Monday, May 29, 2017


Jakarta, May 29, 2017 (Antara) - Indonesia has targeted the development of livable, safe, and comfortable cities in 2025, enabling the development of green cities in 2035 and the establishment of competitive and technology-based smart cities in 2045.    
    Smart city is a concept of city development, with information technology applications used to manage natural as well as human resources efficiently and effectively.

        For that purpose, the government has encouraged the implementation of the smart city concept in an effort to improve its regional competitiveness as well as social and economic indicators.
          "Smart City has been implemented globally. In Indonesia, it has been running but still in its early stages; for instance, Surabaya has established information technology for e-governance and services," Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Darmin Nasution said at a seminar on Smart City Smart Region recently.
         According to the minister, smart city development would have a positive impact on the workforce, electrification, and logistic sector.
         Smart city could also increase labor efficiency by simplifying the working process, creating competition that will improve their quality, and generating more new jobs.
         However, he admitted that Indonesia has faced challenges in developing a smart city, such as digital imbalance, lack of supporting infrastructure, as well as human resources to run information technology in smart city.
          Therefore, the government has issued some economic policy packages to support smart city implementation.

Saturday, May 27, 2017


Jakarta, May 27, 2017 (Antara) - As leaders of the world's most populous Muslim country, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) and Vice President M. Jusuf Kalla were recently invited to speak at separate international meetings on Islam.
        The head of state attended an Arab Islamic American Summit organized by the Saudi Arabian Government in Riyadh on May 20, while the vice president delivered a general lecture themed "Islam Middle Path: Indonesia's Experience" at the Oxford Center for Islamic Studies of Oxford University in Oxford City, England, on May 18.
         The Riyadh Summit was also attended by leaders from Muslim-majority countries, Saudi Arabian King Salman Abdulaziz Al-Saud, and US President Donald Trump to outline new commitments to combating global terrorism.
         While speaking for five minutes before the Saudi King and other leaders, Jokowi urged western nations, including the US, to not associate Islam with terrorism.
         Indonesia is optimistic of decoupling the image of Islam from terrorism to counter Islamophobia in the West.    
    Jokowi believed that the summit held significance in terms of spreading the message of partnership between Islamic countries and the US as well as eliminating the perception that the US views Islam as an enemy.

Thursday, May 25, 2017


Jakarta, May 25, 2017 (Antara)- From President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) to Ulemas (Muslim scholars) and Jakarta's governor-elect Anies Baswedan, among others, several prominent figures have strongly condemned the suicide terror attack that hit near Kampung Melayu bus terminal, eastern Jakarta, killing three police officers.
          The Jakarta bomb explosions that occurred on May 24 evening, just two days after Manchester terror attack, killed two suspected suicide bombers too.
          One of the suicide bombers, identified by his initial as INS (40), was killed, with his head, legs, and body blown apart. Another suspect, believed to be a woman, was killed too.
          Eleven people, including five police officers, two female university students, and drivers of public vehicles, were injured in the twin blasts that hit five minutes apart at 9 p.m. and 9:05 p.m. local time, respectively.
         The injured victims were rushed to the Premier Jatinegara Hospital, Said Sukant Kramat Jati Police Hospital, Budi Asih Hospital, and Hermina Hospital that were located nearby.
        The police officers were on duty to guard a group of people who were holding a torch parade to welcome the Islamic fasting month of Ramadan. The parade had not yet passed by when the blasts occurred.
         The country's Head of State and various other parties expressed their condolences to the victims and families of the suicide bombing.
          "I convey my deepest condolences to the victims and their families, including those still in hospital, particularly the police officers on duty," Jokowi stated at his residence in Solo, Central Java, on May 25.
          The president has instructed Chief of the National Police General Tito Karnavian to investigate the crime and quell the network of suicide bombers.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017


Jakarta, May 23, 2017 (Antara) - Indonesia's ambitious program for the restoration of its peatland areas that is spread across two million hectares has attracted the attention of several advanced countries.
         Countries such as Norway, Germany, the United Kingdom, Denmark, Australia, Canada, Japan, and South Korea have lauded Indonesia's efforts and pledged to provide financial assistance for the program.
           "Restoration of peatland areas has gained global attention, apart from reforestation. So far, the world's response has been positive toward Indonesia," Nazir Foead, head of the Peat Restoration Agency (BRG), said while speaking to the press on the sidelines of the first Asia Bonn Challenge High Level Round-table Meeting held in Palembang, South Sumatra, recently.
        For Indonesia, the Bonn Challenge has strengthened its commitment toward preserving peatland areas in particular, and tropical forests in general.
         Taking into account the importance of tropical peat protection and restoration, the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) has launched the Global Peatland Initiatives (GPI), along with the member countries that have peatlands, such as the Democratic Republic of Congo and Peru.
         The GPI was launched at the 2016 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Morocco.
            "The GPI is a foundation that allows Indonesia to serve as an example in the efforts to restore peatlands and lowland landscapes where peat domes are located," Tim Christophersen, UNEP's Senior Programme Officer, Forests and Climate Change, stated in Jakarta on May 15.

Saturday, May 20, 2017


Jakarta, May 20, 2017 (Antara) - Located in downtown Bogor, West Java, the Bogor Botanical Gardens, Indonesia's oldest and largest botanical garden, celebrated its 200th anniversary on May 18 this year.
        The celebration was marked by a series of activities, such as the issuance of the first-day cover of the special-edition stamps of orchids from 34 provinces along with a four-day plantation exhibition on May 18-21, the 200K Run on May 20-21, environmental education programs on May 19-21, fun bike event on Aug 20, an international seminar, art and cultural festivals, botanical photography contests, and sports competitions. 
    Among several VIPs present during the celebration were former president Megawati Soekarnoputri in her capacity as chairperson of the Indonesian Botanical Garden Foundation, Communication and Informatics Minister Rudiantara, Chairman of the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) Prof. Iskandar Zulkarnain, and Head of the Presidential Staff Teten Masduki.     
    The Bogor Botanical Gardens are the largest center of off-site conservation and research on plant species in Indonesia, the botanical garden's spokesperson, Roniati A. Risna, stated recently.
         "The Bogor Botanical Gardens have an area of about 87 hectares, with a total collection of 12,531 species of plants that are grouped into 3,228 species, 1,210 genera, and 214 families," she said.  
    It boasts over 400 species of palm trees, five thousand trees from around the tropical world, and an orchid house containing three thousand varieties.
        The gardens are the pride of Indonesians, as they are also the oldest in Southeast Asia and the third-oldest in the world after the three-century-old Pandova Botanical Garden in Italy and the Royal Botanical Garden of Sydney in Australia, which had just turned 200 in 2016.


Jakarta, May 20, 2017 (Antara) - Indonesia has survived WannaCry ransomware attack that recently affected at least 200 thousand computers in some 100 countries, including Indonesia.
           "Today there is no WannaCry, not only in Indonesia but also across the world," Minister Rudiantara stated on the sidelines of the 2017 Asia Pacific Satellite Communications System International Conference on May 17, 2017.
          In Indonesia, 12 institutions were affected by the WannaCry virus earlier in May.
           "We have received a report confirming that 12 institutions were affected, but the figure could be higher," the minister said.
           The affected institutions included those in the plantation and manufacturing sectors, universities, and the vehicle registration center located in Jakarta and other regions.
          "However, in general, the attack was not significant when compared to those reported in other countries, thanks to the media that helped us to warn the public," he added.
        The WannaCry virus that attacks through data networks or the internet did not have a significant impact on Indonesia owing to the implementation of effective preventive measures, such as cutting off the internet connections and creating a backup of the data, he remarked.
            The minister, however, admitted that a few parties were affected by the WannaCry virus due to which they could not access their data, but such cases were few.

Saturday, May 13, 2017


Jakarta, May 13, 2017 (Antara) - The two-day state visit of President Veronica Michelle Bachelet to Indonesia on May 12 and 13 was considered significant because the Indonesian government has been trying to expand the market for its products in South America.      
    Indonesia is expecting that Chile will serve as the gateway for its products to enter South America.
         President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) warmly welcomed his counterpart at the Merdeka Palace on May 12, where they had a bilateral meeting to discuss efforts to strengthen bilateral relations between the countries, particularly in the areas of economy, trade, maritime, socio-cultural, and fisheries.     
    Jokowi said President Bachelet's visit to Indonesia came at an opportune time, as Indonesia has been intensifying trade and investment, and Chile is one of the priority countries.
         "Trade and investment issues are the main topics during the bilateral talks," he noted.
         President Widodo lauded the business delegation accompanying President Bachelet.
         "We have agreed that in future, bilateral cooperation will focus on several fields, such as fishery, strategic industries, agriculture, and the trade of agricultural products," he revealed.
         Chile is Indonesia's third-largest trade partner in South America. In 2016, trade between Chile and Indonesia had reached US$227 million, with Indonesia enjoying a surplus of $60.5 million.
         Indonesia's main exports to Chile include footwear, apparel and accessories, electrical machinery, rubber and paper. Meanwhile, Chile's main exports to Indonesia include wood, charcoal, glass and glassware, aluminum and foodstuff such as citrus fruits and fruit peel.

Thursday, May 11, 2017


Jakarta, May 11, 2017 (Antara) - Papua has received special attention from President Joko Widodo (Jokowi). Soon after he was sworn in as Indonesian president in October 2014, he visited the country's eastern-most province in December.
           During his first visit, he promised the Papuans that he would frequently visit the province, and he also promised to build the traditional Mama-Mama market into a modern market.
          The president has fulfilled his promises. Since his presidential inauguration, he has visited Papua six times, including in May and December 2015, and April and October 2016.
           The latest visit was on May 19, 2017, which was part of his nation-wide five-day tour that took him among other things to Aceh, South Kalimantan, and North Maluku.
             This time, he delivered another promise, namely the completion of the four-story Mama-Mama market.  
    The market is in downtown Jayapura and is built on a plot of land measuring 4,490 square meters and can accommodate up to 300 vendors.
          The market has modern facilities and is expected to attract domestic and foreign tourists to visit Papua Province.
           Jowoki was accompanied by First Lady Iriana, State Enterprises (BUMN) Minister Rini Soemarno, Social Affairs Minister Khofifah Indar Parawansa, Minister of Women's Empowerment and Child Protection Yohanna Yembise, and Health Minister Nila Moeloek during his hour-long visit to the market.
       The President and his entourage walked to the market from the hotel where he was staying during his stay in the city.
        The market, which is about 50 meters from the Aston Jayapura Hotel, was earlier an office and the Damri bus terminal.
         Following his arrival at the market, Jokowi immediately received an update from Minister Soemarno on the development of the market and then inspected the stalls on the first floor and observed the facilities on the second floor.    
   The construction of the market began on April 30, 2016, and has now been completed. 
   The market and its facilities are now ready to be used, President Jokowi said.
        "The most important thing is that it is now 100 percent ready, and training is being continuously carried out," he was quoted as saying by Bey Machmudin, head of the Press, Media and Information Bureau of the Presidential Secretariat.
         The inauguration of the market, however, awaits the installation of Jayapura's mayor.
            The central government has handed over the operation of the market to the Papua provincial administration.
            "The inauguration of the market should be organized by the governor, and we are waiting for the new mayor to be installed," the head of state noted.
         The construction of the Mama-Mama Market supports the Women's Empowerment and Child Protection Ministry's program to eradicate economic injustice faced by women, the minister emphasized.
       Minister Yembise, who is an indigenous Papuan, expressed hope that the newly built Mama-Mama Market would help increase the income of mothers in Papua.
            "The President hopes that this market will soon be used for the benefit of mothers. We have also engaged in training women here, so that they can produce Papua's main commodities that could be then sold in this market or even outside Papua," Yembise stated, while accompanying the President during the visit to the Mama-Mama Market.
                During his Papua visit, the President also officiated several projects, including the construction of the 50-Megawatt (MW) feed gas-fired plant (PLTMG), and the Integrated State Boundary Post in Skouw, Jayapura.
        The president vowed to build a market center soon for the local people in Skouw, which shares its borders with Papua New Guinea (PNG).
        "The development of supporting facility will take place immediately around the Skouw checkpoint," Jokowi remarked, adding that the border market center will contribute to improving the welfare of the people.   
    Most of the buyers at the market are expected to be the inhabitants of Papua and PNG.     
    Meanwhile, the development of five thousand traditional markets and modernizing of the old ones are among the Jokowi administration's Nawacita (Nine Priorities) program during his five-year term (2014-2019). 
    The head of state called for transparent and professional management of the traditional markets to boost their competitiveness and make them at par with modern markets, such as malls and shopping centers.  
The President urged vendors in newly built traditional market to maintain cleanliness and tidiness.
             He hoped to put an end to the image that traditional markets are dirty and muddy places.
              The central government has planned to build at least 15 traditional markets in Papua and West Papua Provinces, with the main objective of improving the welfare of the local community. Markets are also expected to help stabilize commodity prices in Papua.
             Among the new markets will be Iriati Central Market in Wondama (West Papua), Kenyam in Nduga (Papua), Mulia in Puncak Jaya (Papua), and Tambaruni in Fak (West Papua), in addition to Elelim in Yalimo (Papua), Waisei in Raja Empat (West Papua), Rufei in Sorong (West Papua), and Kumurkek in Maybrat (West Papua). The other markets are Doyo Baru in Sentani-Jayapura (Papua), Entrop in Jayapura, Wosi in Manokwari (West Papua), Waropen in Papua, and Jibama in Jayawijaya (Papua), besides Eiknemba in Intan Jaya (Papua), and Kaimana in West Papua. ***3***

(T.F001/A/BESSR/A. Abdussalam) 11-05-2017


Jakarta, May 11, 2017 (Antara) - Forests are essential to life on Earth, as they are a valuable natural resource that house various flora and fauna, provide wood, and also help to conserve soil and water and fight climate change.
          As forests transcend borders, their protection not only becomes the responsibility of one country but also the entire world.
          Efforts to protect, preserve, and restore forests were discussed by delegates from 27 countries during the First Asia Bonn Challenge High-Level Round-table Meeting held in Palembang, South Sumatra, on May 9-10.  
     The delegates also identified ways to collaborate to undertake forest landscape restoration (FLR) efforts to support the Bonn Challenge.
          The Bonn Challenge is a global effort to restore 150 million hectares of the world's deforested and degraded land areas by 2020 and 350 million hectares by 2030.
          Underlying the Bonn Challenge is the FLR approach, which aims to restore ecological integrity at the same time as improving human well-being through multifunctional landscapes.
          It is overseen by the Global Partnership on Forest Landscape Restoration, with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as its Secretariat.

Saturday, May 6, 2017


Jakarta, May 6, 2017(Antara) - There was no celebration for Jakarta's Governor-elect Anies Baswedan and his deputy, Sandiaga Uno, after the General Election Commission of Jakarta (KPU Jakarta) on May 5, officially confirmed that they won the second round regional head election (pilkada) held in Jakarta on April 19, 2017.
         Instead, they held a small gathering at the Museum of Bank Indonesia in Old Jakarta town to express gratitude to those who supported them during the pilkada and conveyed a message of unity to every Jakartan.
         The event was attended by among others, retired general, Prabowo Subianto; chairman of the Gerindra Party, Sohibul Iman; chairman of the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS); Aburizal Bakrie, former chairman of Golkar Party; and Fahmi Idris, former minister.
         Gerindra and PKS are the main supporter of Baswedan and Uno, or known as Anies-Sandi pair.
         "I and bother Anies are grateful to all of you for supporting us," Uno said.
          He hoped that the inhabitants of Jakarta, who were divided during the election, could unite again as the election was over.
          Baswedan said that the victory in the pilkada is in fact a victory of every Jakartan.
          Unifying all Jakartans and accommodating the public interests indiscriminately are among priorities for Anies-Sandi, who will be inaugurated as the Jakarta Governor and Deputy Governor for the 2017-2022 period in Oct.
         They also set up a synchronization team to translate their programs technically.
          "It is technical. The team does not draft new program but translate our planned programs in accordance with the Regional State Budget (APBD)," Baswedan stated.

Friday, May 5, 2017


Jakarta, May 5, 2017 (Antara) - Some 1,500 participants from 90 countries attended the World Press Freedom Day International Conference organized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in Jakarta from May 1 to 4, where they adopted the Jakarta Declaration, after examining the challenges facing media around the world during the meeting.
          The Jakarta Declaration basically warned of three major challenges to press freedom, notably safety of journalists, false news and freedom of speech on the Internet.
          In the 74-point Declaration, participants, comprising of journalists, editors, experts, government officials, press freedom advocates and academics, welcomed multi-stakeholder efforts made by the international community to enhance the protection of journalists and address the issue of impunity through the implementation of the U.N. Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity. 
     They recognized that the internet is a powerful medium for self-expression, which facilitates the ability of users to speak freely and in public interest.
          Therefore, they honored the journalists and media workers, who contribute to press freedom through their work and commitment, often at the risk of their safety and personal security.
          They also observed that the proliferation of falsified information and the phenomenon of "social-media bubbles" can polarize public debate, mislead whole segments of society and undermine professional journalism.

Thursday, May 4, 2017


Jakarta, May 4, 2017 (Antara) - A motion initiated by several lawmakers, particularly from the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDIP), Golkar, and the National Democrats (Nasdem) parties, to exercise inquiry rights on the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK), has received criticism from various parties, particularly from legal experts.
         The Association of Alumni of the Faculty of Law of the University of Indonesia (ILUNI FH UI) has noted that the planned inquiry was an obstruction of justice and could endanger the momentum of corruption eradication.
         If the inquiry is carried out, it could be seen as an intervention into the legal enforcement process by the House of Representatives (DPR) and could harm the independence of KPK, ILUNI FH UI said in a statement signed by its chairman, Ahmad Fikri Assegaf, on May 3.
        The ILUNI FH UI also criticized a mechanism deciding the motion to exercise the inquiry rights by the DPR during a plenary session at the Parliament Building, here, on April 28. 
    Despite objections by representatives of several political party factions, Fahri Hamzah, deputy house speaker and chairman of the plenary session, hurriedly announced that the meeting approved the inquiry on the performance of the anti-graft agency. 
   Political parties' factions in the DPR which refuse the inquiry motion are Gerindra, National Awakening (PKB), Democrats Party (PD), and the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS). Several members of the parties walked out to protest against the plenary session's chairman.
        Ahmad Muzani, Chairman of Gerindra Faction, regretted the move by the plenary meeting chairman. He believed that the chairman should have postponed the meeting and allowed lobbying prior to making a decision.

Monday, May 1, 2017


Jakarta, May 1, 2017 (Antara) - April 28, 2017, was a historic day for Indonesia and the Philippines as President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) and President Rodrigo Roa Duterte launched the Roll-on/Roll-off (Ro-Ro) ferry service that connects Davao and General Santos in the Philippines with Bitung in Indonesia's North Sulawesi Province.
         The connectivity is expected to help boost trade and people-to-people contact between the two neighboring countries in particularly and to promote economic development in Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Philippines-East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA), in general.  
    The Davao-General Santos-Bitung (D-G-B) route serviced weekly by the M/V Super Shuttle RoRo 12 cuts travelling time from Davao to Bitung from five weeks to two and a half days, excluding port stay.
          Operated by the Asian Marine Transport Corp., the vessel can load up to 500 twenty-footer containers of cargo.
         The new route will also lower freight costs to ¿35 thousand (US$700) per 20-foot container from the ¿100 thousand ($2,000) of the Davao-Manila-Jakarta route, Inquirer.Net ( wrote.
         During his remarks, Jokowi expressed his optimism over the new shipping route that provides faster and cheaper transportation services for people and goods.
       Jokowi believed that the Ro-Ro ferry service would provide new opportunities and businesses for people of both countries.
          Therefore, he expressed his appreciation to Duterte for his commitment toward the shipping service.
          "I would like to express my greatest gratitude to Duterte for his extraordinary commitment in realizing the route," Jokowi remarked.


 Jakarta, May 1 (Antara) - Just few hours after counting of ballot papers and the closing of 13,034 polling stations across Jakarta during the second round gubernatorial election held on April 19, quick counts conducted by several pollsters showed that most of the Jakartans decided to have a new governor and deputy governor.
    Based on the quick count conducted by Polmark, incumbent Basuki Tjahaja Purnama (Ahok) and his pair Djarot Saiful Hidayat, or known as Ahok-Djarot, collected 42.33 percent, while contender Anies Baswedan and Sandiaga Uno, or Anies-Sandi, won 57.67 percent. According to Indobarometer, Anies-Sandi won 58.50 percent and Ahok-Djarot won 41.50 percent.
         The next day, Jakarta General Election Commission (KPU Jakarta) uploaded the temporary results on its official website, showing 42.05 percent (2,351,245 votes) for the Ahok-Djarot pair and 57.95 percent (3,240,332 votes) for the Anies-Sandi pair.  
   The results were real, although it was not official, as KPU Jakarta was in the process of manual counting.
        On April 29 after completing the manual ballot recapitulation, KPU Jakarta announced that Anies-Sandi pair has emerged the winners of the Jakarta gubernatorial election (pilkada).
         Anies-Sandi won 57.96 percent (3,240,987 votes) from a total of 5,591,353 votes, Sumarno, chairman of the KPU Jakarta, said following a plenary meeting on recapitulation of ballot count.
         The pair defeated incumbent Ahok-Djarot, who collected 42.04 percent (2,350,366 votes).
           "We will officially announce the results on Friday (May 5), if there is no one filing a lawsuit disputing the results to the Constitutional Court (MK)," Sumarno stated.