Jakarta aims to become global city after capital relocation

Jakarta will need to have more than 10 of the world's 500 largest companies and more than 100 unicorn start-ups, an official said.

Nina A. Loasana

Nina A. Loasana

The Jakarta Post


A portion of the Jakarta city center is pictured in this undated photo. PHOTO: SHUTTERSTOCK/THE JAKARTA POST

October 17, 2023

JAKARTA – Jakarta may have a long road to becoming the global city it aims to be after it loses its state capital status, but the 2024 general election could bring the city new opportunities, a recent discussion has concluded.

“Jakarta’s next vision is to be the national economic center and global city,” said Jakarta Development Planning Board head Atika Nur Rahmania, citing the city’s aspirations mentioned in a bill on Jakarta’s special region status.

Atika was a speaker at a discussion organized by the Jakarta Development Planning Board alongside the Rembuk Bina Karta Foundation on Thursday.

The participants sought to examine Jakarta’s identity as it prepares to lose its national capital designation to Nusantara in East Kalimantan.

With the passing of the Nusantara Capital City (IKN) Law, which mandates a change in the status of Jakarta, the current capital urgently needs new regulations if it hopes to avoid falling to the same status as other regions in Indonesia.

In response, the Jakarta administration and the Home Ministry have formulated the Jakarta special designation bill to keep the province at the center of national economic activity. The bill is currently on the House of Representatives’ priority legislation list.

Of the various definitions of a global city, Atika concluded that a “global city is a city that plays an important role in transnational economic integration and is able to attract goods, capital and human resources, ideas and information globally”.

Gap persists

For Jakarta to meet that definition, Atika said at least three indicators were to be used: business activity, human capital and information exchange.

In terms of business activity, a global city should have more than 10 of the world’s 500 largest companies and have more than 100 unicorn start-ups, she said. Indonesia has about 5 or 6 unicorns.

Having a large number of top world universities would also help improve the human capital indicator of a city.

“If a city has several medical schools, it will raise its rating quickly because it is indirectly related to the quality of health in the city,” she added.

While the exact number of medical schools in Jakarta is unknown, according to Edurank data, there are 8 medical schools in the city considered the best.

A global city should also have adequate infrastructure that allows easy access to information exchange, Atika said, but she added that Indonesia did not yet treat the internet as a public good.

“It is crucial to have 5G network development throughout the city without any uncovered areas,” she said.

New opportunities

Although many problems in Jakarta are transboundary and require coordination across regions, Oswar Mungkasa, master planner at the National Development Planning Agency, said he believed the simultaneous presidential and legislative elections next year would enable the master plan in the proposed bill to be implemented in the Greater Jakarta area.

The scheme, he said, would help local authorities in Jakarta and its satellite cities, such as Bogor, Depok, Tangerang and Bekasi, to be more effective in making Jakarta a global city.

Atika, meanwhile, said the challenge was “how we can formulate a new entity” that could coordinate efforts to develop the adjacent regions “with authorities capable of executing so that it will not be the same as the already defunct BKSP [Greater Jakarta Coordination Board]”.

On Saturday, The Jakarta Post spoke with Nirwono Joga, an urban planning expert from Trisakti University.

He said creating a new entity was not necessary and that the solution was simply to make Bogor, Depok, Tangerang and Bekasi “officially part” of the jurisdiction of the Jakarta administration. (alf)

scroll to top