Tokyo, – During a meeting with the Indonesian diaspora at the Ambassador’s House of the Republic of Indonesia (KBRI) Tokyo, Japan, on Monday (26/09/2022), Vice President KH Ma’ruf Amin received information on efforts to empower MSMEs by Indonesian citizens in Japan through the Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) Center or UKM Center at the Indonesian Embassy in Tokyo.

The UKM Center was facilitated by the Indonesian Embassy in Tokyo and supported by the synergy of banking and SOE offices in the Tokyo branch to assist Indonesian business actors, especially Diaspora SMEs in Japan, in developing their businesses.

For this reason, the Vice President highly appreciated the presence of the UKM Center, including the Halal Vending Machine owned by Indonesian citizens in Japan, which was very useful for developing SMEs for the Indonesian diaspora in Japan.

“MSMEs during the Covid-19 pandemic have become a bedrock for the Indonesian economy, so that our economy can still be controlled, in contrast to countries that do not have MSMEs,” said the Vice President in front of the Indonesian diaspora.

Furthermore, the Vice President said that MSMEs could be relied on to support the economy, especially if their products were of export standard and were well curated so that they were able to penetrate the international market.

“This is also a kind of effort to revitalize the regional economy to become a model for developing MSMEs,” he explained.

This pattern of MSME development, said the Vice President, could encourage the growth of regional products, such as handicraft products.

“Incidentally, my wife is the General Chair of the National Crafts Council (Dekranas) and is currently holding an exhibition at the Jakarta Convention Center (JCC) Jakarta,” he added.

Regarding the existence of the SME Center Tokyo, the Vice President said that he fully supports this MSME development model and would coordinate with relevant ministries/agencies.

“I will follow up through the relevant ministries and institutions,” he said.

In addition to meeting with the Indonesian diaspora in Japan, today the Vice President would also pay a courtesy visit to Japanese Prime Minister (PM) Fumio Kishida at the Akasaka Palace.

To the Indonesian diaspora, the Vice President said that he would take advantage of the meeting with the Japanese PM, one of which was to discuss employment issues.

“I will reconfirm that Indonesia is ready to meet the needs of skilled workers for the industry in Japan,” he said.

In addition, the Vice President would also encourage the opening of Indonesian workers in various new fields such as tourism.

“We will also continue to support efforts to increase our human resources, namely to be more competitive compared to workers from other countries. This is what I will convey to PM Kishida later,” he said.

Finally, the Vice President said that the current government continued to encourage the improvement of human resources through the provision of scholarships to continue studies both at home and abroad.

“Increasing human resources is indeed one of the priorities because the key to our success and prosperity is human resources both at home and abroad,” he said.

According to the Vice President, the current government continued to strengthen the Education Fund Management Institute (LPDP), especially to support students studying at leading universities abroad.

“This is indeed the government’s commitment to preparing superb human resources who can compete globally,” he concluded. (DMA/LHS-BPMI Setwapres)