Indonesia Minister Announces Nusantara as Name of New National Capital in Eastern Kalimantan

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JAKARTA: Nusantara will be the name of Indonesia’s projected future capital in eastern Kalimantan, according to National Development Planning Minister Suharso Monoarfa (Jan 17).

According to Mr Monoarfa, the president gave the name Nusantara, which means archipelago in Indonesian.

“On Friday, I received confirmation and direct directives from the president.

“The reason is that Nusantara has been well-known for a long time,” he continued. It’s also iconic on a global scale, simple, and accurately reflects our archipelago, the Republic of Indonesia. He said, “I believe we all agree on the name Nusantara.”

Some attendees at the meeting expressed concern that the name Nusantara, which is a phrase used to describe the country, could be confusing. Some have recommended that the new capital be referred to as Special Administration Nusantara to avoid confusion.

“This is not an easy task. As a result, we won’t be able to play about with the names “Mr. Agustin Teras Narang, a Regional Representative Council representative, said (DPD).

The minister disclosed that they consulted linguists and historians and offered roughly 80 names to the president, including Negara Jaya (blessed country), Nusantara Jaya (blessed archipelago), and Nusa Karya (blessed island) (homeland creation).

It’s also unclear if the new capital would be a province or a city, however the group agreed that it should be on par with the provincial level.

President Joko Widodo declared in 2019 that the country’s capital would be relocated from Jakarta to the East Kalimantan province’s remote regencies of Penajam Paser Utara and Kutai Kartanegara.

Because most of the country’s economic activity has been concentrated in Java, where the current capital is, the move is thought important to save sinking and congested Jakarta and develop Kalimantan as well as the eastern half of Indonesia.

The 466 trillion rupiah (US$32 billion) major capital project was planned to begin building in 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic, however, led officials to halt the research.

Last year, discussions on the new capital resumed, and renowned Balinese sculptor Nyoman Nuarta was named as the state palace’s designer.

Mr Nuarta announced earlier this month on his Instagram account that Mr Widodo had approved the final design, which was inspired by the country’s mythological bird Garuda.

Sri Mulyani, the Finance Minister, and Basuki Hadimuljono, the Minister of Public Works and Public Housing, both visited the new capital site this month to check the building preparations.

The new capital’s draft statute is anticipated to be passed by parliament this month, allowing building to begin soon and relocation to begin in 2024.

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