Don’t speak again about traditional livestock farming

Kupang Post, 3/3/2014

A recent discussion on cattle development in NTT involving a Bank Indonesia delegation from NTT province and the Kupang Post showed Bank Indonesia and Kupang Post’s interest in supporting the resolve of the government that NTT become a Livestock Province.

Head of the Bank Indonesia delegation from NTT, Naek Tigor Sinaga, said NTT’s economic growth showed an increase of 5.55 per cent in 2013. 34.22 per cent of this comes from the farming sector, particularly horticulture and livestock.

According to Sinaga, there are five main food commodities in NTT and one of them is livestock. Bank Indonesia, said Sinaga, is already making steps to stimulate the interest of entrepreneurial farmers and livestock farmers in Belu and plans to do the same in Kupang. In Belu, said Sinaga, Bank Indonesia is also developing the plant lamtoro as a source of livestock feed. Assistance for livestock farmers in the area is in the form of grants which form part of Bank Indonesia’s corporate social responsibility program.

Sinaga said, livestock development efforts by farmers until now have been often blocked by the problem of lack of funds or working capital. Because of that, Bank Indonesia, by means of this discussion, hopes to push the banking sector to join in providing funds via credit services to farmers.

According to Bank Indonesia’s data, 56 per cent of banking credit is channelled to livestock farming activities like pig farming, beef cattle farming and poultry. In TTS, around Rp 9.3 billion in credit has been channelled by the banking sector to cattle farming efforts. “This indicates that the banking sector is joining in efforts to develop livestock farming efforts,” said Sinaga.

Managing Director of Bank NTT, Daniel Tagu Dedo, S.E, explains that Bank NTT has worked closely with 204 cattle farming groups in NTT, supplying microcredit funds to the value of Rp 49 billion. The risk is high when the cattle farming is done in the traditional way. “I would actually prefer if we spoke of livestock farming as an industry. Let’s not talk about traditional livestock farming. If it’s not an industry, it is difficult to gain the trust of the banking sector,” said Tagu Dedo.