The Jakarta Post
President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo took his huge vision for Indonesia’s new capital to the stage in Abu Dhabi on Monday as he invited nations and businesses from around the world to invest in the country’s soon-to-be-built administrative hub, which will replace Jakarta.
During his visit to the capital city of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Jokowi delivered his keynote speech at the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW), in which he mentioned the new capital city.
“We invite the world to bring the best technology, the best innovation and the best wisdom to [Indonesia’s] new capital,” Jokowi said as quoted in a statement released by the Presidential Palace.
Jokowi said that Indonesia had 1.4 million civil servants working for the central government and with all of their family members combined, around 6 to 7 million people would move to the new capital.
“We do not want to just build a small-scale administrative capital, but a smart metropolis since the population will be three times that of Paris, 10 times that of Washington DC; it will even equal the population of New York and London,” he said.
The development of the new capital must be supported with the latest technology and the city at the same time must be a place for innovation and creativity and be environmentally friendly, and a place that provides happiness to its inhabitants, Jokowi said.
With a large population that would occupy the territory, he went on, it was important to pay attention to the urban lifestyle in the 21st century that was low-carbon and environmentally responsible.
“The development of the new capital will emphasize the importance of overcoming social problems, such as wasteful lifestyles, by building a new city that is friendly for all to adopt efficient and low-carbon lifestyles oriented to public transportation and pedestrians, and close to nature,” he said.
“Renewable energy and clean technology will produce sustainable lives for social and economic development.”
Jokowi also addressed his initial arguments in relocating the capital from Jakarta, namely that it was also a solution to equitable development in Indonesia. The capital Jakarta, he said, had become one of the major cities that contributed significantly to the national economy.
“In a country that has more than 17 thousand islands, the concept of equitable development is needed so that development can be felt by all the people of Indonesia. This is what we call Indonesia-centric,” he added.
In August last year, Jokowi announced its decision to move the capital city from overcrowded and congested Jakarta. Part of North Penajam Paser regency and part of Kutai Kertanegara regency in East Kalimantan will be the site of the country’s new capital.