JAKARTA, NNC - The government of President Joko Widodo and Vice President Jusuf Kalla raised the Village Fund budget allocation in 2019 by IDR73 trillion from the previous IDR60 trillion in 2018.
Responding to this, the Minister of Villages, Development of Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration (Mendes PDTT) Eko Putro Sandjojo said that the Village Funds have been prioritized for the development of village infrastructure, now it needs to be transferred in its utilization for village economic empowerment. He said infrastructure development was very massive.
"There are still a number of villages that are still building infrastructure because they still need them. But, right now, the village has begun to build its economic empowerment, for example making tourist villages, making village-owned enterprises (BUMDes), managing waste banks, and others. Hopefully, there can be more accelerated economic growth in villages, after infrastructure development," said Eko Putro Sandjojo after a working meeting at the Coordinating Ministry for Economic Affairs, Jakarta, Friday (8/24/2018).
Minister Eko further said, Village Funds are one of the factors that drive the decline in poverty rates in the period March 2017 to March 2018 reaching 1.82 million people.
"Most interestingly, out of the 1.82 million poor people, there are 1.2 million poor people in the village, while in the city only 520 thousand to 580 thousand poor people have fallen. If the acceleration of poverty reduction in this village is maintained, mathematically in the next seven years, the number of poor people in the villages will be smaller than the number of poor people in the city. So we will continue to maintain it," he said.