Where does Perinus fit in Indonesia's fishing industry?
Indonesia has the second-largest marine industry in the world. In the past, illegal fishing decimated the fisheries industry in Indonesia. The Philippines, Thailand, and China had all been caught illegally fishing in Indonesia. Our fisheries minister has implemented a successful enforcement policy of targeting illegal vessels. That, combined with regulations on nets and gross hauls, has supported catches enormously. In Indonesia, we only have two state-owned fishing companies: Perinus and Perum Perikanan Indonesia. The companies manage different parts of the archipelago, and we manage the east. The diamonds of the nation's fisheries are in the east, close to Timor. The new regulations present a great opportunity for us. In fact, we have grown 200% in revenue in 2017 alone, and profits have grown 109%. This means that we can now invest in new construction projects, ships, and cold storage. In 2017, we prepared the infrastructure for increased stocks and built new cold storage facilities to support further expansion.
How do you support local fishermen, who have historically been an important engine of economic growth?
We are in cooperation with the fishermen and purchase from them. We also give them gas and ice in return for a commitment that their fish are sold to us. This arrangement is a win-win situation, since we effectively are co-investors and provide the capital for their operations. We cover their expenses and provide them with a steady income based on their catch, which has gone up. We also have our own fleet, which will expand in 2018.
What are the local and international markets for Indonesian catch, and how will you expand this?
In Thailand, 70% of the fishery industry is sourced from Indonesia. They need Indonesian fish, and the entire region to some degree depends on us. We do not worry about the market as every day many companies contact Perinus with their demands for our product. 2018 is a good opportunity, but the issue with the fishery industry now is small trawlers, which people are still using in Java. In December 2017, this style of fishing was stopped, but fishermen still use small trawlers out of habit. They are bad for the fish population, and we have to change the habits, as there are many alternatives.
What are your main focuses and strategy for the company?
In 2018, we will focus on catching, of course, and, second, we will focus on how to prepare infrastructure in our branches. We are also developing aquaculture projects in cooperation with a company from Norway. We have already built the aquaculture facility in Sabang, Karmon, and Panandara using Norwegian technology for sea bass. Norwegian salmon is produced using aquaculture, and with new technology, we can look at the fish with cameras, feed them with computers, and ensure the highest levels of productivity. We are still waiting for the first harvest, as these are the first aquaculture projects with the new technology.
Will you expand your current fleet in 2018, and what are your growth projections?
We will buy new boats, and we will still buy from fishermen. Every month we prepare to buy IDR150 billion from the fishermen for trading purposes, but we are also investing in new boats, infrastructure, cold storage, and processing. In 2017, we have built USD20 million worth of infrastructure to improve our branch. In 2018, we will invest USD30 million but also prepare USD15 million per month only for trading. We received our target from our minister of USD100 million in revenue in 2018. We are currently at USD50 million; hence, we plan to double our growth again this year. As of now, we are still focused on increasing the revenue and size of the company, thus we will remain a state-owned company. After this, we will think about privatization and an IPO.