Indonesia is relocating its capital city. And the proposed location is in the province of East Kalimantan on the island of Borneo, near the cities of Balikpapan and Samarinda. This strategic location is in the geographic center of Indonesia.
The President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo announced this new location to replace the current capital city, Jakarta, whose sustainability is a huge cause of concern. Jakarta, which is home to around 10 million people, is fast sinking in the Java Sea due to over-extraction of groundwater. According to reports, it is one of the fastest-sinking cities in the world. Almost half the city is under sea level and a few of its parts are sinking at an alarming rate of 25 cms per year. Its swift expansion has brought about overpopulation and massive traffic congestion problems, exacerbating the problem of air pollution. Further, the city is also prone to natural calamities such as earthquakes. All of these factors have prompted the government to look out for alternatives.
In a televised address, the President said, “The burden Jakarta is holding right now is too heavy as the center of governance, business, finance, trade and services.”
However, he also mentioned that the move would not begin until 2024.
The proposed new site for the capital has not been named yet. The move will cost an estimated $33 billion, and around 20 per cent of this will be funded by the government. The other part of the project will be completed in collaboration with the private sector.