Fajar Pebrianto, Jakarta – President Joko Widodo, or Jokowi, on Tuesday, withdrew the government's plan to substantially increase the entry fee to Central Java's Buddhist temple, Borobudur, from the current Rp50,000 (around US$3) to Rp750,000 (roughly US$50).
The President's decision was informed by Public Works and Housing Minister Basuki Hadimuljono following a limited meeting with the President.
"The point is there will be no increase," said Minister Basuki at the Presidential Palace on June 14.
This effectively means that entry fees into the UNESCO world heritage site will remain at Rp50,000 for locals and US$25 for international tourists. Meanwhile, students will only be charged Rp5,000.
Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan initially announced the government's plan but recently said he would postpone it to avoid infuriating a large part of society.
"We will postpone it. Minister Luhut already instructed me to do so and prevent it from being dragged to other aspects," said Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo on June 7.
However, the government assured that the number of visitors will be restricted to 1,200 people each day. The visitors will have to book the tickets online and they are also not allowed to step into the temple area without special footwear, which is aimed to preserve the fragile stones of Borobudur.