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Luhut: Rp20tn Earmarked for Prabowo's Free Lunch Program in Initial Phase

21 June 2024 16:26 WIB

TEMPO.CO, JakartaCoordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, disclosed that the budget for Prabowo-Gibran’s free lunch program will be allocated gradually. In the initial stage, it is expected to be Rp20 trillion.

Luhut said the program was being discussed together with President-elect Prabowo Subianto's team.

“People say it will require Rp250 trillion. That’s not true. We will start with maybe Rp20 trillion,” he said in a MINDialogue discussion in Jakarta on Thursday, June 20, which was broadcast via CNBCTV’s YouTube channel. 

Acknowledging that many parties are concerned that the state budget (APBN) won't be able to cover the cost of this program, he emphasized that there won't be a problem because the program will be implemented in stages.

Based on the existing scenario, he mentioned that Indonesia could still allocate a budget of Rp612 trillion with a budget deficit of 2.5 percent, which would allow for the development of the Trans Sumatra Toll Road and the new capital of Nusantara or IKN project in East Kalimantan.

“So what's the problem? We'll do it,” he said optimistically.

Luhut pointed out that similar programs have been implemented in 93 countries. Therefore, he said that the program being promoted by Prabowo-Gibran with a jumbo budget was nothing strange.

“I think it's very good. Many children who have never eaten meat or eggs can have them through this program,” he claimed.

Luhut further encouraged the public not to worry. “We don't need to worry. [The free lunch program will run smoothly] as long as we manage it well, as long as we reduce leaks. With digitalization, we will be able to reduce those leaks significantly.”

ANNISA FEBIOLA

Editor's Choice: Prabowo-Gibran Govt's Debt Burden Estimated at Rp1,300tn per Year: IDEAS

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