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Indonesian Agriculture Minister sees better synergy and stronger impact under One CGIAR

Indonesia’s Minister of Agriculture (MOA), H.E. Syahrul Yasin Limpo, assured his support for the One CGIAR reform where the 15-center research network will be consolidated under a one-governance system. Minister Limpo conveyed this message during an online meeting between MOA and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) on 17 September 2020.

During the meeting he stressed the importance of One CGIAR to build better synergy and create stronger impact in Indonesia and Southeast Asia. The core of the reform, which begins on 1 October 2020, will include the creation of a superordinate management structure to organize all phases of development more effectively, according to CGIAR.

“I am very appreciative of IRRI’s research in Indonesia and our country has benefitted from that tremendously,” said Minister Limpo.  “I expect IRRI’s program in Indonesia to continue to be strengthened under One CGIAR as we need to ensure food security for the 267 million people in our country.”

IRRI  Director General  Matthew Morell thanked the Indonesian government for its continuous support to IRRI and CGIAR. Indonesia and IRRI have worked together for almost six decades since the beginning of the establishment of the Institute. He also assured the Minister that IRRI will continue to support Indonesia under One CGIAR.

“One CGIAR will bring together a holistic agenda across food and nutritional security, climate change, the environment, livelihoods and prosperity, and gender and youth empowerment in agriculture,” Dr. Morell said.  “Through this, a greater systems approach will be taken, supporting key crops such as rice but also working on diversification options.”

Rice is one of the most important agricultural commodities in Indonesia. It is the staple food for the majority of Indonesians, accounting for over half of the calories in the average daily diet. The country is the world’s third-largest rice producer after China and India, producing 31.3 million tons of milled rice in 2019. However, it is also the third-largest rice consumer in the world.

Underpinned by the partnership between Indonesia and IRRI, as well as the country’s  success in developing its agriculture sector, the average rice yield has increased from  2.4 tons per hectare in 1972 to almost 5.1 tons per hectare  today. Recognizing IRRI’s role in helping the country achieve rice self-sufficiency in the 1980s. In view of this, the Indonesian President Suharto presented the Bintang Jasa Utama, the country’s highest merit award, to IRRI in 1989.

Present at the meeting were Prof. Tahlim Sudaryanto, IRRI Board of Trustee member;  Dr. Yurdi Yasmi, IRRI regional representative for Southeast Asia; Dr. Hasil Sembiring, IRRI liaison scientist- Indonesia; Dr. Fadjri Jufry, director general of the Indonesian Agency for Agricultural Research and Development;  and Dr. Priatna Sasmita, director of the Indonesian Center for Food Crop Development.  MOA officials who also attended the meeting were Dr. Ade Chandra, director of Foreign Cooperation;  Dr. Suwandi, director general of Food Crops ; Dr. Nasrullah, director general of Animal Husbandry and Animal Health; Dr. Ali Jamil, director general of Agricultural Quarantine Agency; Dr. Kasdi Subagyo, director general of Estate Crops; and Mr. Bambang, special staff and expert.

CGIAR is a global partnership of 15 organizations conducting research for a food-secure future. Other organizations under CGIAR include Africa Rice CenterCenter for International Forestry ResearchInternational Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry AreasInternational Crops Research Institute for Semi-Arid TropicsInternational Food Policy Research InstituteInternational Institute of Tropical AgricultureInternational Livestock Research InstituteInternational Maize and Wheat Improvement CenterInternational Potato CenterInternational Water Management InstituteThe Alliance of Bioversity International and the International Center for Tropical AgricultureWorld Agroforestry, and WorldFish.

These organizations will continue to work together to address food and nutrition security, poverty alleviation and improvement of quality of life, gender equality and social inclusion, climate change, and environment and biodiversity.