The United States is committed to partnering with the Indonesian government and the private sector to enhance Indonesia’s food security. As part of this commitment Ambassador Scot Marciel announced today that the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) will launch a new Agribusiness Market and Support Activity (AMARTA II). This five-year, $15 million program will focus on increasing production of targeted high-value commodities like cocoa, coffee and horticulture, expanding rural access to credit, and advocating for pro-farmer regulatory reform. The AMARTA II program will further expand the range of activities and cooperation between the United States and Indonesia in agriculture and food security.
In addition to the AMARTA II program, the U.S. government has increased support for sustainable production in both agriculture and fisheries, encouraging private sector investment while preserving the natural resource base, enhancing agricultural and university linkages, and increasing bilateral trade in agricultural products. These efforts are a key component of the U.S.-Indonesia Comprehensive Partnership.
The United States is also working with Indonesia to address food security through fisheries. Oceans play a critical role in Indonesian food security. U.S. programs focus on promoting sustainability through responsible marine stewardship at the local level, increasing the supply of food from Indonesian fisheries, and increasing incomes among impoverished coastal and small island communities. The United States is partnering with the Indonesian government and private sector firms to develop and expand sustainable business models and sustainable resource management.
U.S. support for research and development collaboration is another area of growing activity. Agricultural research and education initiatives in Indonesia include: U.S. support for Indonesia’s establishment of an Advanced Agricultural Research Center that will provide linkages to U.S. agricultural research institutions. In addition, USAID’s one million dollar agricultural scholarship program will send talented Indonesian students to U.S. universities to earn advanced degrees in the agricultural sciences.
A three-year, $1.5 million USAID Agricultural Biotechnology Program builds partnerships between U.S. and Indonesian institutions to introduce new technologies, such as beta carotene enhanced rice varieties and virus-resistant potatoes and tomatoes. The program also promotes low-cost integrated pest management techniques to improve agricultural production and rural livelihoods.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Cochran and Borlaug Fellowship programs continue to support Indonesia’s human resource development in food and agriculture by sending selected Fellows to the United States for short-term educational and research programs. A State Department program will support a series of speakers on agricultural and fisheries technology including in the area of biotechnology, implemented in collaboration with Winrock International and its Indonesian Agricultural Development Council (A/D/C) scholars.
Agricultural trade is a critical component of food security. The United States and Indonesia have set a goal of reaching $10 billion in bilateral trade in agriculture, fisheries, and forestry products by 2014. Achieving this goal will expand employment opportunities and support incomes in both nations.