Palangka Raya (ANTARA News) - Dutch Development Cooperation Minister Bert Koenders and his entourage arrived in Central Kalimantan`s provincial capital of Palangka Raya on Saturday to discuss matters related to deforestation, peat land and forest fires in the province with Governor Teras Narang.
"Kalimantan has serious problems related with deforestation, peat lands and forest fires, and thus we have offered our cooperation assistance to deal with them," Koenders said after being given a traditional welcome here.
Accompanied by a 16-member delegation, Koenders said he would continue to monitor developments in the solution of the forestry problem in Central Kalimantan.
The Dutch minister was visiting Central Kalimantan on his way to Bali to attend the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) conference.
Forest and peat lands in Kalimantan, according to Koenders, were not only important for Indonesia but also for the rest of the world, and therefore they had to be managed well.
He said the Dutch government had extended financial assistance of around 2 million euro for a master plan to manage one-million hectares of peat land to prevent floods and forest fires.
In addition, he said, the Netherlands had also provided several non-governmental organizations from the two countries with 5 million euro to cooperate in empowering Central Kalimantan people living around forests.
"The master plan is important for natural preservation and biodiversity. Therefore, we want to ensure that the people in Central Kalimantan will lead a better life and benefit from forests," Koenders said.
Meanwhile, Governor Teras Narang said the assistance from the Dutch government for the peat land rehabilitation project would end in the middle of next year.