Jambi (ANTARA) - The Jambi municipal authority is preparing to restore the Solok Sipin Temple site by declaring it a cultural heritage and make it the city's newest tourism destination, Deputy Mayor Maulana has informed.

"We are preparing Solok Sipin Temple site to be a cultural heritage site, and the process needs academic discussion," he said here on Thursday.

The municipal authority is ready to set aside a budget for the temple restoration if academics agree that the site be designated as a cultural heritage, he added.

"We first need to designate (the site) as a cultural heritage to ensure the financial aspects for the restoration works," the deputy mayor said.

The municipal authority will organize seminars involving academics and archaeologists to determine the site's status as a cultural heritage, he informed.

According to academic research, the Solok Sipin Temple site served as a center of government during the ancient Hindu-Buddha period in Indonesia, Maulana highlighted.

There are at least four clusters of brick structures at the 10-square kilometer site located on the banks of River Batanghari in Sipin village, he said.

"At present, we have only acquired 100 square meters (of the site). It means that there are a lot of potentials to unearth new structures to reveal how the ancient government worked," he added.

He said that while the restoration budget would also be disbursed by the central government and the provincial authority, the site would be maintained by the municipal authority in the future.

The new cultural heritage site is expected to bring economic benefits to Jambi, particularly in the tourism sector, the deputy mayor added.

"(The site) will encourage the development of hotels, transportation, and MSMEs (micro, small, and medium enterprises). This is consistent with our characteristics because Jambi city lacks natural resources, and we need to drive the economy from this kind of sector," Maulana said.

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Translator: Tuyani, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Sri Haryati
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