Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The government will give a Rp200 million bonus to every Indonesian athlete who wins a gold medal in the upcoming 26th Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) in Palembang, South Sumatra, and Jakarta on November 11-22.

Silver and bronze medalists meanwhile will each receive Rp50 million and Rp30 million respectively, Sports Minister Andi Mallarangeng said here on Friday.

"The bonus is to be given (to the athletes) individually and not on a shared basis," he said.

So, a badminton player in a singles event will get Rp200 million if he or she wins a gold medal and so will each of the players in the doubles event, he said.

The minister hoped with the equal bonus for all gold medalists, Indonesian athletes would be motivated to contribute to Indonesia`s gold medal collection effort at the event.

He said Indonesia was targeting the Sea Games overall champion title and 25 percent or more of the gold medals offered in all sport branches.

The biennial event will be officially opened at Jakabaring, Palembang, South Sumatra, attended by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

Vice President Boediono on Friday meanwhile saw off the country`s athletes who would compete in the Games.

In his speech he expressed hope that the athletes could show their best performance and thus contribute to the country`s glory.

He pointed out Indonesia was the overall champion of the 10th SEA Games in 1979, the 15th SEA Games in 1987 and the 19th SEA Games in 1997.

A total of 44 sport branches would be competed in the event with 542 gold medals for grabs. Indonesia is sending 1,058 athletes to compete in the event along with athletes from ASEAN`s 10 member countries and Timor Leste.

Editor: Priyambodo RH
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