Selasa, 27 Agustus 2019

KALIMANTAN FOREST TO REMAIN INTACT DESPITE CAPITAL DEVELOPMENT by Fardah

Selasa, 27 Ags 2019 20:07
Daerah : Jakarta
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Joko Widodo (Jokowi) administration has assured that the development of the capital city will not damage the environment and vowed that East Kalimantan forests will remain intact.
This comes after the government announced that parts of North Penajam Paser and Kutai Kertanegara Districts in East Kalimantan Province would be the location for the country’s new capital expected to be inaugurated in 2024, the year when Jokowi’s second term will end.
President Jokowi told the media August 26, 2019 that the two districts were selected, as they faced the least risks from natural disasters, including floods, earthquake, tsunamis, forest fires, and landslides.
Moreover, they are strategically located in the heart of Indonesia and near Balikpapan and Samarinda that are developed cities. Hence, basic infrastructure and facilities already exist. Besides, the government owns 180 thousand hectares of land there.
The decision to move from Jakarta was based on a three-year study conducted by the government.
"The results of the studies concluded that the ideal location for a new capital city will be part of North Penajam Paser District and part of Kutai Kartanegara District in East Kalimantan," President Jokowi, who has been re-elected for the 2019-2024 term, noted.
The work is expected to start in 2021 and cost up to Rp466 trillion (US$32.3 billion) to be covered by the State Budget (Rp74.44 trillion), Public-Private Partnership scheme (Rp265.2 trillion), and private investment (Rp127.3 trillion).
Relocating the capital city in Kalimantan has triggered debates on both sides. The island, also known as Borneo, is considered “the lung of the world” as it is home to vast forests that help absorb CO2.

Senin, 26 Agustus 2019

Refugees stranded for years in Indonesia, feel neglected by Fardah

Haydee Alnoori, 40, his wife, and five children, one Jakarta-born, demonstrated with Iraqi refugees, brandishing “We are Iraqis marginalized” papers before the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Jakarta office on Aug 22.
"We are marginalized. We came here six years ago. My children face an unknown future,” Alnoori informed the media.

Alnoori stated that his youngest son, born in Jakarta as a refugee, had no nationality, as he had yet to be listed on either the Indonesian or Iraqi government’s population document.

The Iraqi refugees staged protests on several occasions and claimed to have negotiated with the UNHCR a fortnight ago and had ended the demonstration to give it some time, but to no avail, as the UN body neither took concrete action nor gave any form of promise.

The Iraqi refugees vowed to continue to protest until the time the UNHCR acts in their favor.

In Medan, North Sumatra Province, several refugees also rallied on the same day.

Ibrahim Basir, a Palestinian refugee, was displeased and annoyed over the fact that despite the refugees having resided in Medan for several years, their cause had been forgotten and that the UNHCR had yet to process matters over moving them to third countries, such as Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the United States.
"We are bored of living like this. We just eat and sleep and are not allowed to find jobs," he stated.

Minggu, 25 Agustus 2019

Forest fires drive Sumatran tiger from their habitats by Fardah

Indonesia, home to the Sumatran tiger, joined celebrations on International Tiger Day, observed on July 25, to raise support for the conservation of tigers.
The Sumatran tiger is the only surviving tiger in the country, and the smallest of the five tiger subspecies in the world. In the 1970s, the number of Sumatran tigers had reached some 1,000, though the figure decreased to 800 by the 1980s. Currently, the population is believed to be between 400 and 600 tigers.

In earlier days, Indonesia was home to three tiger species, including the Bali tiger, which became extinct in 1940, and the Java tiger, declared extinct in the 1980s.
While environmentalists, experts and officials campaigned during Global Tiger Day, still, the few remaining Sumatran tigers have to struggle to survive, as Sumatra Island has been ravaged by hundreds of hotspots, similar to forest fires, since July 2019.

Riau Province on Sumatra Island has been the most affected by forest fires. Wildfires also broke out in the province’s Tesso Nilo, a 81,700-hectare national park, which is a habitat for critically endangered tigers and elephants.

A video of a tiger running near the fence of the Chevron facility in Siak District, Riau, went viral in early August 2019.

Head of the Riau BBKSDA (Natural Resource Conservation Office) Suharyono confirmed the receipt of information from Vice President External Affairs of Chevron Hasim M. Noor explaining that the video was taken by a security guard at Kilometer 5 of the eastern Trans-Sumatra road near Gathering Station (GS) facility 5 of Chevron in Minas.

Jumat, 23 Agustus 2019

RELOCATING INDONESIA'S CAPITAL TO KALIMANTAN, "THE WORLD'S LUNG" by Fardah

Jumat, 23 Ags 2019 22:24

Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) on August 16, 2019, officially announced his plan to move Indonesia’s capital city to Kalimantan Island and asked for the Parliament’s permission for that purpose.
On August 22, Minister of Agrarian Affairs and Spatial Planning Sofyan Djalil spoke of East Kalimantan as the most likely location for the new capital city. However, Jokowi later denied the assertion and said that studies are still on to decide the location.
In May 2019, Jokowi visited Kalimantan to look for a location for his plan and one of the options was Bukit Soeharto (Soeharto Hill) Forest Park located in Samboja Sub-district, Kutai Kartanegara district, East Kalimantan Province. Between 200,000 and 300,000 hectares are needed to host the new capital city.
Pros and cons emerged in the public regarding Kalimantan also known as Borneo, as the host of the capital city to replace Jakarta. Several young people recently interviewed by TVOne expressed their objection. They specifically mentioned that Kalimantan has so far served as "the lungs of the world", and the massive development needed to build a new capital city would destroy a part of the island's forests.
Located near Balikpapan City, Bukit Soeharto Forest Park hosts the Wanariset Samboja Orangutan Rehabilitation and Reintroduction Center, as well as an education forest managed by the University of Mulawarman.
Balikpapan also has the Sungai (River) Wain Protected Forest (HLSW) which has extraordinary biodiversity including endangered fauna such as sambar deer, orangutans (Pongo pygmaues), sun bears (Helarctos malayanus), and nearly 200 species of birds.
Surrounding Balikpapan, there are also many primary forests, mangrove forests, seagrass beds, and coral reefs on its coastal area.

Selasa, 20 Agustus 2019

90 cyclists from 22 nations pursue glory in Tour d'Indonesia by Fardah

Jakarta , AUg 2, 2019 (ANTARA) - An enthralling adventure that started from Central Java’s Borobudur Temple and will conclude on Bali Island is set to test the mettle of 22 countries’ 90 cyclists participating in Tour d'Indonesia (TdI).
The UCI category 2.1 international cycling race of TdI 2019 was kicked off from the 9th-century Borobudur Temple, the world's largest and oldest Buddhist temple located in Magelang, Central Java Province, on Aug 19, with 18 domestic and foreign participating teams. The cyclists are expected to reach the finish line on Bali Island, one of the world's most famous tourist resort, on Aug 23.

The TdI 2019 comprises five stages, notably Candi Borobudur-Ngawi, stretching 178 kilometers (km); Madiun-Batu, 157.7 km; Batu-Jember, 195.9 km; Jember-Banyuwangi, 150km; and Gilimanuk-Batur UNESCO Global Geopark, 143.6km.

Of the 18 teams, the four Indonesian teams are Indonesia's National Team, PGN Road Cycling Team, Custom Cycling Indonesia (CCI), and KFC Cycling Team.
The foreign participants comprise those from France, Greece, Spain, and England, Parama Nugroho, chairman of the Bank BRI Tour d’Indonesia, remarked.
"We have made comprehensive preparations and are content that all regional heads, whose cities fall on the race's route, fully support the event," he emphasized.

Australian cyclist Angus Lyons emerged as the supreme winner of the first stage in a tightly contested race.

Sabtu, 17 Agustus 2019

PEACE DIPLOMACY A PRIORITY IN KASHMIR ISSUE

Sabtu, 17 Ags 2019 20:24
Daerah : Jakarta
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Nearly four million Kashmiris have been under lockdown with movement restrictions and a near communications blackout since August 4, 2019, as the Indian Government recently revoked special status accorded to Indian-administered Kashmir in its Constitution.
In the lead-up to the move, India sent tens of thousands of additional troops – joining 500,000 already there - to the disputed region, imposed a crippling curfew, shut down telecommunications and the Internet, arrested hundreds of Kashmiri political leaders, and turned parts of the main city of Srinagar into a fortress of roadblocks and barbed wire.
The latest developments have escalated the tension between nuclear-armed India and Pakistan, which have fought two of their three wars over the disputed territory of Kashmir.
Pakistan formally asked the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) recently to hold an emergency session to address the situation.
As a non-permanent member of the UNSC, Indonesia, however, believes that dialogue and communication between Pakistan and India would be more desirable to resolve the Kashmir problem.
From Indonesia's point of view, peace and security diplomacy must be prioritized in dealing with the Kashmir issue. Indonesia is also of the view that the solution to the problem should be sought bilaterally by Pakistan and India. A bilateral solution is a key to this problem.
Teuku Faizasyah, spokesman for the Indonesian Foreign Affairs Ministry, said in a statement on August 15, 2019 that it would be better for Pakistan and India to hold a dialogue to resolve the Kashmir problem, because a communication deadlock has led to information scarcity, giving rise to various interpretations that have only led to an escalation of the problem.
In the UN Security Council, Indonesia emphasized the importance of the two countries exercising restraint and resolving the problem bilaterally, Febrian Alphyanto Ruddyard, Director General of Multilateral Cooperation of the Indonesian Foreign Affairs Ministry, said.

EMPOWERING INDONESIAN DIASPORA TO ACCELERATE NATIONAL HRD

Sabtu, 17 Ags 2019 22:57
Daerah : Jakarta
By Fardah
Jakarta, 17/8 (Antara) - Some seven million Indonesians living overseas are a huge asset for national development if they are synergized with the Indonesian governments programs.
Supporting the Indonesian Vision of President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) for his second term (2019-2024), the Fifth Congress of Indonesian Diaspora (CID-5) was organized in Jakarta, from Aug 10 to 13, 2019, by the Indonesian Diaspora Network-Global (IDN-Global).
Themed Empowering Indonesia's Human Capital, the congress discussed efforts to strengthen the role of the Indonesian diaspora in improving the quality of human resources in their home country.
"We chose this theme because human resource is the Indonesian diasporas biggest strength. We believe human resource development is the key to Indonesia's future," Gerald Eman, the president of IDN-Global Mark told the press prior to the CID-5.
Dino Patti Djalal, chairman of the Indonesian Diaspora Network-Global (IDN-Global) Board of Trustees, believed that if the Indonesian Diaspora is synergized with the governments programs, the impact would be enormous.
"The diaspora can function as an accelerator for the development of Indonesian human resources in the future and this could be the key for Indonesia to become the giant of Asia," said Djalal, who is also a senior diplomat and former Indonesian Ambassador to the United States.
The CID-5 is a biannual event organized to connect Indonesians living abroad and create a platform for them to contribute to national development.
Some 5,000 participants comprising Indonesian diaspora from around the world, government officials, religious figures, politicians, celebrities, artists, athletes, innovators, academics and youth leaders attended the event.

Jumat, 16 Agustus 2019

QUALITY HUMAN RESOURCES WILL MAKE INDONESIA DEVELOPED NATION

Jumat, 16 Ags 2019 23:45



By Fardah
Jakarta, 16/8 (Antara) - At the beginning of the first term of his presidency in 2014, Joko Widodo (Jokowi) had expressed his ambition to develop Indonesia into a maritime axis and revive the country's past maritime glory.
One of the keys to realizing this ambition is by building competent and professional human resources in the maritime field.

And now, as his first presidential term draws to a close, Jokowi, who has been reelected for the 2019-2024 period in the 2019 Presidential Election, unveiled his vision to make Indonesia a developed country and one of the worlds economic powers, by relying on the quality of human resources and mobilization of its economic resources.

"We are the fourth largest population in the world. Most of them are young people. Our middle class population grows rapidly," the President said while delivering his address on the Government Statement on the Bill in the State Budget for the 2020 Fiscal Year and Its Financial Note before the Plenary Session of the House of Representatives (DPR) at the Parliament Building, August 16, 2019, a day prior to the Indonesian National Day.

Indonesia currently has a population with a productive age constituting 68 percent of the total population of 267 million.

The government's determination to make Indonesia a developed nation reflects in the 2020 fiscal policy themed A State Budget to Accelerate Competitiveness through Innovation and Improved Quality of Human Resources.

Therefore, the State Budget Bill focuses on five main aspects, notably strengthening the quality of human resources, accelerating infrastructure development in support of economic transformation, strengthening social protection programs, improving the quality of fiscal decentralization to boost regional autonomy, and anticipating global uncertainty.

Rabu, 14 Agustus 2019

ALL-OUT EFFORTS TO EXTINGUISH WILDFIRES ON SUMATRA, KALIMANTAN ISLANDS

Rabu, 14 Ags 2019 20:48
By Fardah
Jakarta, 14/8 (Antara) - Indonesian Defense Forces Commander Air Chief Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto, National Police Chief General Tito Karnavian, Environmental Affairs and Forestry Minister Siti Nurbaya, and National Disaster Mitigation Agency Head Lt Gen. Doni Munardo, Aug 13, oversaw Riaus forest firefighting.
Aboard helicopters, they reviewed the condition of nature at the Tesso Nilo National Park (TNTN), Indragiri Hulu, and Indragiri Hilir, among others, where wildfires razed forest and peatland areas.

In Jakarta, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) had recently chaired a meeting at the State Palace to discuss efforts to combat forest fires. He instructed all-out efforts to extinguish the wildfires.

Eight provinces in Indonesia are prone to forest fires, but only six have declared an emergency status for forest fire, Director of Forest Fire Mitigation Raffles B. Panjaitan of the Environmental Affairs and Forestry Ministry stated.

The six provinces are Riau, with the emergency status declared from Feb 19 to Oct 31, or 255 days; West Kalimantan (from Feb 12 to Dec 31, or 323 days); South Sumatra (March 8-Oct 31, or 237 days); Central Kalimantan (May 28-Aug 26, or 91 days); South Kalimantan (June 1-Oct 31, or 153 days); and Jambi (July 23-Oct 20, or 90 days).

Based on satellite monitoring on Aug 10, at 7 a.m. local time, 126 hotspots were found in Riau, four in Jambi, 13 each in South Sumatra and South Kalimantan, 533 in West Kalimantan, and 159 in Central Kalimantan.

Minggu, 11 Agustus 2019

INDONESIA REMAINS UPBEAT DESPITE REVISING TOURIST ARRIVAL TARGET

Minggu, 11 Ags 2019 09:57
By Fardah
Jakarta, 11/8 (Antara) -  With his ministry working hard to promote Indonesia globally, particularly in China, India, the Middle East and Europe, nearly 18 million tourists will arrive this year, an optimistic Indonesian Tourism Minister Arief Yahya believes.
Tourism Minister Arief Yahya launched a Calendar of 100 Wonderful Indonesian Tourism Events in late 2018 to promote the country's tourism attractions and attract foreign tourists.
The Calendar of 100 Wonderful Indonesia Tourism Events is the initiative of President Joko Widodo to inform the world that the country has various events of international standards.
Besides, the Tourism Ministry has intensified the role of the Tourist Information Center (TIC) and coordinated with various regional administrations to step up tourism promotion activities.
The target of 18 million foreign tourists has been revised from the previous target of 20 million foreign visitors this year.
Several unpredictable circumstances such as natural disasters have affected the arrivals of foreign tourists in the first semester this year, forcing a revision in the target, the Tourism Ministry explained in late July.
"According to data from the BPS (Central Bureau of Statistics), the number of foreign tourist arrivals last year was 15.8 million. It would require a huge increase from 15.8 (million) to 20 (million). Therefore, this year's target has been revised to some 18 million," Esthy Reko Astuti, expert staff of the Tourism Ministry in charge of the Management of the Calendar of Events, said July 29, 2019.
Between January and May 2019, Indonesia welcomed 6.37 million foreign tourists, a 2.7 percent rise as compared to the corresponding period of the previous year. In May 2019, the number of foreign tourists had reached 1.256 million.

Jumat, 09 Agustus 2019

Transforming Lake Toba into world-class tourist destination by Fardah

The huge Lake Toba and Samosir Island, lying at its center, offer a well-rounded tourism package incorporating scenic beauty, inimitable Batak culture and traditions, and captivating history.
Located in North Sumatra Province, Lake Toba is undoubtedly not just any ordinary lake but is the largest volcanic lake on Earth.

The ancient lake has been formed by a steep-walled caldera produced during the Toba volcano's eruption, the largest known volcanic eruption on the planet in the past two million years. The powerful eruption, an extremely rare event, is called a supervolcanic eruption.

When viewed from space, the Toba caldera is one of the most striking volcanic craters on Earth, measuring 100 x 30 kilometers.

After Lake Toba’s designation as a priority tourist destination, the Indonesian government has been developing various facilities and infrastructure to support the tourism industry in North Sumatra Province, where the ancient lake is located.

Investment for the development of Lake Toba, totaling Rp3.5 trillion, has been sourced from the State Budget (APBN), the president noted in a press statement released by the Presidential Secretariat.

The government is upbeat about attracting private investments valued at thrice to five times bigger than the government's investment for Lake Toba.

New ASEAN Secretariat building marks bloc's 52nd anniversary by Fardah

Jakarta,Aug 9, 2019 - The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has a new multi-storey building emblematic of regional harmony, dialog, and unity in Jakarta, as the grouping celebrated its 52nd anniversary on Aug 8, 2019.
President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) inaugurated the new ASEAN Secretariat (ASEC) building in the presence of ASEAN Secretary General Dato Lim Jock Hoi, foreign ministers, and representatives from its 10 member countries, as well as some 600 other guests, including former ASEAN secretaries general: Tan Sri Dato Ajit Singh and Ambassador Le Luong Minh.

ASEAN members comprise Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, Brunei Darussalam, Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar, and Cambodia.

After signing the stone marker, Jokowi, accompanied by Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Retno L. P. Marsudi, symbolically handed over the new building’s key to Dato Lim.

Jokowi, in his remarks, admitted to his personal attachment to the construction of the new ASEC building since he was the governor of Jakarta some seven years ago, and thus, he has monitored the construction progress closely.

"Indonesia has endeavored to facilitate the ASEAN to work in a fast, solid, effective, and efficient manner. Based on that thought, we construct this building," he emphasized.

The president expressed hope that most ASEAN activities would be conducted in the building, so it could cut travel spending, and the fund would be utilized for other activities.
Jokowi lauded the regional grouping for playing a central role among countries by promoting unity, the very reason it has lasted for 52 years.

Jumat, 02 Agustus 2019

TACKLING FOREST FIRES IN 5 INDONESIAN PROVINCES

Jumat, 2 Ags 2019 22:25
Daerah : Jakarta
By Fardah
Jakarta, 2/8 (Antara) - Several children attending the Islam Akramunnas Kindergarten in Pekanbaru, Riau Province, had no option but to wear face masks as haze, arising from forest and bush fires, hung over the city since early this week.
Being susceptible to smoke emitted from forest fires, the children were told about the health hazards posed by exposure to haze and hence were asked to wear the masks.
"Before entering the classrooms and before leaving for home, we remind the children of the dangers of haze," said Afni Sarianti, the kindergartens teacher who was also wearing a mask.
The government is expected to deal promptly with forest and bush fires to prevent the recurrence of the forest fire and the resultant haze that took place in 2015 and forced schools to temporarily close for nearly a month.
The dry season will last from July to October this year and when it peaks in August it will be drier than in the previous years, the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) has predicted.
Some 28 of the 34 provinces in Indonesia are threatened by drought due to the severe dry spell induced by the El Nino natural phenomenon, Deputy Coordinating Minister for Human Development and Culture Dody Usodo has warned. He reminded people to remain vigilant about forest fires and the water crisis.
Until July 17, land and forest fires in the country had covered 42,740.42 hectares in 24 provinces. Nearly 99 percent of the fires were triggered by intentional or accidental human activities, Agus Wibowo, spokesman of the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) said.

Kamis, 01 Agustus 2019

GOVERNMENT REMAINS UPBEAT ABOUT INVESTMENT GROWTH IN 2019-2024 PERIOD

Kamis, 1 Ags 2019 19:22

By Fardah
Jakarta, 1/8 (Antara) - To drive more investment that can generate employment opportunities features among the priority programs vowed by President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) in his second term for the 2019-2024 period.
Jokowi outlined his priority programs also encompassing infrastructure development at an event called "Indonesian Vision" held at the Sentul International Convention Center, Bogor, West Java, on July 14, 2019, following his victory in the 2019 presidential elections.

Over the past week, in a bid to pursue the investment target, the president had held meetings with potential investors, including the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince, Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who had echoed his countrys commitment to boosting investment in Indonesia.

During a visit to Indonesia on July 24, 2019, three investment pacts worth $9 billion were inked in the presence of the Crown Prince and the Indonesian president at the Bogor Presidential Palace.

On the subsequent day, Jokowi held discussions, prioritizing efforts to intensify investment in Indonesia, with leaders from the Hyundai Motor Group.

"We spoke about the investment plan from Hyundai Motors in Indonesia," Industry Minister Airlangga Hartarto remarked after accompanying President Jokowi to welcome Hyundai Motors delegates at the State Palace in Jakarta.

Hyundai Motors plans to produce vehicles in Indonesia and has outlined an export target of 40 percent abroad and in the domestic market. Discussion on the investment value is yet underway.

Furthermore, Jokowi had received Softbank CEO Masayoshi and Grab CEO Anthony Tan at the Merdeka Palace in Jakarta on July 29.