"I think we should look at the most important reason behind President Joko Widodo's decision on the transfer of the capital city. The most important aspect is equalizing growth and development in all parts of Indonesia. Greater Jakarta (Jabodetabek) also has a high population density," South Korean Ambassador to Indonesia Kim Chang- beom remarked during a special interview with Antara in Jakarta, Thursday (Aug 29).
Ambassador Kim noted that a similar policy was also applied by the South Korean government that had built an administrative center called Sejong City to reduce congestion in the capital city.
Sejong was established in 2007 as the new capital of South Korea in the South Chungcheong region and North Chungcheong Province to attract investment into the country's central region.
Since 2012, the South Korean government has relocated several ministries and institutions to Sejong, but several of those are yet in other cities, especially Seoul, where the National Assembly, President's Office, and several important government bodies remain.
Moreover, the South Korean government also relocated several state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and public facilities to small- and medium-scale cities to boost the capacity of these cities.
Sharing the similar view, the government of South Korea supported the relocation of the capital city to East Kalimantan.
"We are closely watching developments in the relocation of the capital city. The announcement of the capital city's relocation was also well-received by the people of Indonesia," Ambassador Kim noted.
If the plan is truly realized, Kalimantan will become a more developed region and prosperous community. In addition, through the application of a good design, Kalimantan will become a smart and green city.
Ambassador Kim noted that the South Korean government was willing to move its embassy to East Kalimantan. The distance from Seoul to East Kalimantan is closer than Jakarta.
"Jakarta is a bit far, around six to seven hours flight, but Kalimantan may be an around 5.5-hour-long flight from Seoul. Hence, we will get closer," Ambassador Kim noted.
"We look forward to working with the Indonesian government on this ambitious and historic project," he added.
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