In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic which has had a huge impact on micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), a breakthrough is needed to help MSMEs survive, so that they continue to contribute to the national economic recovery through job creation.
One of the breakthroughs is how MSMEs can innovate, so that in the midst of weakening demand in the domestic market, they can seek new market sources abroad through exports. With the support of the Desa Sejahtera Astra (DSA) program, a number of MSMEs in 194 DSA have succeeded in innovating, so that around 74 of their local products have penetrated the export market and are marketed abroad.
Currently, there are 20 villages that are members of the Indragiri Hilir DSA, Riau, exporting 26 tons of copra per month to markets in India, Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates. A total of 20 villages that are members of the Kendal DSA program, Central Java, export 10 tons of essential oils per month to markets in the United States, China, Belgium, France, and El Salvador. In addition, 15 tons of organic rice per month have been exported by DSA Al Barokah Susukan, Semarang, with the aim of exporting markets in Jordan and Qatar.
“Astra's entry into our village has had a positive impact because Astra provides a way to improve our people's economy. In addition to increasing income, the target market is expanding, the number of villages exposed to the DSA program also increases. Initially there were only four villages, now it has grown to 20 villages,” said Mustofa as the Head of the Al Barokah Susukan DSA Farmers Group.
From eastern Indonesia, DSA Lombok and Bima exported 2,000 pieces of processed sorghum to Taiwan and Southeast Asia and DSA Buton which exported 20 tons of cashews to Vietnam. These stories are just some of the successes of the 74 products that have been exported from MSMEs in 194 DSA which have managed to score a transaction value of up to Rp3.4 billion throughout 2021.
The success of encouraging MSMEs in DSA is part of the assistance and guidance carried out by Astra in collaboration with various parties, such as the Ministry of Cooperatives & Small and Medium Enterprises of the Republic of Indonesia, the Ministry of Villages for Development of Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration of the Republic of Indonesia, and the Ministry of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia.
Through a webinar at the Entrepreneurship Festival with the theme "Advancing with the Products of the Nation's Children" held by Astra and the three ministries today (28/7), the Minister of Cooperatives and Small and Medium Enterprises of the Republic of Indonesia Teten Masduki, Deputy Minister of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia Jerry Sambuaga, and Director General of Economic Development and Investment in Villages, Disadvantaged Regions, and Transmigration (PEID) of the Ministry of Villages, Development of Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration of the Republic of Indonesia Harlina Sulistyorini.
In his remarks, the Indonesian Minister of Cooperatives and SMEs Teten Masduki said that Indonesia's entrepreneurship ratio still reached 3.47% compared to the ratio of countries in Asean such as Thailand 4.26%, Malaysia 4.74%, Singapore 8.76%, and developed countries. another 12%.
"To become a developed country, an entrepreneurial ratio of at least 4% is required. To achieve the minimum ratio target, it requires support from all stakeholders through synergy and collaboration. We express our gratitude and highest appreciation to Astra for always being present and side by side constantly with the government in fostering and growing MSMEs," he said.
“In line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), namely to increase sustainable economic growth and reduce poverty in Indonesia and the world, Astra through the implementation of the social contribution pillar of entrepreneurship has carried out a series of approach programs that include supply chain-based entrepreneurship by fostering MSMEs that become a chain of business. Astra Group suppliers in various regions, regional-based entrepreneurship by fostering MSMEs around Astra Group company installations throughout Indonesia, and community-based entrepreneurship by fostering MSMEs who are members of the Astra-assisted entrepreneurial community," said Astra Director Gita Tiffani Boer.
In the event, the signing of export cooperation between Astra and the Ministry of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia regarding the commitment to the success of export-ready villages carried out by the Director General of National Export Development of the Ministry of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia Didi Sumedi, Director of KSPE of the Ministry of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia Marolop Nainggolan, Chief of Corporate Affairs of Astra Riza Deliansyah and Head of ESR Astra Diah Suran Febrianti and witnessed by the Deputy Minister of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia Jerry Sambuaga and Director of Astra Gita Tiffani Boer.
Astra adds 175 Astra Prosperous Villages and 17 Astra Berseri Villages
In an effort to expand its network, Astra added 175 Astra Prosperous Villages and 17 Astra Berseri Villages in the new target locations, bringing the total to 930 DSA and 133 KBA spread across 142 Regencies and 34 Provinces. Astra's commitment to fostering the new location was realized by the signing of the Getting Commitment by the Director General of Economic Development and Investment in Villages, Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration (PEID) of the Ministry of Villages PDTT of the Republic of Indonesia, Harlina Sulistyorini and Head of ESR Astra Diah Suran Febrianti together with the Regents Astra Sejahtera Village is new and expanded.
The addition of Astra Sejahtera Village and Astra Berseri Village is expected to further expand the number of MSMEs and beneficiaries fostered by Astra. To date, Astra has fostered more than 14,700 MSMEs with the beneficiary community reaching more than 195,900 people.
The Entrepreneurship Festival, which has been held for four consecutive years, also presents an Innovation Talk with resource persons who share experiences. They are Content Creator Jerome Polin, CEO of Menantea Jehian Panangian Sijabat, Founder of the Community Can Export Julio, and recipient of the 2016 SATU Indonesia Awards for Entrepreneurship Ahmad Sobirin who shared stories about the business world he was involved in and efforts to maintain business existence.
Astra's passion for advancing the nation's MSME industry is in line with the SDGs and Astra's ideals for Prosperity with the Nation.