Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The government will lower the poverty rate from 12.36 percent in 2011 to 11.7 percent this year, Coordinating Minister for People`s Welfare Agung Laksono said.
"It is expected the rate will drop to 11.7 by March 2013 and to achieve the target all parties need to work hard," he said in his new year speech here on Wednesday.
He said in September 2011, the poverty rate was recorded at 12.36 percent and in March 2011 at 12.5 percent.
In March 2010 it was recorded at 13.3 percent while in March 2009 it stood at 14.1 percent.
"The number of poor people continues to drop according to the National Statistics Agency (BPS)," he said.
He said various efforts would be made to optimize the implementation of poverty alleviation programs among others by increasing the effectiveness of the implementation of the programs.
"The community-based poverty alleviation program must continue to be increased," he said.
Apart from that he said a social security package would also be made to increase the effectiveness of and expand poverty alleviation programs.
Programs such as low-cost housing, cheap electricity, cheap foods and others would also be carried out under coordinated programs.
A welfare index would also be formulated to map out the people`s welfare.
"People empowerment-based programs also need to be integrated into the national people`s empowerment program," he said.