Indonesia’s capital will move from Jakarta to a site in less populated East Kalimantan province on Borneo island, announced Joko Widodo, President of the Nation.
“Intense studies over the past three years had resulted in the choice of the location on the eastern side of Borneo island,” said President Joko Widodo.
Jakarta is an archetypical Asian mega-city with 10 million people, or 30 million including those in its greater metropolitan area. It is prone to earthquakes and flooding and is rapidly sinking due to uncontrolled extraction of ground water, reported AP.
“The new capital city, which has not yet been named, will be in the middle of the vast archipelago nation and already has relatively complete infrastructure because it is near the cities of Balikpapan and Samarinda,” Mr. Widodo said.
“We couldn’t continue to allow the burden on Jakarta and Java island to increase in terms of population density. Economic disparities between Java and elsewhere would also increase.” he was speaking in a press conference.
Decades of discussions about building a new capital on Borneo island moved forward in April when Mr. Widodo approved a general relocation plan. He appealed for support for the move in an annual national address on the eve of Indonesia’s independence day on August 16, AP reported.