Wilmar secures 200,000 hectares of land in Merauke Food Estate for sugar plant

Indonesia Today |  2 September 2010

Photo: Charles Grenville

Singapore-based Wilmar International Ltd is one step closer to develop US$2 billion sugar estate and sugar mills in Merauke, Papua after the company secured permit to develop 200,000 hectares of land in Merauke Food Estate.

“We have been offered location permit of 200,000 hectares of land. We’re currently assessing the quality of the land,” Director Operation for Indonesian operation of Wilmar International, Hendri Saksti, was quoted by detik.com as saying on Wednesday night.

Hendri said at present the company is conducting laboratory test on the quality of the soil, land structure, type of business as well as climate. He noted it takes 1-2 years before ensuring that the land is suitable for developing sugar cane plantation.

The government in August 2010 launched the food estate project in Merauke Papua. The government has invited investors to invest in variety of agriculture products in the food estate such as paddy, sugar cane, etc. The project was aimed at strengthening the country’s food security.

Wilmar announced in June over its interest to develop sugar crop in Papua. M.P. Tunggaor, commissioner of PT Wilmar Nabati, a subsidiary of Wilmar International, said at that time that the company was in talks with various government agencies including Industry Ministry and National Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM). He however noted that the problem in developing such project is inadequate infrastructure.


Wilmar Begins Feasibility Study on Kinds of Sugar Cane in Merauke

TempoInteractive | 2 September, 2010

Wilmar Indonesia has begun a feasibility study to build a sugar factory in Merauke, Papua. “We are carrying out laboratory tests to determine the kinds of sugar cane that are suitable to be planted in Papua," said the President Director of Wilmar Indonesia, Hendri Saksti, yesterday.

According to Hendri, Wilma is employing experts from Australia for the feasibility test. “The test will be completed in two years,” he said. Wilmar will invest US$2 billion in the project.

Wilmar is one of the investors planning to cultivate sugar cane plantation and build a sugar factory in Merauke.

Besides Wilmar, there are a few other investors wanting to build a sugarplant in Merauke, such as Murdaya Po, Medco, Rajawali Nusantara indonesia (RNI) and Sinarmas.

According to Hendri, the government has allocated 200.000 hectares of land in Merauke to Wilmar. “The factory capacity will be adjusted to the production of the plantation,” he said.


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