Batam (ANTARA) - The Management Agency for the Batam Free Trade Zone and Free Port formed a special team to serve investors and boost investment in the local area.

"A team will be formed," Head of Supervisory Agency of Batam Region, Muhammad Rudi, confirmed in Batam on Monday.

The team will be chaired by echelon 3 officials with staff working in shifts.

Later, a special room at the public service mall will also receive investors.

"The team leader is at least echelon 3 and will deal directly with me. I will come directly to serve," said Rudi, who is also the Mayor of Batam.

He will deal directly with investors, from the beginning to the end.

"Including in the matter of land," he said.

The policy was carried out in accordance with the instructions of President Joko Widodo and the Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs.

He said, within 100 working days as the Head of BP Batam Area, he was still concentrating on the preparation of the organizational structure of work procedures (SOTK) within the BP Batam Area.
As the SOTK and officials have not yet finished, he cannot urge the staff to work optimally.

"We have a meeting to recruit officials who will occupy positions. If the SOTK is completed, we will discuss new officials," he said.

In 2019, the authority approved the construction of two special trade zones, including a maintenance and repair facility for aircraft at the Hang Nadim International Airport and a digital hub in Nongsa.

"At the Nongsa digital park, we will collaborate with the US smartphone manufacturer, Apple," the deputy remarked.

Once a thriving free port and bonded industrial zone, Batam Island had attracted investments reaching billions of dollars regulated by an independent Batam Development Authority. Under the authority's rule, investors enjoy tariff cuts, as well as a facility to acquire lands and licenses for business.

However, since the regional election was launched in 2001, Batam was ruled by a local government that stripped parts of the authority's power over the island. The dualistic administrative authorities in the island have led to years of confusion and uncertainty among investors.

Since President Joko Widodo took office for a second term in 2019, his administration had planned to merge the two authorities and change the status of the island, from a free trade zone to a special economic zone.

Related news: Government launching two special economic zones in Batam in 2020
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Translator: Yuniati Jannatun, Azis Kurmala
Editor: Sri Haryati
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