Tangerang, Banten. Home Affairs Minister Tjahjo Kumolo has reiterated his call to local governments to avoid hampering businesses that are directly involved in developing their regions.
"Do not allow it to be like [with] Meikarta. The district's head has already issued permissions, but they were blocked by West Java's deputy governor," Tjahjo said in his speech to members of the Real Estate Indonesia (REI) and the Association of Regional Administrations (Apeksi) on Thursday (15/09).
He referred to West Java Deputy Governor Deddy Mizwar, who threatened to block Meikarta township project in Bekasi.
The minister said there are no regulations that require Meikarta, which is developed by Lippo Group — one of Indonesia's largest property firms — to obtain any permits from the provincial government.
"Now that the private sector wants to improve the region, it faces obstacles in the form of licensing or inhibiting policies. This should be scrutinized as soon as possible," Tjahjo said.
President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's Nawacita development program puts an emphasis on the private sector's involvement, as public funding is limited.
Tjahjo said the provincial, district and city governments should be in sync when they implement the program. While governors, district heads or mayors may have some political or electoral promises to fulfill, their actions must be in line with the central government's policies, he added.
When a region becomes a new economic center, the private sector plays a big role in developing housing for incoming workers.
Permits and licenses are issued by mayors and district heads, as they know their regions best, Tjahjo said.
"I think this is what we should look at together. Private investment in the regions must be fully supported. In accordance with existing rules, the authority to regulate it is with districts and cities. [Contradictory] gubernatorial regulations should be revised," he said.
Tjahjo added that the president has ordered bureaucratic processes and reforms to be fast-tracked for the sake of more effective and efficient central and local governance.
According to the minister, the governments should also support the private sector to make it contribute more to the national economy.
"The president requested that the private sector be empowered. Policies of regional and local authorities should not inhibit it. There is a need to cut down the number of rules, as well as to drop or revise some of the local regulations," he said.
The Jakarta Globe and Meikarta are both affiliated with Lippo Group.