The government claimed that the country had made significant progress in the past few years, a feat that should have prevented the country from being included in the list of “failed states”.
Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Djoko Su-yanto said that the 2012 Failed State Index (FSI), which put Indonesia on the threshold of being a failed state, had painted an inaccurate picture of the country.
“Indonesia is a state that runs very well, from the central to local levels. We have recorded a remarkable 6.5 percent of economic growth and have more than US$115 billion in foreign exchange reserves. What kind of indicators did they use to determine a failed state?” Djoko told The Jakarta Post on Wednesday.
Djoko was commenting on the 2012 FSI compiled by Washington-based non-profit organization Fund for Peace.
The study put Indonesia in 63rd place out of 178 countries worldwide, down one position from last year’s 64th position.
In 2010, Indonesia was ranked 61st.
Indonesia has shown slight improvements in its score over the last two years. In 2012, Indonesia got 80.6 points, lower than 2011’s 81.6 and 2010’s 83.1.
A high score indicates high pressure on the state, which also translates into a higher risk of instability, according to a statement released on the Fund for Peace’s website
The 2012 FSI ranked 178 countries using 12 social, economic and political indicators of pressure on the state, along with over 100 sub-indicators.
These include issues such as uneven development, state legitimacy, group grievances, and human rights.
Each indicator is rated on a scale of 1-10, based on the analysis of millions of publicly available documents, other quantitative data, and assessments by analysts, the organization said.
The FSI groups states with points higher than 90 as “alert”; between 60 and 90 as “warning”; 30-60 “moderate”; and below 30 as “sustainable”.
There were 91 countries in the “warning” zone, including Indonesia.
The release of this year’s FSI came amid a wave of violence in Papua.
Reports said that at least 18 people were killed in Papua and West Papua in the past few months, with the government continuing to blame “separatists” for the numerous shootings of civilians in the region.
The country has also seen escalating violence against religious minorities in the country.
Political analyst Yudi Latief said that all indicators could point to the fact that Indonesia was indeed a failed state.
“The failure to provide decent public facilities, the rampant political corruption, and the absence of social services, are part of the indicators of a failed state. Frankly, Indonesia has those too,” he said.
Djoko denounced those who abused the survey result to “attack” the government.
“Look at our democratic life, such as press freedom. Even though there are shortcomings, we are supposed to be grateful for what we have today. Don’t be cynical, and let’s join together help build this nation,” the minister said.
Yopie Hidayat, the spokesman for Vice President Boediono, shared Djoko’s opinion.
“I, as a person who has been working for the government, think that we have done our best in bringing this country toward a better condition,” he said.
Yopie said the report should be considered as an impetus for everybody to work to improve the nation.
“The survey was conducted by a foreign institution, we can’t deny this. We are not running together with other nations; we are competing with other countries,” Yopie added.
The 2012 FSI, which was the eighth edition of the annual study, ranked Somalia as number one for a fifth consecutive year, citing widespread lawlessness, ineffective government, terrorism, insurgency, crime, and well-publicized pirate attacks against foreign vessels.
Finland remained the most stable, with its Scandinavian neighbors Sweden and Denmark rounding out the best three rankings. All three nations benefit from strong social and economic indicators, paired with excellent provision of public services and respect for human rights and the rule of law.