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Indonesia & East Timor Digest

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January 26, 2024

Jakarta Globe - January 26, 2024

Whisnu Bagus Prasetyo, Jakarta – Several employees in Jakarta have voiced their grievances as their salaries for this month have experienced a decrease. This change is attributed to alterations in the calculation of personal income tax (PPh), effective since January 1, 2024,

Jakarta Globe - January 26, 2024

Monique Handa Shafira, Jakarta – The Finance Ministry's Directorate General of State Assets (DJKN) has introduced new rules allowing foreign nationals (WNAs) to take part in government auctions, even if they don't have a Taxpayer Identification Number (NPWP).

Tempo - January 26, 2024

Jakarta – The practice of illegal levies is rampant in the KPK detention center. It is evidence of poor supervision after the law was revised.

Benar News - January 26, 2024

Tria Dianti, Jakarta – Next month's presidential election in Indonesia will determine the fate of outgoing President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's gargantuan dream project of moving the country's capital to Borneo from overcrowded Jakarta.

Jakarta Globe - January 26, 2024

Agnes Valentina Christa, Jakarta – In the pursuit of achieving Golden Indonesia 2045, experts emphasize the critical role of stunting prevention in children. Renowned nutritionist Juwalita Surapsari highlights the importance of ensuring a minimum daily milk consumption of 500 milliliters, serving as a vital source of iron for children.

Jakarta Globe - January 26, 2024

Ichsan Ali, Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo calls for his statement, asserting his right to support candidates and engage in campaign activities, not to be turned into a controversy.

Jokowi said that the statement arose when a journalist asked him about the involvement of ministers in the campaign.

January 25, 2024

Jakarta Globe - January 25, 2024

Whisnu Bagus Prasetyo, Jakarta – Chief Investment Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan has refuted assertions made by former head of the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) Thomas Trikasih Lembong. Lembong claimed that Tesla's electric car factory no longer uses nickel but has switched to lithium ferro-phosphate (LFP).

Mongabay - January 25, 2024

Hans Nicholas Jong, Jakarta – Land conflicts nearly doubled under the administration of Indonesia's current president, Joko "Jokowi" Widodo, compared with his predecessor, driven largely by his prioritization of investors and infrastructure projects over local communities and the environment, a new report shows.

Jakarta Globe - January 25, 2024

Muhammad Aulia, Jakarta – The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) on Thursday detained two suspects in a graft scandal at the Manpower Ministry, a case that could implicate Muhaimin Iskandar, the current vice-presidential candidate.

Jakarta Globe - January 25, 2024

Ghandy Armansyah, Jakarta – Police on Thursday arrested a man suspected of attempting to set fire to a mosque in Tanjung Priok, North Jakarta, based on information provided by residents who had reviewed security camera footage.

Jakarta Globe - January 25, 2024

Ichsan Amin, Jakarta – The so-called "Nusantara Ring" corridor project is expected to become the new engine of Indonesia's economic growth, according to senior minister Airlangga Hartarto.

The Nusantara Ring encompasses the northern Java, southern Sumatra, the southern Sulawesi, and East Kalimantan. Each of these regions plays a vital role in the economy.

Jakarta Post - January 25, 2024

Radhiyya Indra, Jakarta – His name was mentioned in passing only twice during the fourth election debate on Sunday, but Thomas Lembong's presence has reverberated long after the vice presidential candidates wrapped up.

Bloomberg News - January 25, 2024

Karishma Vaswani – As deepfakes go, it's not a great one. Even so, the viral video of Indonesia's former president and dictator Suharto that was created using arti cial intelligence took the world's most populous Muslim nation by storm. It racked up millions of views on social media, and prompted hand-wringing about the dangers of using this kind of technology.

Jakarta Post - January 25, 2024

Yvette Tanamal, Jakarta – The failure to ensure that Israel acts in compliance with international law amid the stalled process toward realizing a two-state solution could further plunge the Middle East into a wider open conflict, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi has warned.

Channel News Asia - January 25, 2024

Rhea Yasmine Alis Haizan, Singapore/Jakarta – A 40 per cent to 75 per cent entertainment tax on the price of certain goods and services may soon be implemented in Indonesia, much to the displeasure of businesses and consumers, who say that the steep increase could push customers away from visiting affected establishments.

Jakarta Post Editorial - January 25, 2024

Jakarta – In last Sunday's second and final vice presidential debate, Gibran Rakabuming Raka questioned rival Muhaimin Iskandar's commitment to a cornerstone of Indonesia's industrial development strategy.

"[Are you] anti-nickel or what?" Gibran said in a poignant jab at Anies Baswedan's running mate.

Jakarta Post - January 25, 2024

Jakarta – A senior aide to the State Palace defended on Thursday a statement from President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo that a sitting president could "pick a side" in elections, as it had been a common practice among his predecessors in the Reform Era.

Tempo - January 25, 2024

Savero Aristia Wienanto, Jakarta – Yusril Ihza Mahendra, a member of Prabowo Subianto-Gibran Rakabuming Raka's winning team responded to criticism over President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's statement on president partiality during general elections.

Mongabay - January 25, 2024

Jaya Barends, Buru Island, Indonesia – At the beginning of November last year, Tamami's rice field lay vacant except for a herd of cattle grazing on the land. Like many rice farmers here on Buru Island in Indonesia's eastern Maluku region, 53-year-old Tamami set aside his field after the availability of water dried up.

Jakarta Post - January 25, 2024

Jakarta – Vice presidential candidate Gibran Rakabuming Raka recently responded to a viral social media post alleging that his grade point average (GPA) score was 2.3 out of 4, which his detractors see as a grade unfitting for a vice presidential candidate.

Jakarta Globe - January 25, 2024

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – Indonesia is aiming for a bilateral investment treaty with Tanzania amid the state-owned oil firm Pertamina's expansion in the East African country.

Jakarta Post - January 25, 2024

Jakarta – Anies Baswedan-Muhaimin Iskandar campaign team co-captain Sudirman Said said his team would not mobilize ministers for presidential campaign purposes, despite President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's permission.

Jakarta Globe - January 25, 2024

Antara, Jakarta – Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi recently walked out of the room when Israeli Permanent Representative to the UN Gilad Erdan addressed the organization's security body.

January 24, 2024

Jakarta Globe - January 24, 2024

Ichsan Ali, Jakarta – The Indonesian Air Force on Wednesday commissioned four brand new Super Hercules C-130J-30 aircraft in a ceremony attended by President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo and Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto.

Tabloid Jubi - January 24, 2024

Jayapura, Jubi – In response to the armed clash between the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB) and the Indonesian Military (TNI) and Police in Intan Jaya Regency, Central Papua Province, Frits Ramandey, the Head of the Papua Representative Office of the National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM Papua), stated that Yusak Sondegau (40), who lost his life during the inciden

Tabloid Jubi - January 24, 2024

Jayapura, Jubi – The Head of Cartenz Peace Operation, Sr. Comr. Faizal Ramadhani, stated that on Sunday (1/21/2024), the joint military/police forces shot three suspected members of the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB) in Intan Jaya Regency, Central Papua Province.

Jakarta Globe - January 24, 2024

Panji Satrio, Medan – Sorik lies weakened, emaciated, and struggling to breathe – a mirror of three other Sumatran tigers battling severe illnesses in Medan Zoo, North Sumatera. Sorik and two other tigers suffer from an incurable disease, while another one is still treatable.

Jakarta Globe - January 24, 2024

Ilham Oktafian, Jakarta – Social media personality Fransiska Candra Novitasari, popularly known as Siskaeee, was arrested at an apartment in Yogyakarta on Wednesday. She is one of nine women recently named as suspects in an ongoing police investigation into the production of pornographic videos.

Jakarta Globe - January 24, 2024

Faisal Maliki Baskoro, Jakarta – The Environment and Forestry Minister, Siti Nurbaya, has denied the statement made by vice-presidential candidate Mohammad Mahfud MD, who claimed that deforestation in Indonesia had reached 12.5 million hectares since 2013.

Jakarta Post Editorial - January 24, 2024

Jakarta – Food and energy, two resources crucial to our national stability, were rightly included on the list of topics for the second vice presidential debate on Sunday.

But on the issue of food, the debate was unenlightening, devoid of meaningful discussion on the fundamental problems of national food security.

Jakarta Globe - January 24, 2024

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – Indonesia has attracted a total of Rp 1,418 trillion (around $90.2 billion) in investment throughout 2023, surpassing what the government has targeted for that year.

Pulitzer Center - January 24, 2024

Adi Renaldi – Land grabbing, loss of traditional livelihoods, as well as rising health and environmental concerns are controversies hounding Indonesia's grand global ambitions for its nickel industry.

Jakarta Post - January 24, 2024

Tenggara Strategics, Jakarta – The Indonesian government has major work ahead for its electric vehicle (EV) ambitions as fewer than 1,000 units of fuel-based motorcycles were converted to electric ones in 2023, falling far short of the 50,000-unit target.

Jakarta Globe - January 24, 2024

Yustinus Paat, Jakarta – President Joko Widodo asserted on Wednesday that he possesses the right to take sides in elections and participate in campaign events, despite his responsibilities as the head of state.

Mongabay - January 24, 2024

Moh. Tamimi, Pekalongan, Indonesia – For decades, Sobirin provided for his family by picking flowers here on the north coast of Indonesia's Java Island. Now in his 70s, much of the farmer's income used to grow near the beach on a large plot of jasmine, Jasminum sambac, the so-called "queen of flowers" cherished by royal dynasties from Ancient Egypt to China's Sung Dynasty.

Jakarta Globe - January 24, 2024

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – Nickel-based batteries are still not losing popularity to lithium ferro-phosphate (LFP) in the electric vehicle (EV) market, according to Investment Minister Bahlil Lahadalia.

Tempo - January 24, 2024

Ikhsan Reliubun, Jakarta – Director of the Association for Elections and Democracy (Perludem), Khoirunnisa Agustyati, urged President Joko Widodo or Jokowi to withdraw his statement that the president and ministers could endorse any presidential candidate in the elections.

Tribun News - January 24, 2024

Malvyandie Haryadi, Jakarta – On Wednesday January 24, President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo stated that public officials from the president to ministers are allowed to take sides in the elections as long as they do not use state facilities.

Jakarta Globe - January 24, 2024

Thomas Rizal, Jakarta – Political analyst Ujang Komarudin from Al Azhar University Indonesia views vice presidential candidate Mohammad Mahfud MD's decision to resign from his position as the Chief Security Minister as an attempt to evade accountability for unresolved legal issues in Indonesia.

Tabloid Jubi - January 24, 2024

Jayapura, Jubi – In an armed confrontation with combined Indonesian Military (TNI) and Police forces on Sunday (21/1/2024) and Tuesday (23/1/2024), five members of the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB) in the Intan Jaya region were reported dead.

The individuals identified are Oni Kobagau, Jaringan Belau, Agustia, Ones, and Melkias Maisani.

Jakarta Globe - January 24, 2024

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – Indonesia wants to secure a trade deal with the European Union (EU) in hopes that Jakarta can compete with fellow ASEAN member Vietnam, particularly on footwear exports, according to a senior minister on Wednesday.

Jakarta Post - January 24, 2024

Yvette Tanamal, Jakarta – The brief appointment of Communications and Information Minister Budi Arie Setiadi as interim foreign minister has raised eyebrows amid reports of a cabinet split, even though the Foreign Ministry has waved off the issue and President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has insisted that his government remains united.

Jakarta Post - January 24, 2024

Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has sent a floral arrangement to Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) chairperson Megawati Soekarnoputri as a birthday gift for the party matriarch, who celebrated her 77th birthday on Tuesday.

Jakarta Globe - January 24, 2024

Ichsan Ali, Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo said on Wednesday that holding a public office does not restrict him from endorsing specific candidates or participating in campaign events.

He made these statements while attending an event alongside presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto, who has chosen the president's son as his running mate.

Tempo - January 24, 2024

Antara, Jakarta – Throughout 2023, the State Asset Management Institute (LMAN) has spent Rp1.426 trillion for the development of the Indonesian Capital City (IKN) in East Kalimantan. The amount consists of Rp1.01 trillion to acquire land for road access, and Rp415.88 billion for developing the Central Government Core Area (KIPP).

South China Morning Post - January 24, 2024

Amy Sood – Indonesia's most famous rock band, Slank, has thrown its star power behind presidential candidate Ganjar Pranowo in a high-profile snub to President Joko Widodo, marking a departure from its staunch support for the leader over the past decade.

Jakarta Post - January 24, 2024

Yohana Belinda, Jakarta – Indonesia needs to increase its sugar production by almost 300 percent from the current amount by 2030 if the country wants to achieve self-sufficiency, including feeding its bioethanol ambition.

Tabloid Jubi - January 24, 2024

Jayapura, Jubi – The second environmental impact analysis (AMDAL) process by PT Freeport Indonesia is currently in progress, with the company expressing optimism that everything will proceed as planned.

Macao News - January 24, 2024

Lusa – The Chinese non-governmental organisation GX Foundation launched a pilot project to prevent and combat dengue fever in Timor-Leste on Tuesday with a donation to the Timorese ministry of health.

January 23, 2024

ABC News - January 23, 2024

Vonia Vieira, Dili – Joaquim Fonseca's daily life depends on the internet. So the IT professional, based in Timor-Leste's capital Dili, has a problem.

"Every day, somehow, the internet fails," he told the ABC. "Downloading small files is difficult. Even downloading a page to read the news [is hard]."