The Jakarta Post
President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo officiated on Friday the inauguration of the Mandalika Special Economic Zone (KEK) on Mandalika Beach, Central Lombok regency, West Nusa Tenggara.
“KEK Mandalika is expected to become a special tourist area with international standards that will make us proud,” Jokowi said during his speech to officially open the 1,175-hectare KEK.
KEK Mandalika is operated by the Indonesia Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC).
The event was attended by several ministers, including Coordinating Economic Minister Darmin Nasution, who is also chairman of the National KRK Council; State-owned Enterprises Minister Rini Soemarno, Tourism Minister Arief Yahya, Agrarian, Agrarian and Spatial Planning Minister Sofyan Djalil and West Nusa Tenggara (NTB) Governor Zainul Majdi.
Previously, ITDC president director Abdulbar M. Mansoer expressed his optimism that KEK Mandalika would help improve residents’ welfare.
Read also: Minister inaugurates KEK Palu
At least 10 new businesses, such as homestays, restaurants, cafes and retail shops, have been opened since construction started on the special economic zone.
“The number of businesses will continue to grow in line with the development of the area,” he said, adding that in the next five years, KEK Mandalika was expected to create more than 5,000 jobs.
ITDC is currently developing basic infrastructure in the area, including 17-kilometer roads inside the special zone, clean water pipelines and electricity networks. (bbn)