Indonesia inviting foreign investment to develop seaweed potential

Denpasar, Bali (Antara News) - Indonesia has invited Danish, German, Japanese, South Korean and Southeast Asian businessmen to invest in the devlopment of the country`s seaweed potential, Marine and Fisheries Minister Freddy Numberi said.

The presence of foreign investors in the national seaweed industry would hopefully increase the country`s production and the capacity of its seaweed-based food industry, he said after the opening of an international forum on and exhibition of seaweed business here Tuesday.

"Indonesia has a seaweed development potential of 222,180 hectares but only 20 percent or 1,110,900 hectares of the potential has so far been realized with Rp68.2 million spent on development of every heactare," he said.

The country produced 1,079,850 tons of seaweed in 2006, up from 910,636 tons in 2005.

Numberi expressed hope Indonesia could produce at least 1.9 million tons of seaweed in 2009.

"Therefore, Indonesia needs to develop 25,000 more hectares and Rp800 billion in fresh investment to reach the target in 2009," he told the three-day expo which was being participated in by 150 businessmen from foreign countries.

Brunei Darussalam, Chinese and Malaysian entrepreneurs are also taking part in the expo.

Indonesia has already set up seaweed developing centers in 18 locations in Sumatra, Java, Bali, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, Maluku and Papua. (*)
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