Indonesia: Government prepares economic package for peat restoration

Antara 27 Sep 16;

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Indonesian government is preparing a special economic policy containing investment packages specially aimed at supporting peat land restoration currently underway int he country.

"We would invite the ministry of finance, the Capital Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM)and the President for the discussion of the economic packages," head of Peat Restoration Agency (BRG) , Nazir Foead, said when explaining the results of the meeting on Building Investment Partnership for Peatland Conservation, Restoration and Development at the Indonesia High Level Dialog New York at the BRG office here on Monday.

He said the economic package could be put in the form of green investment to maintain existing forests and peat land through culture technical method that fits with conservation protection principles.

Based on BRG calculation there are four million hectares of cultured peat land that have been damaged and so need different treatment and supervision to improve their hydrological resilience.

"We will invite philanthropists to help restore the land," he said.

Based on the results of a meeting in New York, he said, many parties have expressed interest to invest on peat land restoration although their main reason is carbon trading.

"I believe some will also be interested in developing coconut or sago plantations or other plants that fit with peat land," he said.

He said it was found during the meeting that they had no worries over the political risk for investing in peat land in view of the governments commitment to restoration and the presence of BRG as well as Government Regulation Number 71 of 2014 on pear land ecosystem management and protection whose revision will be signed by the President in the next week.

BRGs deputy for planning and cooperation Budi Wardhana said the economic package would be produced immediately and now preparations have been made with regard to investment in the form of selecting plants that would be fit for development in peat land.

It is hoped in the 22nd Conference of Parties in Marakesh, Morroco, early in November, the investment packages will have been able to be introduced, he said.(*)

Peatland Restoration Agency in Search of Foreign Investors
Riva Dessthania Suastha Jakarta Globe 27 Sep 16;

Jakarta. Indonesia will need the help of foreign investors to restore its peatlands, the Peatland Restoration Agency says as it calls for the recovery of over 2 million hectares of peatlands in Sumatra, Kalimantan and Papua.

"Some foreign organizations have expressed interests in aiding us with peatland restoration. We will never meet our target if we only rely on [palm oil] corporations," Peatland Restoration Agency chief Nazir Foead told CNN Indonesia on Monday (26/09).

According to Nazir, peatland restoration requires a close cooperation between the government, investors and farmers, as its sustainability relies on following existing programs on preservation, rehabilitation and land use.

Nazir said the agency has identified a host of potential donors including Tom Steyer, the Packard Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation, Goldman Sachs, the GoodEnergies Foundation and the Climate and Land Use Alliance.

The Packard Foundation and the Climate and Land Use Alliance have already declared they will donate $15 million.

"International investors want to help with restoring Indonesia's peatlands to reduce carbon emissions," Nazir said.

The World Bank estimates the initial cost for rehabilitating the 2 million hectares will be around Rp 27 trillion ($2 billion). The government plans to get the full amount in five years.

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