Cirebon, IO – The measures to curb COVID19 transmission, from physical distancing, lockdowns and activity restrictions all have deleterious consequences on economic activity. One of the many communities affected are the fisherfolk, including those in Bandengan village of Mundu District, Cirebon Regency, West Java, workers and families who have suffered a significant drop in income.
According to the Marine Affairs and Fisheries Ministry, most of the fishing in Indonesia is dominated by small-scale fishers, with more than 90 percent being coastal fisheries. Such small-scale enterprise plays a key role in providing local fishing families with livelihood and food security.
Most of the inhabitants of coastal Bandengan Village in Mundu District are fishing families. “There are many kinds of fishers here, from those operating big vessels with 10 to 15 crewmen, to smaller boat owners with only 2 to 3 crew,” explains Nursalim, Secretary at Bandengan Fisher Forum.
Bigger vessels are capable of hauling up to 10 tons of catch, the majority type being anchovies, mackerel and barracudas. Smaller vessels typically catch crabs, and can haul up to 100 kilograms at a time.
Nursalim says that it is costly for fishers once they sail, difficult to cover fuel, food, and other necessities. Costs may range from 200 to 800 thousand Rupiah a day. Apart from operational costs, fishers must be mindful of vessel seaworthiness, including the coatings on their hulls. Routine coating maintenance is vital to protect vessels from salt-water corrosion and mold.
In response to fishers’ needs, Nippon Paint Indonesia is providing assistance through its ‘Warnai Kehidupan’ CSR program, with a donation of 507 liters of Bee Brand 1000 and Copper Paint Anti-Fouling boat paints.
Nippon Paint Indonesia Area Sales Manager Topan Wijaksono says, “The donation and repainting initiative in Bandengan is driven by Nippon Paint Indonesia’s concern to keep these vessels well-maintained, seaworthy, and to attempt to extend their lifespan.”
Topan adds that the Bee Brand 1000 is a synthetic enamel paint that can be applied to various wooden and iron subtracts, whether interior or exterior. The solvent-based paint is easy to apply, and boasts a glossy finish. Bee Brand 1000 is also UV-resistant, long-lasting and dries faster. Meanwhile, Copper Paint Anti-Fouling types are intended for coating wooden and fishing vessels, yachts, and seagoing vessels.
Bandengan Secretary for Economic Development Adi Susanto proclaims this donation for fishers as very welcome. “With this assistance, we’re able to repaint 100 fishing vessels, big and small. Apart from hulls, we also replace the coating on the underside, which is vulnerable to mold. So, this donation from Nippon Paint is a big help in reducing maintenance and docking costs.”
Bandengan Village Head Nining Suningsih, better known as Kuwu Nining, states, “Almost 90% of the villagers are fisherfolk, and their livelihood depends on what they can take from the sea. During west monsoon periods, they seek a catch around Cirebon Regency. But peak catch usually only lasts one to two weeks. When it’s the east monsoon period, typically around the 7th to 10th months, they would sail around Jakarta and CIlacap. Therefore, this donation is very helpful in keeping their vessels safe during these trips.”
“We hope this support from Nippon Paint Indonesia will help stimulate economic activities for our 350 residents of Bandengan village in the future,” Topan adds.