June 16, 2023
JAKARTA – This year’s month-long Jakarta Fair opened on Wednesday as part of the capital’s 496th anniversary celebrations.
While the event made its long-awaited return last year after the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s Jakarta Fair will be held without strict health protocols in place as the country approaches the virus as an endemic disease.
At the opening ceremony on Wednesday, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo highlighted the event’s long history.
“This year, Southeast Asia’s biggest and longest-running exhibition is back for its 54th edition. This event has been going on for half a century,” Jokowi said in a speech.
Likewise, interim Jakarta governor Heru Budi Hartono paid tribute to one of his predecessors, the late Ali Sadikin, who came up with the idea for the annual event in 1968 during his tenure as governor of the city. The annual exhibition was initially held in Merdeka Square, Central Jakarta, near the National Monument (Monas), but was moved in 1992 to its present home in the Jakarta International Expo (JIExpo) center in Kemayoran, North Jakarta.
Some 1,500 booths representing 2,500 tenants will be present at the celebrations, with electric vehicles (EVs) taking center stage this time around.
“We’ve provided plenty of space for small and medium enterprises [SOEs], culinary booths and an EV exhibition in support of the government’s initiative,” JIExpo general manager Oki Setiawan said in a press conference last week.
Aside from product exhibitions, a series of concerts will again be held at this year’s Jakarta Fair. In contrast to last year, however, tickets to the concerts come at an additional cost, on top of the daily pass.
“Let’s put it this way, if a hardcore fan wants to see [their favorite musician], we don’t want them to stand in the back. As paying customers, they can be in front,” JIExpo marketing director Ralph Scheunemann said.
New to this year’s Jakarta Fair is a haunted house made in collaboration with horror-themed content creator Jurnal Risa. As with the concerts, tickets for the haunted house are not included in the daily pass.
Basic admission tickets cost Rp 30,000 (US$2.01) on weekdays and Rp 50,000 on the weekends. Regular bundled concert tickets, meanwhile, are priced at Rp 100,000, with VIP bundled concert tickets priced at Rp 175,000.
To accommodate visitors, city-owned bus operator TransJakarta has opened three temporary bus routes to the JIExpo complex from the PGC shopping center, Pulo Gadung and Matraman Baru, all in East Jakarta. The three new routes will complement the regular JIExpo bus that departs from City Hall in Central Jakarta.
The Jakarta Fair is open daily, from 3:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays and from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. on weekends, and will end on July 16.