Jakarta: Agricultural sector's production continued to grow during 2021 followed by the sector's GDP growth that has been consistently positive since the COVID-19 pandemic struck in 2020, Agriculture Minister Syahrul Yasin Limpo stated.
"The agricultural sector makes a positive contribution to the national economic growth and even amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The formulation of strategies and programs amid the pandemic has impacted the GDP growth in the agricultural sector (in such way that) it has consistently grown positively since 2020 and is sustainable until 2021," the minister noted during a meeting with Commission IV of the House of Representatives here on Monday.
The minister stated that the GDP of the agricultural sector grew by 16.24 percent in the second quarter of 2020, while other sectors had recorded negative growth owing to the pandemic. He further pointed out that in the first quarter of 2021, the agricultural sector had contributed 2.95 percent to national economic growth.
"In the first quarter of 2021, the GDP of the agricultural sector grew 2.95 percent year-on-year. In the third quarter of 2021, it also grew 1.31 percent as compared to that in 2020," he remarked.
Limpo also listed the achievements that defined the positive growth in exports of agricultural products during 2021. The cumulative export value for the January-December 2021 period reached Rp625.04 trillion, an increase of 38.608 percent as compared to 2020 when the figure was capped at Rp451.77 trillion.
The minister additionally noted that the farmer's exchange rate also continued to improve, with the latest data showing that as of December 2021, it had reached 108.34 percent, the highest in the last two years. The lowest rate was recorded in May 2020, reaching 99.47 percent.
Limpo noted a spike in the production of the agricultural sector's main commodities in 2021, such as rice production, which reached 55.27 tons of dry milled grain, an increase of 1.13 percent as compared to 54.65 million tons of dry milled grain in 2020.
An increase was also recorded in corn production that reached 23.04 million tons, rising 0.52 percent as compared to last year; onion production, 1.93 million tons, an increase of 6.63 percent; cocoa production, 750 thousand tons, a 1.25-percent increase; coffee, 775 thousand tons, an increase of 1.71 percent; sugarcane production, 2.42 million tons, up by 13.602 percent; and chicken meat production up to 3.42 million tons, an increase by 6.5 percent.
"However, production of several other food products, such as of chili, coconut, and beef as well as buffalo, had decreased, although not significantly," Limpo concluded.