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Indonesia & East Timor Digest

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July 12, 2024

Jakarta Post - July 12, 2024

Jakarta – Certain connecting roads in South Lampung regency, Lampung, appear to still be damaged despite President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's visit last year, following a viral video showing the worsening conditions of the roads in Sumatra's southernmost province.

Tempo - July 12, 2024

Ilona Estherina, Eka Yudha, Jakarta – Political observer Adi Prayitno doubts the future of Indonesia's new capital city project, or Nusantara Capital City (IKN), after the government transfer from President Joko Widodo or Jokowi to Prabowo Subianto. The difference in the priority programs between both leaders will potentially hamper the continuity of IKN construction.

Jakarta Globe - July 12, 2024

Alfi Dinilhaq, Jakarta – Cybersecurity expert Alfons Tanujaya has called for a decisive response from the government to online gambling operators who have hacked government websites in retaliation for the crackdown on online gambling.

Jakarta Globe - July 12, 2024

Vinnilya Huanggrio, Jakarta – The government has cut off access to online gambling networks operating from Thailand and Cambodia, an official said in a recent interview.

Efforts to break the cycle of regional gambling syndicates in Indonesia began three weeks ago, said Usman Kansong, a director general with the Ministry of Communication and Informatics.

Jakarta Post - July 12, 2024

Jakarta – Kaesang Pangarep, chairman of the Indonesian Solidarity Party (PSI), suggested that his party would not be joining the Golkar-led coalition in the Banten gubernatorial election to support frontrunner Airin Rachmi Diany.

Jakarta Globe - July 12, 2024

Zhulfakar, Jakarta – The Golkar Party will appoint a businessman as a running mate for Kaesang Pangarep, the youngest son of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo, if he runs in the Jakarta gubernatorial election in November, party chairman Airlangga Hartarto said on Thursday.

Mongabay - July 12, 2024

Hans Nicholas Jong, Jakarta – Activists allege that two of the world's biggest pulp and paper companies have violated their zero-deforestation pledge by clearing natural forests and peatlands in Indonesia.

Kompas.com - July 12, 2024

Shela Octavia, Jessi Carina, Jakarta – TNI (Indonesian military) Commander General Agus Subiyanto is considered to have been too hasty in concluding that there was no involvement of TNI personnel in the fatal fire at the home of Tribrata TV reporter Rico Sempurna Pasaribu in Karo regency, North Sumatra.

Tempo - July 12, 2024

Ilona Estherina, Jakarta – Indonesia's government has no immediate plans to revise the latest import regulations, according to Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartarto. The current regulations are outlined in the Trade Minister's Regulation No. 8 of 2024, which came into effect on May 17, 2024.

Jakarta Globe - July 12, 2024

Antara, Jakarta – Ridwan Kamil, the curator of the new capital city Nusantara (IKN), announced that the core area, comparable in size to Jakarta's National Monument (Monas), is expected to be completed by August.

Sydney Morning Herald - July 12, 2024

Zach Hope and Amilia Rosa – Consider yourself a "quality" tourist? Bali, Australia's favourite jaunt, has set an easy bar for qualification: follow the rules (the important ones at least) and be respectful.

This year the Balinese have added another, exceedingly modest, condition. And it is already being violated by about half the island's foreign visitors.

Jakarta Post - July 12, 2024

Australia's BHP Group will temporarily suspend its Nickel West operations and West Musgrave project from October, the miner said on Thursday, as it reels from a plunge in metal prices and an oversupply in the global market.

The world's largest listed miner intends to review its decision to temporarily suspend its Western Australia nickel operations by February 2027.

Jakarta Post Editorial - July 12, 2024

Jakarta – Over the past two weeks, we have heard the bad news of the sudden dismissal of a medical school dean in Surabaya, East Java. From Medan, good news has circulated about a number of children recovering after successful heart surgery at the Adam Malik General Hospital in the North Sumatra capital.

Tempo - July 12, 2024

Riri Rahayu, Jakarta – Indonesian President Joko Widodo or Jokowi issued Presidential Regulation (Perpres) No. 75 of 2024 concerning the Acceleration of Development of the Nusantara Capital City (IKN) on Thursday, July 11, 2024. This decree outlines several key measures to attract investors and expedite the construction process.

Tempo - July 12, 2024

Putri Safira Pitaloka, Michelle Gabriela, Jakarta – President Joko Widodo or Jokowi emphasized that the new capital transfer from Jakarta to Nusantara Capital City (IKN) won't be forced before the infrastructure is ready.

July 11, 2024

Tempo Editorial - July 11, 2024

Jakarta – President Joko Widodo's decision to force through an allocation of Rp71 trillion to cover the costs of the free milk and nutritious meal program in the 2025 Draft State Budget is inappropriate. As well as potentially being a violation of regulations, this kind of arbitrary policy ignores the significant burden on state finances next year.

Jakarta Post - July 11, 2024

Aditya Hadi, Jakarta – Indonesia has set its sights on ratifying a preferential trade agreement (PTA) with Iran, with many expecting it to open doors for local products to markets in Central Asia, South Asia and the Middle East, but experts have urged caution over its geopolitical situation and sanctions from Western countries.

Fulcrum - July 11, 2024

Astrid Meilasari-Sugiana, Gunardi Endro and Siwage Dharma Negara – Public expectations for corruption eradication will never be met unless fundamental reforms are implemented within Indonesia's Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) and other law enforcement agencies, including the National Police and the Attorney General's Office.

Reuters - July 11, 2024

Jakarta – Indonesia said it is beginning to recover data that had been encrypted in a major ransomware attack last month which affected more than 160 government agencies.

Jakarta Globe - July 11, 2024

Bella Evanglista, Jakarta – Redma Gita Wirawasta, Chairman of the Indonesian Filament Yarn and Fiber Producers Association (Apsyfi), said that despite strong consumer demand for textiles, the market is dominated by Chinese imports, leading to the closure of many local textile companies.

Sydney Morning Herald - July 11, 2024

Sandy Yule – When Melbourne-born Helen Hill, an outstanding social activist, scholar and academic, died on May 7, 2024, at the age of 79, the Timorese government sent its Minister for Education, Dulce de Jesus Soares, to deliver a moving eulogy at the funeral service at Church of All Nations in Carlton.

Jakarta Globe - July 11, 2024

Herman, Jakarta – In an effort to curb airfare hikes, the Indonesian government plans to implement duty exemptions and ease restrictions on specific imported goods vital to aviation, alongside tax incentives and a revised tariff structure.

Tempo - July 11, 2024

Han Revanda Putra, Jakarta – Chairperson of the Indonesian Textile Association (API) Jemmy Kartiwa Sastraatmadja urged the government to limit imports of textiles and textile products from more than 700 Harmonized System (HS) codes.

Jakarta Globe - July 11, 2024

Celvin Moniaga Sipahutar, Jakarta – Chief Security Minister Hadi Tjahjanto confirmed on Thursday that the upcoming simultaneous elections for governors, mayors, and regents will proceed as planned.

Indonesia will elect 38 governors and more than 500 mayors and regents across the country on November 27.

Jakarta Post - July 11, 2024

Dio Suhenda, Jakarta – Authorities are investigating 11 faculty members at Lambung Mangkurat University (ULM) who have been accused of violating academic ethics to earn their professorships, as public pressure rises on the government to sanction academics of similar cases plaguing the country's higher education.

Tempo - July 11, 2024

Ilona Estherina, Jakarta – Executive Director of the Institute for Development of Economics and Finance (INDEF), Esther Sri Astuti, said the construction of Nusantara Capital City, or IKN burdens the State Budget.

Esther said other programs such as President-elect Prabowo Subianto's free meal program also burden state funds, but no more than the new capital project.

Jakarta Globe - July 11, 2024

Irfandi, Heru Andriyanto, Makassar – The government has announced vacancies for new commissioners of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK), but the selection committee reported on Thursday that only one woman has applied among the 79 applicants so far.

Bella Caledonia - July 11, 2024

Steve Rushton – Indigenous people in West Papua face systematic murder and destruction of their lands. They were colonised by Indonesia in the 1960s. West Papua is the western part of the island of New Guinea – home to the world's third largest rainforest.

East Asia Forum - July 11, 2024

Saskia E Wieringa – Despite a long history of acceptance of trans and same-sex practices, homosexuality in Indonesia is currently framed as deriving from the West, and as alien to the country's traditions and majority religion, Islam.

Jakarta Post - July 11, 2024

Apriadi Gunawan, Medan – North Sumatra Police named on Thursday a third suspect allegedly involved in an arson attack that killed a journalist and his family in Karo regency in the province.

"We have named B as a new suspect in the case," provincial police chief Comr. Gen. Agung Setya Imam Effendi said on Thursday, identifying the person by his initial.

Tempo - July 11, 2024

Tempo.Co, Jakarta – The Judicial Commission (KY) reacted to the acquittal of former Langkat Regent Terbit Rencana Perangin Angin by the Stabat District Court in the case of human trafficking (TPPO). The panel of judges declared that Terbit Rencana had not been proven guilty according to the prosecution's case and released him on Monday, July 8, 2024.

Agence France-Presse - July 11, 2024

Jakarta – Former agriculture minister Syahrul Yasin Limpo was jailed for 10 years on Thursday after he was found guilty of misappropriating more than $900,000 of public funds.

The Jakarta Corruption Court found the Nasdem Party politician guilty of ordering officials in his ministry to send him money from state coffers, some of which was used for his personal expenses.

Jakarta Globe - July 11, 2024

Iman Rahman Cahyadi, Jakarta – Several websites belonging to the central and local governments were compromised by hackers on Thursday in what appears to be a retaliatory attack against the ongoing crackdown on gambling apps and websites.

Jakarta Globe - July 11, 2024

Antara, Jakarta – Investment Minister and Head of the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) Bahlil Lahadalia is advocating for the extension of gold miner Freeport Indonesia's (PTFI) Special Mining Permit (IUPK) before President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's term ends in October.

Benar News - July 11, 2024

Nazarudin Latif, Jakarta – Indonesia will go ahead with planned Independence day events next month at its new capital site in Borneo despite massive construction delays, including the lack of a clean drinking water network, officials said Thursday.

Jakarta Globe - July 11, 2024

Jakarta – The national petrochemical industry is also in need of protection from the rush of imported plastic raw materials just like the textile industry after the 2024 Trade Ministry regulation entered into force. This is crucial to ensure the sustainability of the domestic industry and also to convince companies who wish to make major expansions to meet the domestic demand.

Crikey.com - July 11, 2024

Anton Nilsson – The suspected killing by fire of an Indonesian journalist last month is just the latest case of reporters in the country being intimidated for their work, journalists and researchers tell Crikey.

Jakarta Post - July 11, 2024

Radhiyya Indra, Jakarta – As public anger over the failure to prevent the ransomware attack on a temporary national data center facility in late June starts to wane, experts and civil groups have urged the government to be transparent about its progress in recovering the impacted databases.

Reuters - July 11, 2024

Jakarta – Indonesian President-elect Prabowo Subianto will allow the nation's debt-to-GDP ratio to rise to 50 per cent provided his administration can boost tax revenues, the Financial Times reported citing one of his closest advisers.

Kompas.com - July 11, 2024

Nirmala Maulana Achmad, Aryo Putranto Saptohutomo, Jakarta – Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI) Director Muhammad Isnur has questioned why a Presidential Letter (Surpres) on the Draft National Police Law (RUU Polri) has been issued before a problem inventory list (DIM) has been drafted or study of the bill.

Jakarta Globe - July 11, 2024

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – An American government official said Thursday that the promised JETP money worth billions of dollars meant to help Indonesia's energy transition is already moving.

Antara News - July 11, 2024

Jakarta – Coordinating Ministry for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs stated that the Indonesian Armed Forces' (TNI's) dual functions contained in the TNI Bill will not bring the state institution into the New Order era.

Jakarta Globe - July 11, 2024

Muhammad Aulia Rahman, Jakarta – Former Agriculture Minister Syahrul Yasin Limpo offered an apology to National Democratic Party (Nasdem) Chairman Surya Paloh shortly after a court hearing on Thursday, where he was sentenced to 10 years in prison for corruption.

July 10, 2024

Jakarta Globe - July 10, 2024

Muhammad Ghafur Fadillah, Vinnilya, Jakarta – The financial downturn globally, exacerbated by recent elections, has dampened fundraising activities in Indonesia's capital market, with total funds raised amounting to Rp 100 trillion ($6.16 billion) as of July 5.

Mongabay - July 10, 2024

Hans Nicholas Jong, Jakarta – NGOs working with Indonesian smallholder farmers have developed a set of guidelines aimed at helping oil palm farmers prove that their products are deforestation-free, allowing them a foothold in markets increasingly demanding sustainably produced goods.

Kompas.com - July 10, 2024

Adhyasta Dirgantara, Ihsanuddin, Jakarta – TNI (Indonesian military) Commander General Agus Subiyanto has bragged that TNI soldiers are needed everywhere by the government and society.

He gave as an example, the TNI being needed by the Ministry of Agriculture (Kementan) to build rice fields in the context of the food estate program.

Human Rights Monitor - July 10, 2024

Members of the Indonesian Navy (TNI AL) have been accused of intimidating journalists while covering activities in Jalan Bubara, Klaligi Village, Sorong City, on 9 July 2024.

Jubi Papua - July 10, 2024

Pes Yanengga, Jayapura – Papuan students have called on President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo to immediately withdraw TNI (Indonesian military) and Polri (Indonesian police) troops from Puncak regency, Central Papua Province. According to the students, the presence of non-organic troops has triggered an increase in violence against civilians.

Tempo - July 10, 2024

Ikhsan Reliubun, Jakarta – A senior economist from the University of Indonesia (UI) Faisal Basri said he's skeptical that the global ultrarich would deposit their funds in Indonesia, in response to the government's plan to establish a family office in the country.

"Stop daydreaming," said Faisal, in West Jakarta on Tuesday, July 9, 2024.

Jakarta Globe - July 10, 2024

Muhammad Aulia Rahman, Jakarta – The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) has uncovered allegations of extortion by locals towards tourists in Raja Ampat, Southwest Papua, with suspected amounts reaching staggering figures.