Jakarta. Indonesia has secured a $600 million loan from the Manila-based Asian Development Bank, or ADB, to improve national irrigation systems in a bid to achieve food security and reduce nationwide poverty.
According to a Public Works and Housing Ministry estimate, nearly 45 percent of the country's irrigation systems either work at sub-par capacities or do not function at all, ultimately undermining national crop production.
Under the ADB's "Integrated Participatory Development and Management of Irrigation Program," the new loan will be distributed to upgrade current irrigation systems, improve maintenance and increase local farmer participation in at least 74 districts across the archipelago.
"The program will help farmers in these districts by improving water delivery," ADB water resources specialist Eric Quincieu said in a statement on Friday (19/05).
"The aim is to improve the incomes and livelihoods of these rural communities, as well as to help the country achieve a sustainable and more productive irrigated agriculture."
ADB has identified future water shortage crises as major causes of concern in the Asia Pacific region over the next three decades.
The Manila-based lender estimates that the region will use 55 percent more water by 2050 compared to current rates due to rising demands from the agriculture sector and personal households.