Project BackgroundDuring his address to the Food Security Summit in Jakarta in 2012, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono noted that the state of food security in Indonesia was still fragile. Key challenges facing the country include low agricultural productivity and low purchasing power of farmers. Although the contribution of agriculture to Indonesia’s GDP has fallen from 19 per cent in 1990 to 15 per cent in 2010 and its share in total employment from 56 per cent to 38 per cent, the number of persons employed in agriculture is significant at about 42 million.
Food and nutrition insecurity and limited decent employment opportunities represent serious challenges in Indonesia’s Nusa Tenggara Timur (NTT) province, home to some of the nation’s most isolated and vulnerable communities. NTT has over 4.5 million people. Approximately 80 per cent of its population is rural, and 65 per cent of its population lives below the national poverty line. The rural poor often lack access to productive assets and markets, and thus depend on their labour to earn a living. However, local labour markets offer little in the way of gainful and decent employment opportunities.
The unemployment rate in NTT is estimated at 30 per cent, which implies that a minimum of 1.4 million people do not have stable incomes and may therefore be more vulnerable to income shortfalls and food insecurity. The vulnerability in NTT is even greater when considering those who work for low wages and under precarious or hazardous conditions. Persistent food insecurity, inadequate nutrition levels, a lack of decent employment opportunities, and a limited application of decent work principles, are among the most serious obstacles preventing the NTT economy from becoming sufficiently vibrant and dynamic to sustain pathways of human, economic, and social development. This situation is of great concern for the Indonesian government, particularly as NTT has consistently underperformed relative to other areas of the country.
The objective of the programme is to promote food security and sustainable poverty reduction of rural communities in the most vulnerable and disadvantaged districts of Indonesia’s NTT province, through increased labour productivity, enhanced employment opportunities that comply with the principles of decent work, and expanding entrepreneurial opportunities in key agro-food value chains – particularly maize, seaweed and livestock – with high employment and income generation potential.
The programme will be implemented in four districts of NTT (namely, Belu, Kupang, East Sumba District, and Timor Tengah Selatan). As both food production and consumption are rooted in employment, decent work will increase food availability and provide adequate nutritional requirements by contributing to a sustainable increase in domestic production, boost people’s access to food through increased incomes, and contribute to improved food utilization through better diets and to stability of food security.
The selection of the three value chains – maize, livestock, and seaweed – as a focus of the programme was based on assessments carried out during the initial phase of the programme, taking into consideration the employment, income generation and productivity potential, as well as their impact on food security. The assessments included consultations and focus group discussions with local stakeholder and local and national governments.
Project StrategyDW4FS-NTT programme acknowledges that rural poverty is a multi-dimensional issue, with causes ranging from weak institutions and conflict to natural resource degradation and climate change. It will therefore pursue an integrated approach to address this multiplicity, so that members of local communities benefit from the improved functioning of key value chains and farming system, as a whole. In order to effectively reach the needs of the rural poor, the programme will focus particularly on protecting workers’ rights, as well as providing support, tailored to address the specific constraints faced by small-scale producers. The programme will put emphasis on promoting social and constructive dialogue among key stakeholders, thereby ensuring that the views and needs of key beneficiaries are reflected in policy formulation processes. Attention will also be paid to improving access to social protection, basic services, and infrastructure in local communities, especially among the most vulnerable. By promoting sustainable and climate smart agricultural practices, the programme will contribute directly to a more sustainable management of natural resources and therefore enhance resilience to the impacts of climate change in local communities.
The DW4FS&SRD programme will address decent work challenges and deficits along three selected agricultural value chains (i.e., maize, seaweed and livestock) in four districts with a view to enhancing productivity, competitiveness, and improving incomes and therefore livelihoods and food and nutrition security of farmers, agricultural workers and their families.
The programme will focus on four interrelated areas:
- Promotion of decent employment, improved working conditions, better access to social protection and a conducive environment for job creation in selected value chains through social dialogue;
- Promotion of sustainable agricultural practices, productivity and improvement of processing for the selected commodities, namely maize, seaweed and livestock;
- Improvement of entrepreneurship opportunities and access to finance, employability and skills in selected value chains and related sectors of the local economy;
- Promotion of better access to rural infrastructure and land improvement services.
Activities and interventions will be structured behind four core outputs to be achieved:Output 1:
A comprehensive strategy on DW4FS-NTT developed by the national and provincial policy makers and implemented for NTT to address decent work bottlenecks in selected agro-and aqua-based value chains, to enhance their impact on poverty reduction and food security, and to increase access to social protection for target community members
Returns of production, post-harvesting, processing, and marketing of selected commodities improved through the implementation of sustainable agricultural practices built on decent work principles and a labour productivity approach, in order to enhance the food security of rural communities.
Entrepreneurial capacity, employability, and the enhancement of skills of members of targeted communities. Opportunities are pursued by creating and improving businesses in the selected value chains, in related sectors of the local economy as well through opportunities for social businesses in the nutrition sphere.
Basic rural infrastructure, land improvement, and services for the targeted local communities as required for increasing productivity in the selected value chains and for reaching better food security.
- Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO);
- Ministry of Manpower and Transmigration;
- Ministry of Disadvantaged Areas (KPDT);
- National Development and Planning Agency (Bappenas);
- Provincial and District Development Planning Agencies (Bappeda);
- Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries;
- Indonesian Agency for Agricultural Research and Development of the Ministry of Agriculture (IAARD);
- Provincial Food Security and Extension Office (BKPP);
- Trade Unions; and
- Employers’ Organization.
For further information please contact:Mr Irham Saifuddin
ILO Country Office for Indonesia and Timor-Leste
Tel.: +62 21 391 3112
Fax.: +61 21 310 0766