Govt replaces BP Batam board members after criticism
The Jakarta Post
The government has made changes to the board of Batam Indonesia Free Trade Zone Authority (BP Batam), which manages the Batam free-trade zone, to regain investors' trusts.
The overhaul comes after businesspeople expressed their dissatisfaction with Batam’s dual-governance system, which they said was a headache for potential investors.
"We appreciate BP Batam’s old management, but we need to hear suggestions from private companies, too, because they are the ones who invest and do business there," Coordinating Economic Minister Darmin Nasution said in an inauguration ceremony in Jakarta on Thursday.
Located just an hour’s ride by ferry from Singapore, Batam refers to both an island and a municipality in the province of Riau Islands.
The region is managed by two authorities: BP Batam, which has the authority to distribute land for industry, issue business licenses and develop infrastructure, and the municipal administration, which is in charge of public services and administrative affairs.
To build a factory, for example, an investor must secure a land allotment from BP Batam, while at the same time applying for a building permit from the municipal government.
The government appointed the economic coordinating minister's secretary, Lukita Dinarsyah Tuwo, as BP Batam chairman, replacing Hatanto Reksodipoetro.
Meanwhile, Purwiyanto became the deputy chairperson for finance, replacing Sigit Priadi Pramudito.
Yusmar Anggadinata replaced Junino Jahja as deputy for planning and development, while Dwiyanto Eko Winaryo took Eko Santoso Budianto's position as deputy for business facilities.
Bambang Purwanto replaced Gusmardi Bustami as deputy for general affairs and human resources.
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