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Jakarta Post

Indonesia sets eyes on East Kalimantan for new capital

  • Ghina Ghaliya and N. Adri

    The Jakarta Post

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Jakarta and Balikpapan   /   Sat, May 18, 2019   /  09:35 am
The Jakarta Post Image
An aerial view of Balikpapan-Samarinda toll road that divides Bukit Soeharto, East Kalimantan, is taken on May 7, 2019. The government said the forest park, which is named after the country's former dictator Soeharto, is among the most favorable locations to become a new capital city. (Tribun Kaltim/Fachmi Rachman )

Following the trips of President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo to Kalimantan in his quest to find a new capital city, the government has inclined to pick Bukit Soeharto in East Kalimantan, which is seen as a more favorable option. With an international airport and a seaport, the province is more promising than Central Kalimantan, which is consisted of vast fire-prone peat forests.  National Development Planning Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro said the only weakness of East Kalimantan was that several areas near river upstreams were prone to floods and lack of clean water system. The location in Central Kalimantan, he said, is too far from the seaport, had limited availability of groundwater resources as there was only river water available, and had peat in most of its areas that are vulnerable to forest and land fires. Bambang said the government might have to build par...