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Nusantara project leader resigns, Economist: A negative signal for IKN's sustainability

Tempo - June 3, 2024

Riri Rahayu, Jakarta – Economist and Director of the Center of Economic and Law Studies (Celios) Bhima Yudhistira commented on the resignation of the IKN Authority Head Bambang Susantono. According to Bhima, the resignation is a negative signal for the new capital development, Nusantara Capital City (IKN) in East Kalimantan.

Notably, Bambang did not resign by himself but together with his deputy, Dhony Rahajoe. "The project's sustainability is questioned," Bhima told Tempo on Monday, June 3, 2024. "This leaves a less-than-stellar reflection, a negative signal for the sustainability of the IKN project, especially under the new government."

According to Bhima, this situation will sow doubts among both domestic and foreign investors about funding the new capital project. investors, both domestic and foreign.

"This signals the existence of a problem that prompted the head of IKN Authority to step down. Whether it was pressure or the knowledge that they were working on an impossible task," he said.

Minister of State Secretary Pratikno announced the resignation of Bambang Susantono and Dhony Rahajoe at the Presidential Palace in Jakarta, today, Monday. Bambang steps down after only a little over two years in office.

After Bambang's resignation, President Joko Widodo or Jokowi appointed Minister of Public Works and Housing (PUPR) Basuki Hadimuljono as Acting Head of the IKN Authority. Basuki is paired with Deputy Minister of Agrarian Affairs and Spatial Planning Raja Juli Antoni as his deputy.

Pratikno did not reveal the precise reasons why the two top IKN officials resigned from their respective positions. However, he admitted that it was not sudden, and that "it's a long-time discussion."

The appointed Head of the IKN Authority, Basuki Hadimuljono, is confident that the change in leadership will leave the investment process in IKN undisturbed.

"I don't think there is a problem. Hopefully, it will boost the (investors') trust instead because those who replace (Bambang and Dhony) are a minister and vice minister," said Basuki on Monday. He's also optimistic that the resignation will not affect IKN's construction as development phases 1 and 2 have reached 80 percent completion.

Source: https://en.tempo.co/read/1875371/nusantara-project-leader-resigns-economist-a-negative-signal-for-ikns-sustainabilit