"It will cover a total area of 180 thousand hectares. Some 40 thousand hectares will become the main area, and in future, it will be expanded to 180 thousand hectares. Half of it would be green spaces, including preserved forest. In parts of Penajam Paser Utara and Kutai Kertanegara, we have the Bukit Soeharto preserved forest," National Development Planning Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro had remarked at the State Palace in Jakarta on Monday.
During a press conference in the company of Vice President Jusuf Kalla, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) had named Penajam Paser Utara and Kutai Kertanegara in East Kalimantan Province as the sites of the new capital city.
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He elaborated that East Kalimantan had met the requirements to be the new capital city that entail minimum risk of natural disaster and located at the heart of Indonesia. The site is also close to big cities, such as Balikpapan and Samarinda, and it has government-owned land spanning 180 thousand hectares.
Bambang remarked that relocation of the capital city is aimed at reducing economic inequality between Java Island and other islands outside Java.
"The president has said that this is a grand strategy to reduce inequality between Java and other islands," he noted, adding that development of the new capital city will have a positive impact by facilitating development of its adjoining areas.
The government has also planned to develop 10 metropolitans in Indonesia, of which four would be located in Java Island: Bandung in West Java, Semarang in Central Java, Surabaya in East Java and Jakarta; while six others will be in Medan in North Sumatra, Palembang in South Sumatra, Banjarmasin in South Kalimantan, Makassar in South Sulawesi, Denpasar in Bali, and Manado in North Sulawesi. Related news: Awaiting people's participation in new capital city-related decision
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