Supporting small businesses in Indonesia

June 7, 2022

East Jakarta City – Through the ACTION Project (Active Citizens Building Solidarity and Resilience in Response to Covid-19), the European Union provides funding support to the Association for Advancement of Small Business (PUPUK). With the funding, PUPUK carries out a series of social and economic recovery activities for vulnerable communities, specifically targeting SMEs (Small and Medium Enterprises) to restore and advance their businesses, which were severely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as to help new entrepreneurs start and grow.

PUPUK developed a business and entrepreneurship module, conducted capacity building training for local SME owners, and facilitated and assisted 100 SMEs in making and developing their business proposals. These interventions were followed by providing in-kind support packages for 100 SMEs in East Jakarta City, Bogor Regency, Yogyakarta City, Makassar City and East Lombok Regency. The packages consist of raw materials and tools for production such as cooking appliances for food processing business, crafting tools for souvenir business, and sewing machines for tailor business.

A symbolic handover

At the beginning of June, the partners of the ACTION project symbolically handed over tools and production materials simultaneously in the five project areas. During the hybrid event (online and offline), the Minister of Cooperatives and Small and Medium Enterprises, local government authorities of East Jakarta City, Bogor Regency, Yogyakarta City, Makassar City and East Lombok Regency, as well as local SMEs assisted by Project ACTION were present.

The assistance in the form of in-kind packages is expected to stimulate and increase production, sales and income of local SMEs. It will empower SME owners in implementing their business plan to sustain their livelihood and increase their family and local communities resilient to recover after the economic crisis caused by the pandemic.

“This project is very meaningful to accelerate the development of SMEs and the regional economy. In the upcoming days, we also hope local stakeholders can be more active in assisting local SMEs to ensure sustainability after the ACTION Project will end,” said Rieta R. Dewi as Chair of the PUPUK Indonesia Management Board.

Joining forces

Michel Farkas, a.i. Executive Director of Hivos said, “The work we’re highlighting today is an example of Hivos’ multi-actor initiative approach. The ACTION project’s consortium members are forging collaborations with entrepreneurs, local governments and communities. I hope PUPUK’s work will assist these entrepreneurs and the communities they serve on the way to a lasting post-pandemic economic improvement.”

By implementing recovery programs that support buying and selling locally and regionally, authorities can help scale up the work of PUPUK. Members of the ACTION consortium therefore invited representatives of local governments, from the village-level to regional authorities – to join their mission.

About the European Union

The European Union (EU) is an economic and political union of 27 member states with a population of 470 million. Together, the EU has built a zone of stability, democracy and sustainable development whilst maintaining cultural diversity, tolerance and individual freedom. In 2012, the EU was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for advancing the goals of peace, reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe. The EU is the world’s largest trading bloc, and the world’s largest source and destination of foreign direct investment. Collectively, the EU and its Member States are the largest donor of Official Development Assistance (ODA), providing more than half of ODA globally.

For more information about the EU and its relations and cooperation with Indonesia see Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Youtube.

To support partner countries in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic and its consequences, the EU has launched the “Team Europe” approach. The objective of the Team Europe approach is to combine resources from the EU, its member states and European financial institutions. Team Europe has mobilized around €200 million (IDR 3.5 trillion) in grants and loans to support Indonesia. €6 million (IDR 108.5 billion) in grants are dedicated to support civil society organizations to address the health and socioeconomic impact of the Covid-19 crisis in Indonesia. Team Europa is investing over €3 billion to help secure 1.8 billion doses of vaccines for 92 low and middle-income countries. Indonesia is one of the beneficiary countries.

About the ACTION project

The EU-funded ACTION project aims at increasing the participation of civil society organizations in preventing and mitigating the risks caused by the Covid-19 crisis and ensuring that vulnerable and marginalized groups in Indonesia have equal access to social and economic recovery programs. This two-year project is implemented in 15 sub-districts and 40 villages in DKI Jakarta, West Java, Yogyakarta, West Nusa Tenggara, and South Sulawesi in two phases. The first phase will focus on the initial response to the pandemic, while the second phase will help to mitigate the social and economic impacts. Women, people with disabilities (PWD), elderly, youth, SME entrepreneurs, and CSOs will directly benefit from the project.

The ACTION project is coordinated by Hivos and implemented jointly with:

Center for Indonesia’s Strategic Development Initiatives (CISDI)

CISDI is a civil society organization that supports the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through health development and involvement of youth in health development. CISDI conducts a study of issues based on experience in managing primary healthcare reinforcement programs in suburban areas as well as outermost, frontier, and the least developed areas, research and analysis of health policies, social change campaigns, and its involvement in health diplomacy at the national and international levels.

Alternative Education Circle for Women (KAPAL Perempuan)

The establishment of KAPAL Perempuan is to build women and social movement that are capable of realizing social justice, gender equality and justice as well as peace in the public and private sphere. KAPAL focuses on strengthening women’s leadership through feminist critical education, organizing and evidence-based advocacy, especially for women at the grassroots.


Pamflet is a human rights based organization founded and organized by young people. We are focusing on youth movement, as well as encouraging new initiatives for change in social and cultural areas, especially related to human rights issues, politics and democracy, and gender and sexual diversity. We support the youth movement in Indonesia and manage the knowledge on youth through developing centers of information, documentation and organizing capacity building for young people.

The Association for Advancement of Small Business (PUPUK)

PUPUK was established from initiation program of Small Industries Advancement (PIK) – West Java Chamber of Commerce (KADIN Jawa Barat), and the initiatives of three professional groups of Entrepreneurs, Academics, and Economic Activist began in 1979 in cooperation with a German institution, Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung (FNSt). In 1988 declared independently with the goals to expanding the region scope and more comprehensive achievements and institutionalized into PUPUK, and was legalized as an Association. PUPUK provides technical assistance to empower small businesses and strengthen the ecosystem to stimulate new strong entrepreneurs in facing economic competition.

Advocacy Center for Disability, Women and Children (SAPDA)

SAPDA Foundation, stands for Advocacy Center for Disability, Women and Children, based in Yogyakarta, and established in July, 2005, is a non-governmental organization (NGO) with a vision of “the struggle to bring about change, justice, freedom, welfare & equality to fulfil and protect the rights of women, persons with disabilities and children in an inclusive society on the basis of equal human rights.

For more information, please contact:

Yesua YDK Pellokila | ACTION Project Manager, Hivos |