According to Bank Indonesia (BI), Indonesia will achieve rice self-sufficiency by 2020 if the government is consistent in its efforts to increase the area of paddy cultivation and develop irrigation infrastructure. “Agriculture infrastructure projects are ongoing. It will take three to five years for us to reap the results. Indonesia can be a rice self-sufficient country by 2020,” said Dody Budi Waluyo, assistant to the BI governor for monetary and economic policy. The central bank predicts rice production will reach more than 50 Million Metric Tonnes (MMT) in 2020, while consumption will reach fewer than 43 MMT.
Indonesia is estimated to reach a population of 300 million and with an estimated consumption per person of 144 kilograms of rice per year; the country would easily be rice self-sufficient by 2020. Rice production reached 43.9 MMT coming from 75.4 MMT of paddy in 2015. The government aims to produce 80 MMT of paddy this year. The Agriculture Ministry is determined to open another 80,000 hectares (ha) of new paddy and 500 water deposits after opening 128,441 ha and 1,714 water deposits last year. But Mr. Dody emphasizes that rampant land conversion must stop to realize the projection. Each year, up to 110,000 ha of agricultural land is converted for other use, mainly residential areas.