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Foreign media highlight Luhut's dual citizenship offer for Indonesian diaspora

Tempo - May 1, 2024

Sita Planasari, Jakarta – Foreign media on Tuesday highlighted the Indonesian Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Pandjaitan's statement that the government plans to offer dual citizenship to former Indonesian citizens to attract more skilled workers.

British news agency Reuters, Malaysian media The Stars and US media Bloomberg reported Luhut as saying this during a meeting with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, who pledged US$1.7 billion in investment in Indonesia.

"We also invited the Indonesian diaspora, and we will soon give them dual citizenship," he said. "This, I think, will bring highly skilled Indonesians back to Indonesia."

Indonesia does not recognize dual citizenship for adults. According to Indonesian law, a child with two passports must choose one and renounce the other when they turn 18.

The country seeks to have nearly 3,000 youth ready to work as developers by 2029 and an artificial intelligence center in Bali, he added at the briefing.

According to data from the Directorate General of Immigration, nearly 4,000 Indonesians became Singapore citizens between 2019 and 2022.

It added that as many as 1,000 Indonesian students aged between 25 and 35 have decided to become Singaporean citizens each year.

The immigration agency did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the plan to allow dual citizenship.

Indonesian law currently prohibits dual citizenship, although the country is facing an outflow of workers seeking better job prospects abroad.

According to the statistics agency, the local unemployment rate stands at 5.3%, and the unemployment rate for those aged 15 to 24 stands at 19.4%.

The issue of dual citizenship caused controversy in 2016 when Indonesian President Joko Widodo removed Arcandra Tahar from the energy and mining minister post after less than a month in office following reports that he held both US and Indonesian passports.

Source: https://en.tempo.co/read/1862803/foreign-media-highlight-luhuts-dual-citizenship-offer-for-indonesian-diaspor