Minister of Agriculture Andi Amran Sulaiman stated that the government readied the development of a sugar factory in Merauke, Papua. Minister Amran claimed to have discussed the matter with the Ministry of Environment and Forestry.
“Forestry Directorate General has prepared more than 1 million hectares of land, and we will directly inspect [the land],” he said when met at the ministry office on Friday, November 10, 2023. The sugar factory will reportedly be developed in Food areas.
However, he did not explain when the development of this sugar factory would commence.
Earlier, Amran relayed that the government planned to develop a sugar factory on 1-2 million hectares of land, with the initial development planned for 200,000 hectares of land.
According to Amran, there are two reasons for the development of a sugar factory in Papua. First, the region has the appropriate climate to plant sugarcane, the raw material for sugar. Second, land is abundant in Papua still.
“This is a huge industry, so it’s strategic to establish it [in Papua],” he said. There are even a number of investors interested in funding the factory development.
Amran, however, did not disclose the required amount of investment needed in developing the factory. He only stated that the range is between Rp2.5 trillion to Rp3 trillion. The government also plans to invite private investors to fund this project.
The sugar production, Amran added, will depend on the factory capacity. He estimated the factory to produce between 8,000 to 12,000 tin cans of sugar every day.