The development of geoparks would have a multiplier effect: Minister of State

Nobody can do it but us.

Jakarta (ANTARA) – The development of geoparks into tourist destinations will have a multiplier effect on the community, said Minister for State Enterprises (SOEs) Erick Thohir at the virtual Indonesian National Geopark Conference here on Monday.

Not only would this create investment opportunities, but it would also open up new jobs in the creative industries that could improve the economy and people’s wellbeing, he said.

There are currently six geological sites in Indonesia that have been designated as global geoparks by the United Nations Education, Science and Culture Organization (UNESCO), he noted.

Still, there are dozens of such sites that could be expanded into internationally recognized geoparks, he said.

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“Therefore, state-owned companies, as development agents, strongly support the efforts of the government to maintain and develop geoparks,” noted the minister.

The development will be carried out in accordance with the principles of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), he said.

In addition, development will not only focus on the business sector but also pay attention to local wisdom to ensure the area is not overused, he added.

This would make it possible to protect and preserve the geological, biological and cultural riches of the area, Thohir said.

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“Let us advance and preserve the culture and nature of Indonesia. Nobody can do that except us, ”emphasized Thohir.

Earlier, Agus Suharyono, Deputy Deputy Social and Environmental Responsibility at the Ministry of State Enterprises, stated that the Ministry encourages companies to work together to maintain and develop geoparks as their social responsibility to the community.

He commended the state loan guarantee company PT Jamkrindo for helping develop geoparks by helping surrounding micro and small businesses improve, particularly at Ciletuh Geopark in Sukabumi District, West Java Province.

Collaboration is vital in developing geoparks as many aspects need to be improved in order to maximize the benefits of the sites to the community, he noted.

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