Indonesia passes law to relocate its capital

According to details, the Indonesian government had decided to move its capital from Jakarta to the forested island of Borneo on the east coast. The proposed location is near the regional cities of Balkapapan and Samaritan where the risk of natural disasters is low and the government already owns 100,000 hectares (445,000 acres) of land.

“This is the best place,” President Joko Widodo said in a televised speech, it is in the middle of Indonesia and even closer to urban areas. 

He said the burden on Jakarta had increased significantly due to its focus on governance, business, finance, trade, and services. Jakarta-based political risk analyst Kevin O’Rourke said changing the capital from Jakarta would strengthen the alliance.

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President Joko Widodo said Jakarta would remain a mega-city and a hub for finance and trade for decades to come. However, he has serious concerns about climate change. The proposed bill will be introduced in Parliament. Officials say construction on Borneo Island will begin next year, with 1.5 million government officials transferred by 2024 at a cost of 466 trillion rupees (33 billion).

However, now the Indonesian parliament has approved the relocation of the capital from Jakarta. The Indonesian Minister of Planning said that the name of the new capital of Indonesia would be Nosantara, which is located on Jobonio Island. The new capital will be the center of the nation’s identity and economic activity.

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The relocation of the Indonesian capital from Jakarta was announced in 2019, however, due to the Corona epidemic, implementation was delayed.

Experts have criticized the relocation of the capital, saying that public opinion was not consulted for change and that environmental considerations were not taken into account. The part of the island of Borneo that meets Malaysia and Brunei is known as Clementan. While it is heavily mined, there are dense forests and it is one of the few places in the world where orangutans live. Environmentalists have expressed concern over the change of capital, saying it could endanger rare and endangered species.

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