The local coconut processing industry has urged the government to issue a moratorium. A moratorium on raw coconut exports must exist to meet the increasing demand for downstream industries. The Indonesian Coconut Processing Industry Association (HIPKI), said the local industry was facing a shortage of raw materials. This is due to the rise of coconut exports and the decline in plant productivity.
The industry needed a total of 14.6 billion coconuts in 2020. Meanwhile, the available supply was only 12 billion coconuts, according to the association’s data. Indonesia produces coconut milk, desiccated coconut, coconut oil, coconut butter, coconut cream, and coconut charcoal.
The coconut supply shortage has caused production to decrease by 30 to 50 percent over the last two years. A moratorium, he continued, would ensure an increase in foreign investment in the country, open more jobs and give the added value of US$5.8 billion to the economy. Trade Ministry’s director said the government would review the idea to ensure that the moratorium would benefit farmers and develop downstream industries.
Most coconut farmers protested the idea because the export price is better than the price offered by the processing industry. The export price for coconuts is Rp 2,700 per kilogram while the local price is listed between Rp 700 and Rp 1,700 per kilogram. They warned that an export moratorium would encourage farmers to convert their land into palm oil plantations.
Indonesia is the largest coconut exporter in the world. The value of coconut exports reached $1.13 billion last year with an export volume of 1.73 million tons. The three largest importers are the Netherlands, China, and the United States.