Cablegate: Food Security Opportunity for Presidential Visit
DE RUEHJA #0149 0340341
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 030341Z FEB 10
FM AMEMBASSY JAKARTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4412
INFO RUEHRC/DEPT OF AGRICULTURE USD FAS WASHINGTON DC
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHINGTON DC
RUEHJS/AMCONSUL SURABAYA 2632
UNCLAS JAKARTA 000149
STATE FOR EEB/TPP/MTAA/ABT SZYMANSKI AND BOBO
STATE ALSO FOR EAP/MTS AND EEB/CBA
USDA/FAS/OCRA HALE, HIGGISTON, RADLER
USDA/FAS/OGA HOUSE, DWYER, ROCKE
USDA/FAS/OSTA BLUM, MACKE, BERMAN, WETZEL
USDA/FAS/OCBD SHEIKH, KREAMER, GROVES
COMMERCE FOR 4430/NADJMI
STATE PASS TO USTR WEISEL, EHLERS
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON EAGR ETRD ID
SUBJECT: FOOD SECURITY OPPORTUNITY FOR PRESIDENTIAL VISIT
REF: (A) 09 JAKARTA 2031; (B) 09 JAKARTA 1473; (C) 10 JAKARTA 62
1. We have an opportunity to develop a real U.S.-Indonesia
Partnership on Agricultural Innovation and Investment as part of
joint efforts on food security for President Obama's planned March
visit. President Yudhoyono has publicly stated interest for a U.S.
partnership on food security. Indonesians value cooperation with
the United States and want a stronger partnership. They are
considering regulatory changes that would facilitate greater use of
biotech crops and agricultural investment, an area where U.S.
companies are ready to compete. We need quick Washington action to
seize this opening.
2. To meet these goals before a POTUS visit, Post requests the
-- Include Indonesia in the Food Security Initiative (Ref A).
-- Approve funding for a marine research center (Ref B), to enable
Indonesia to better manage its fisheries and ensure the continued
supply of a vital food source.
-- Approve funding for Post's proposed biotech workshop as part of
joint food security efforts (Ref C), so that it can be held by late
February. Identify a high-level Washington visitor who could
participate in the workshop.
Food Security Goals
3. Food Security Initiative: Almost half of Indonesia's 240 million
population lives on less than $2 a day. Thirteen million children
are malnourished. Most poor families live in rural areas and depend
on the agriculture sector for family incomes. The best
opportunities for raising rural family incomes, reducing poverty,
and increasing food security are in small-holder cash commodities:
horticulture and fish for the demanding urban market, and coffee and
cocoa for export. To revitalize Indonesia's rural agriculture
sector, the U.S. and other donors need to return to substantial,
steady investment in the rural agricultural sector, giving first
priority to agriculture and fisheries institutions for teaching,
research and extension.
4. Fisheries Center: Sustainable fisheries are critical to
Indonesian food security. 60% of Indonesian's protein comes from
fish. The Embassy has promoted the concept of a Center for
Sustainable Ocean Fisheries to encourage fisheries research,
fisheries management, and monitoring. Such a center would focus on
healthy, sustainable ocean fisheries, but would also address climate
change impacts on oceans and coastal communities and the importance
of climate change adaptation.
5. Biotech and Investment Workshop: The United States and Indonesia
would like to jointly host a workshop on Agricultural Innovation and
Investment the last week in February. The workshop will generate an
action plan to further agricultural innovation and investment,
including biotech crops, as part of efforts to enhance food
security, for senior policy review by both parties. That agenda
will focus on broad bilateral policy coordination to stimulate
private sector engagement and collaboration between the United
States and Indonesia to promote agricultural innovation and
investment. U/S Otero will be in Jakarta that week, and we would
welcome her participation.