State finance aims for women's empowerment in MSMEs

id sri mulyani,finance minister,empowering women msme,LPEI,state budget utilization

State finance aims for women's empowerment in MSMEs

Finance Minister Sri Mulyani at a 'Women in Financial Technology' forum in Jakarta, Thursday, August 11, 2022. (ANTARA/Sanya Dinda/rst)

Jakarta (ANTARA) - Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati stated that one of the state budget functions was to support women's empowerment, especially those working in the micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) sector.

"We implemented budget tagging in our state budget by marking budgeting in all ministries and institutions for gender empowerment and strengthening by providing roles and contributions for women to contribute," Indrawati noted at a virtual Mother's Day talk show titled "Empowered Women, Advanced Indonesia" held by her ministry here on Thursday.

The minister stated that MSMEs, which contributed as much as 61.1 percent of the state revenue in 2021, with a total of 64 million MSMEs, of which some 37 million or 64.5 percent were managed by women.

Hence, Indrawati remarked that the state budget provided support to women by providing People's Business Credit (KUR) reaching a total of Rp370 trillion, with very low interest and mostly utilized by MSMEs.

"We also have instruments, such as state equity participation (PMN) and state-owned pawnshop chain (Pegadaian) with the Prosperous Family Economic Development (Mekaar) Program. It also uses state money," the minister stated.

In addition, Indrawati remarked that the country supported financing for ultra-micro MSMEs called Umi, with low credit limit under Rp10 million, with a relatively short term or less than 52 weeks.

Collaboration between the Umi program and the Indonesian Export Financing Agency (LPEI) aims to help businesses penetrate domestic and foreign markets through coaching and training, she remarked.

Indrawati noted that recently, the government, through the Directorate General of Treasury throughout Indonesia, carried out MSME Financing Empowerment (U-Fine) branding that provided a series of coaching activities to MSMEs. The program aims to educate MSMEs regarding financial inclusion and encourage upscale in debtors of government financing programs.

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The minister said several women were becoming economic actors without being equipped with experience, skills, and networking that will, in fact, be beneficial for their business development. Hence, various empowerment activities, including access to capital, are crucial.

"This is where the state is present using state financial instruments as well as through institutions that are given special assignments, such as Indonesia Eximbank (LPEI), to encourage exports, Umi to provide access to credit and empower coaching to MSMEs in collaboration with other institutions and through the state budget in the form of interest subsidy," she remarked.