Jokowi bows to members of the House of Representatives after his speech on Friday. (Antara Photo/Sigid Kurniawan)

Jokowi Seeks Approval From Parliament to Move Capital to Kalimantan


AUGUST 16, 2019

Jakarta. President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo on Friday asked for the House of Representatives' approval to relocate the Indonesian capital from Jakarta to a city on Kalimantan Island.  

Jokowi's request formed part of his annual State of the Nation speech. Clad in the gilded traditional attire of the Sasak tribe, he said, "Indonesia is not only Jakarta, not only Java. Indonesia is Sabang, is Merauke, is Miangas, is Rote," Jokowi said.

The four regions respectively represent the westernmost, easternmost, northernmost and southernmost points of Indonesia. 

"Our development must be Indonesia-centric, it has to be enjoyed by everyone across the archipelago," said. 

The president also said the success of the development depends on support from all political parties, including the opposition.

"I am asking for permission from you, members of the House of Representatives, to relocate our capital to Kalimantan," Jokowi said.

"The new capital should not only represent the identity of our nation but should also be a symbol of development, economic equality and fairness," he said.

During a cabinet meeting to discuss the relocation of the capital earlier this month, three options in East Kalimantan, Central Kalimantan and South Kalimantan were presented to the president. 

Jokowi will make his final selection later this month. He plans to start the relocation process in 2024, the last year of his presidency.

The government wants the House of Representatives to pass the legislation supporting the move by next year. Construction of the new capital is set to begin in 2021.