oriented People's development is not just empty jargon," said the Director of ASEAN Economic Cooperation, Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

This Statement was conveyed at the Presentation of Policy Recommendation "Utilization of Fisheries Agreement in ASEAN as an Effort to Increase Access of Fishery Market of Indonesia to Southeast Asia" conducted by Ministry of Foreign Affairs in cooperation with South Sumatra Marine and Fishery Office in Palembang (7/11).

The Presentation of Policy Recommendation was opened by the Governor of South Sumatra, represented by the Secretary of the Province of South Sumatra H. Nasrun Umar, S.H., M.M. and attended by around 100 participants from MSMEs players, related SKPD, ASEAN Study Center of Raden Fatah State Islamic University and Sriwijaya University, and so on.

This activity was also presented by Dr. Arif Wibowo, Chief Inland Fiseheries Resources Development and Management Department (IFRDMD), part of the South East Asia Development Center (SEAFDEC); Widada Sukrisna A.Pi, MSi, Acting Head of Marine and Fisheries Office of South Sumatera Province; and Dr. Achmad Purnomo, Expert Staff Secretary General of the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries of RI as a resource. The event was also presented Mr. Edi Delima, a small business owner of ornamental fish business that has successfully penetrated the Southeast Asian market to share experiences with other participants.

In the speech of the Governor of South Sumatra read by the Regional Secretary of South Sumatra, it was declared that fisheries in South Sumatra have the potential to continuously grow. One of the main sources of economic growth in South Sumatra is the fishery sector, particularly fisheries in the Mainland Public Waters (PUD). PUD South Sumatra has a very large capacity of ± 2.5 million ha with production of 120 tons in 2016.

The development of fisheries, particularly the terrestrial fisheries in South Sumatra, is supported by the presence of IFRDMD which has its headquarters in Palembang, standing on the land donated by the South Sumatra Regional Government. IFRDMD functions to manage and to develop fisheries by rationalizing the utilization of fishery resources for food security and safety through the transfer of new technologies, research and dissemination, not only in South Sumatra and Indonesia but also throughout Southeast Asia.

The sources said that the Indonesian fisheries sector has a great opportunity to utilize the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), encouraged by the local government to ensure that Indonesian fishery products have high product standards. Market confidence in these fishery products is a big capital for MSMEs to enter their products into the ASEAN market.

The task of the next Indonesian fishery MSMEs is to develop processed fishery products that have highly added value, especially in South Sumatra which has many types of preparations such as crackers and pempek made from high protein bone fish.

Related to marketing, MSMEs players can utilize the presence of Indonesian representatives overseas as a liaison with potential buyers and investors. This reflects directly the outward Indonesia's foreign policy rather than just empty jargon.

The New Indonesian fishery MSMEs amounting to 60,160 units have challenges other than product innovation such as technology development and skilled workforce.

It is expected that with the implementation of this Policy Recommendation Presentation, the coordination between the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries RI, SEAFDEC, SKPD, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs RI and Indonesian Representative in overseas can be enhanced so that Indonesian fishery MSMEs can compete and dominate ASEAN market. (Source: Directorate of Economic Cooperation of ASEAN)