From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Nusantara
Mains level : NA
Indonesia passed a bill replacing its capital Jakarta with East Kalimantan, situated to the east of Borneo island. The new capital city of the country will be called Nusantara.
- The New State Capital Law Bill has been drafted by a special committee set up by Widodo’s government and makes Nusantara, also called IKN, the capital of the Republic of Indonesia.
- The transfer of the status of Jakarta as Indonesia’s capital to Nusantara, where 256,142 hectares of land has been set aside for the project, will take place in the “first semester” of 2024.
- East Kalimantan, where the new capital will be, as per the bill is said to have a world-city vision.
- It will be designed and managed with the objective of becoming a sustainable city in the world.
Why is Indonesia changing its capital city?
- The new location is very strategic – it’s in the centre of Indonesia and close to urban areas.
- The burden Jakarta is holding right now is too heavy as the centre of governance, business, finance, trade and services.
- Jakarta is also infamous for being the worlds’ first sinking capital city due to rising sea levels.
- The city’s pollution levels are so bad that it has been ranking as one of the most polluted cities in the world for years.
- Another important reason to shift the capital from Java island to Borneo island has been the growing inequality – financial and otherwise.
Where is East Kalimantan?
- East Kalimantan is 2,300 kilometres from Jakarta on the eastern side of Borneo island, shared by Indonesia, Malaysia and Brunei.
- The new capital will be located in the North Penajam Paser and Kutai Kartanegara regions.
- East Kalimantan is an area with immense water resources and habitable terrain.
- East Kalimantan is rich in flora and fauna.
- Nusantara is an old Javanese term that means ‘archipelago’.
- Nusantara has historical, sociological, and philosophical aspects attached to the name.
- The name would represent Indonesia as a whole and would show the potential of the nation.
What are the other countries that have changed capitals?
- Indonesia is not the first country to change its capital city.
- There has been a long list of countries that have changed their capitals for various reasons. Brazil changed its capital city from Rio De Janerio to Brasilia, a more centrally-located city, in 1960.
- In 1991, Nigeria hanged the country’s capital from Lagos to Abuja.
- Kazakhstan moved its capital city from Almaty, which is still its commercial centre, to Nur-Sultan in 1997.
- Myanmar changed its capital from Rangoon to Naypyidaw in 2005.