Indonesia to start construction of new capital in August

Artist’s view of the planned new Presidential Palace in Nusantara

Indonesia’s government will start construction of the first government buildings at its new capital Nusantara in August, the country’s minister of public works and housing, Basuki Hadimuljono, said, according to Bloomberg News.

Developing infrastructure, including water systems, sanitation and toll roads, will also be started, the minister added.

Indonesia plans to move its capital from overcrowded, polluted and sinking Jakarta to East Kalimantan on Borneo island. The move is also meant to redistribute economic activity and development outside of Indonesia’s wealthiest island of Java.

“What is most important is that we want to be Indonesia-centric, not Java-centric,” Indonesia’s president Joko Widodo said in a recent note.

“When we draw a line from west to east and north to south, the center point is this East Kalimantan province,” he added.

Sustainable city in the middle of the rainforest

Nusantara is being planned as an environmentally-friendly city that will use entirely renewable energy, despite criticism that its construction could threaten one of the world’s oldest rainforests.

The costs for the construction of the new capital from scratch are estimated at between $32 billion and $34 billion, whereby the funding is far from being secured. Former potential backer, Japan’s Softbank, has said it will not participate in the funding of Nusantara.

The Asian Development Bank has said it would will support Indonesia in setting up its new capital city by “mobilising” funds, and Indonesian officials have even proposed crowdfunding as one source of financing.

(UPDATE: Indonesia’s investment minister Bahlil Lahadalia said in a statement on June 26 that Taiwan’s electronics company Foxconn Technology Group is considering investing in the country’s new capital and is looking at setting up an electric bus system and an Internet of Things network in Nusantara.)

Public support for Nusantara waning

Meanwhile, studies show that support for the new capital has waned from an initially higher level when the actual announcement was made in 2020, according to national surveys conducted by an independent survey agency, Indonesian Political Indicators.

In 2020, 53 per cent of Indonesian citizens stated that they strongly or quite agreed with the plan to move the capital, but this support declined slightly to 48.5 per cent in 2022. While in 2020 only 33.6 per cent said they disagreed or strongly disagreed, in 2022 the level of public disapproval increased to 44 per cent.

This means that unlike in 2020, current public attitudes are more divided between those who are for and those who are against Nusantara. The analysts are attributing this mainly to the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 which has very likely reduced public support for the new capital in the 2022 survey, noting that the public health crisis has lowered its overall priority among citizens.



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[caption id="attachment_38564" align="alignleft" width="300"] Artist's view of the planned new Presidential Palace in Nusantara[/caption] Indonesia’s government will start construction of the first government buildings at its new capital Nusantara in August, the country’s minister of public works and housing, Basuki Hadimuljono, said, according to Bloomberg News. Developing infrastructure, including water systems, sanitation and toll roads, will also be started, the minister added. Indonesia plans to move its capital from overcrowded, polluted and sinking Jakarta to East Kalimantan on Borneo island. The move is also meant to redistribute economic activity and development outside of Indonesia’s wealthiest island of Java. “What is...

Artist’s view of the planned new Presidential Palace in Nusantara

Indonesia’s government will start construction of the first government buildings at its new capital Nusantara in August, the country’s minister of public works and housing, Basuki Hadimuljono, said, according to Bloomberg News.

Developing infrastructure, including water systems, sanitation and toll roads, will also be started, the minister added.

Indonesia plans to move its capital from overcrowded, polluted and sinking Jakarta to East Kalimantan on Borneo island. The move is also meant to redistribute economic activity and development outside of Indonesia’s wealthiest island of Java.

“What is most important is that we want to be Indonesia-centric, not Java-centric,” Indonesia’s president Joko Widodo said in a recent note.

“When we draw a line from west to east and north to south, the center point is this East Kalimantan province,” he added.

Sustainable city in the middle of the rainforest

Nusantara is being planned as an environmentally-friendly city that will use entirely renewable energy, despite criticism that its construction could threaten one of the world’s oldest rainforests.

The costs for the construction of the new capital from scratch are estimated at between $32 billion and $34 billion, whereby the funding is far from being secured. Former potential backer, Japan’s Softbank, has said it will not participate in the funding of Nusantara.

The Asian Development Bank has said it would will support Indonesia in setting up its new capital city by “mobilising” funds, and Indonesian officials have even proposed crowdfunding as one source of financing.

(UPDATE: Indonesia’s investment minister Bahlil Lahadalia said in a statement on June 26 that Taiwan’s electronics company Foxconn Technology Group is considering investing in the country’s new capital and is looking at setting up an electric bus system and an Internet of Things network in Nusantara.)

Public support for Nusantara waning

Meanwhile, studies show that support for the new capital has waned from an initially higher level when the actual announcement was made in 2020, according to national surveys conducted by an independent survey agency, Indonesian Political Indicators.

In 2020, 53 per cent of Indonesian citizens stated that they strongly or quite agreed with the plan to move the capital, but this support declined slightly to 48.5 per cent in 2022. While in 2020 only 33.6 per cent said they disagreed or strongly disagreed, in 2022 the level of public disapproval increased to 44 per cent.

This means that unlike in 2020, current public attitudes are more divided between those who are for and those who are against Nusantara. The analysts are attributing this mainly to the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 which has very likely reduced public support for the new capital in the 2022 survey, noting that the public health crisis has lowered its overall priority among citizens.



Support ASEAN news

Investvine has been a consistent voice in ASEAN news for more than a decade. From breaking news to exclusive interviews with key ASEAN leaders, we have brought you factual and engaging reports – the stories that matter, free of charge.

Like many news organisations, we are striving to survive in an age of reduced advertising and biased journalism. Our mission is to rise above today’s challenges and chart tomorrow’s world with clear, dependable reporting.

Support us now with a donation of your choosing. Your contribution will help us shine a light on important ASEAN stories, reach more people and lift the manifold voices of this dynamic, influential region.

 

 

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