Bogor. President Joko Widodo has assured the public and would-be investors that the government’s planned one-stop investment licensing service, which forms part of his administration’s efforts to ease the process of securing business permits, will become operational this year.
“I think more than 80 percent of regions [in Indonesia] are already capable of running the licensing service. There may be setbacks here and there, but they should all be settled this year,” Joko said on Friday.
He added that officials in charge were still working out a few kinks in the system before setting up offices around the country to implement and monitor the program.
Last month Joko unveiled the one-stop investment licensing service, which he hopes would be a milestone in smoothing investment procedures for existing and prospective companies.
The government aims to bolster economic growth by between 5.6 percent to 5.8 percent this year.
Indonesia saw its economy expand by only 5.02 percent in 2014, the slowest pace in five years. Growth reached 5.58 percent in 2013.
Investments account for 31 percent of the economy, the second largest contributor after domestic consumption.
A similar initiative was launched during President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s term in office. But poor coordination among ministries, local governments and other state bodies limited the services to several basic permits.
Joko promised to improve the system during his presidential campaign last year, aimed at pleasing the business community.
Twenty-one ministries and government bodies have each delegated licensing representatives, or liaison officers, to the Indonesian Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) headquarters. The BKPM rolled out a trial run of the service with 66 liaison officers on Jan. 15.
Indonesia rose three places to rank 114th on the World Bank’s Doing Business 2015 index, which measures business regulations and competitiveness in 189 economies worldwide.
The country still lags behind many of its Southeast Asian neighbors, including Vietnam, which landed in 78th place on the World Bank index, and Malaysia, which took the number-18 spot.