STATE ADDRESS OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA ON THE OCCASION OF THE 70TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE PROCLAMATION OF INDEPENDENCE OF THE REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA

By Alfurkon Setiawan
Date 18 Agustus 2015
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STATE ADDRESS

OF

THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA

ON THE OCCASION OF THE 70TH ANNIVERSARY OF

THE PROCLAMATION OF INDEPENDENCE OF

THE REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA

BEFORE THE JOINT SESSION OF

THE REGIONAL REPRESENTATIVES COUNCIL OF

THE REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA

AND

THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF

THE REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA

Jakarta, 14 August 2015

MINISTRY OF THE STATE SECRETARIAT OF THE REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA

 


 

Bismillahirrahmanirrahim,

Assalamu’alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

May peace be upon us all,

Om Swastiastu,

Namo Buddhaya.

                                                                              

Honorable Speaker, Vice Speakers, and Members of the Regional Representatives Council of the Republic of Indonesia;

Honorable Speaker, Vice Speakers, and Members of the House of Representatives of the Republic of Indonesia;

Distinguished Chairperson, Vice Chairpersons, and Members of State Institutions;

Bapak B.J. Habibie, the Third President of the Republic of Indonesia;

Ibu Megawati Soekarnoputri, the Fifth President of the Republic of Indonesia;

Bapak Try Sutrisno and Bapak Hamzah Haz;

Excellencies Ambassadors of Friendly Countries and Heads of International Agencies and Organizations,

 

Fellow countrymen,

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let us together express our gratitude to God the Almighty, Allah SWT, for His blessings and compassion we are able to attend the Joint Session of the Regional Representatives Council of the Republic of Indonesia and the House of Representatives of the Republic of Indonesia in the Commemoration of the 70th Anniversary of the Proclamation of Independence of the Republic of Indonesia. 

Today, before this honorable joint session, I am going to deliver my first State Address as the President of the Republic of Indonesia.

 

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

We would like to express our gratitude to our predecessors, our national leaders, from President Soekarno, President Soeharto, President B.J. Habibie, President Abdurrahman Wahid, President Megawati Soekarnoputri, to President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

Imbued by the struggle and hard work of the national leaders, coupled with the full support of all the Indonesian people, today, when we commemorate the 70th anniversary of the independence of Indonesia, we feel that we have been equipped with  more than enough asset to leap forward.

The unity of Indonesia has been strong, the education of the people is becoming increasingly progressive, and the opportunity for students to have greater access to social mobility is wide open. At present, we have almost 300 thousand schools, more than two million teachers, and almost 40 million students, excluding kindergartens spread across the country.

 Above all, Indonesia that spans from Sabang to Merauke, from Miangas to Rote Island, is the world’s most predominantly Moslem country, the third biggest democratic country in the world. In terms of democracy, we have become one of most spectacular examples in the world. Compared to 2013, our democracy index has risen from 63.72 to 73.04 in 2015. We also have critical young voters who have strong motivation to safeguard the running of democracy and governance.

In addition, currently Indonesia also has a significant number of middle class people that will continue to increase along with demographic bonuses that we are enjoying and will continue to savour with obvious relish. In the past 15 years, Indonesia has also seen a rise in the Gross Domestic Product from around 1,000 trillion rupiah to around 10 thousands trillion rupiah and has emerged as the world’s 16th biggest economy. Indonesia is now also on a par with developed countries at the G-20 Forum.  

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

All of this indicates that Indonesia is a truly big nation. As a big nation, we have to have self-confidence and optimism that we can solve all problems confronting us.

So far, we have mistakenly believed that a major problem that has impacted negatively on our national economy has arisen from the slowdown of the global economic growth. However, if we study it closely, there is something that is eluding us:  it is the very values to respect others and ethics that are wearing thin, once again the very values to respect others and ethics that are wearing thin, a factor is also detrimental to the sustainability of the life of the nation.  

The depletion of the sense of mutual respect, the waning of the sense of considerateness, be it in the community or formal institutions such as legal enforcement, mass organizations, the media, and political parties, have dragged this country in the whirls of their own ego. This would certainly be a hindrance to the program of development actions, working culture, the spirit of mutual cooperation, and the growth of our nation’s character building.

 Moreover, there is now a tendency that everyone has complete  freedom to do anything they wish to do, to behave or to  voice interests. This  condition could  get worse when the media also is making use of the situation  only for the sake of rating, rather than educating the public to extol virtues and maintain productive working culture. The people are easily trapped in ‘public hysteria’ in responding to an issue, especially one with sensational dimension. 

Without political ethics, legal etiquette and administration, or economic discipline, we would lose optimism and be slow in addressing other challenges, including economic challenges faced by the Indonesian nation. We will be starved of the order of nation and state.

 

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

Today, both global and national economy is less favorable. It is not the first time we experienced such economic turbulences. We have withstood them so many times. We are optimistic that we will be able to surmount them.

In addition, many fundamental issues require solutions. In the food sector, we have not achieved food sovereignty; we are still vulnerable to harvest failure; and we are still prone to instable food prices. In the infrastructure sector, there remains a lack of mode of mass transportation in every region and many are less integrated.

In the maritime sector, illegal fishing and the plundering of marine resources have brought big financial loses to the state. In the energy sector, we are still facing the issue of electricity supply to support the lives of the people and economic development. In addition, there is still a deficit of around 600 thousand barrels per day.

In the meantime, in the health sector, malnutrition and maternal mortality rate remains high and still poses a huge problem. In the education sector, the average school period is still 8 years from 12-year compulsory education program. We are also still not free from poverty and social gap, be it among groups and between regions. Gini ratio of this year is still above 0.4. What is alarming is that the phenomenon of violence against children seems to be on the rise too.

Indonesia is also facing a number of tests, such as the eruption of Mount Sinabung, the eruption of Mount Raung, snowstorm in Papua, and the impacts of El-Nino as well as climate change. A couple of months ago, a Hercules airplane of the Indonesian Air Force crashed in Medan, claiming the lives of our best soldiers and civilians.

Of course, the Government cannot stand idle. With the capacity that we have, we immediately responded, sending aids and relief assistance to the affected residents. We also pay tribute and credit to the fallen soldiers whose lives were lost in the Hercules crash.

 

My Fellow Countrymen, 

History has taught us that the key to addressing those problems is unity. Once again, unity!

In the early years of independence, the Indonesian people continued to face major problems, namely fighting against colonialists who wished to re-colonize our country.

In such difficult times, relation among leaders, between leaders and the people, and among the people, was genuinely intertwined. The spirit of their unity was like cement that bonds grains of sand into a strong pillar. Thanks to the unity, we remain an independent and dignified nation.

Therefore, to address all the nation’s problems these days, we have to stay united, work hand in hand, and must not be disintegrated by political bickering and short term interests so that our political sovereignty, economic independence and personality in the culture can be manifested.

As you may be aware, I just reshuffled the Working Cabinet. I made this decision to strengthen the Government performance to accelerate the implementation of development action program. The nation’s best people must buckle down and work hard to build this nation and country. I consider this reshuffle one of the best bridges to fulfill my pledge to the people, a goal to improve their welfare in their lives.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

We have achieved democratic consolidation. Now, for the sake of national interests, we conduct fundamental transformation of the national economy. The paradigm of consumptive development must be shifted into productive one.  Development must begin from the regions and rural areas, from villages by increasing productivity of human resources, capitalizing on science and technology, and a drive by creative, innovative and persistent mental attitude. By so doing, we will be able to make the most of our national resources to bring the biggest welfare to the people.

Without courage to make that leap, we will never be able to lay the foundation of a strong national development, which is economically independent, nor will we be able to prioritize national interests.

So far, the Government has continued to maintain State Budget in healthy, qualified, and sustainable condition. The fiscal policy is directed to boost fiscal autonomy by way of augmenting revenues without compromising investment climate.  We will reduce dependence on income from natural resources. We keep budget deficit in check within the range of safe limit and we, too, maintain debt ratio in a prudent manner. In addition, we also restructure the subsidy system to enable it to get to the right target. We also encourage the construction of infrastructures and the advancement of food security and social security.

 

My Fellow Countrymen,

I understand, the policies that I embraced in the commencement of administration were unpopular, making it sound as if the Government were not siding with the people.

Nevertheless, my political morale said that I had to act and put an end to incorrect practices.

My first step is converting fuel subsidy to productive sectors and the Social Safety Net. I also reorganize the procurement and distribution of the fuel. We should leave consumptive behavior behind and begin to adopt the productive one.

As an illustration, in 2014, some 240 trillion rupiah’s worth of subsidy was going down the drain, burnt away on the streets, only enjoyed by millions of private cars; instead of by the people who live in the mountains, in coastal areas, on remote islands, or those living below the poverty line.

That is what I call improper practice. In fact, that astronomical amount of money could have been used to build schools, hospitals, improve people’s prosperity through productive economic programs and social protection, as well as build more infrastructures.

 

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

 

The Government realizes that the policy of converting fuel subsidy will temporarily cause us a considerable discomfort. However, in the long run, this policy, which is like a bitter pill to swallow, will in turn pay off. 

 Many infrastructures and public facilities could be built by the Government for the benefit of the people. Many social assistance programs for the underprivileged could be freed up to help them escape from the shackles of poverty. Many social protection programs could be run sustainably for the entire community and workers. And many other Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (UMKM) could be launched.  All of this can be done through by converting fuel and other subsidies which are not right on target.         

To the less-fortunate, those prone to changes, the Government is freeing up Healthy Indonesia Card, Smart Indonesia Card, Welfare Family Card, and Social Assistance Card for Severely Disabled People. The Government will also continue to support the effectiveness and sustainability of the National Social Security System program, both National Health Insurance and Social Security for Manpower.

Those programs are social safety nets that have been specially designed to help our disadvantages brothers and sisters remain resilient and stand tall when there is economic turbulence. They need to be part of productive national development.

 

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

 

In line with the spirit of Nawacita (Nine Priorities), the Government continues to accelerate development of infrastructure. We are now building toll roads that will soon interlink cities and towns on the Island of Java, even in the next few years, interconnect those on the Island of Sumatra. We will construct railroad tracks in Sulawesi and immediately in Kalimantan and Papua; we will build more reservoirs, shipyards and ports to support the sea toll.

As for the energy sector, in the last 10 months, the Government has begun to build more power plants across the country. We hope in 5years’ time we are able to provide sufficient supply of electricity to prop up industrial advancement and to reach a high electricity ratio to ensure economic growth for the leap of national progress. 

We are also building more traditional markets as a buffer for economic growth and boost in the welfare of the people as well as provision of fiscal incentives for productive economic activities. In line with this, the Government also accelerates the construction of Special Economic Zone and the Industrial Zone outside Java, especially for agricultural and mining industries.

The Government is making every effort to ensure that the various development action programs can be managed by prioritizing the capacity and innovation of our own people. The development action programs, especially for creative economy, should give access to obtain more qualified employment opportunities, the improvement of welfare and the mastery of science and technology for the nation.

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

I would like to prove that you must never turn your back on the ocean or the sea. Our vast seas have economic, defense, and unity potentials.  Our marine environment now being threatened by the climate change needs to be salvaged. We also have to protect our seas from the security threats, such as illegal fishing and plundering of marine resources. Any vessels that are caught stealing our fish must deal with our stern actions, including by being sunk. International laws are also against illegal fishing and plundering of marine resources.

One of my most important agendas is to realize the sea toll road. The sea toll road which is part of the maritime infrastructure will be equipped with productive shipyards. Insya Allah, this policy will encourage sustainable growth of the maritime economy, sea preservation, and good marine’s spatial management.

Along with that, we also have to further explore maritime culture and maritime identity of the Indonesian nation. We have to be able to demonstrate to the world that Indonesia is a maritime nation. A nation that sincerely preserves and empowers her seas.

That is the early part of our efforts of becoming World’s Maritime Fulcrum. A Maritime Fulcrum which is not only initiated to create national defense, but also regional and global defense. This strategy is being hammered out and will be incorporated into the Indonesian National Marine Policy.

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

In order to encourage the strengthening of national economy through fundamental transformation, the Government makes it mandatory to use rupiah as the only means of transaction at home country. This measure is also intended to show that we are a sovereign State. Economic transformation also requires a strong support from other areas, such as foreign policy, defense and security, law enforcement, and respect for human rights. Without synergy from those fields, the order of the nation and state life would be frail.

As outlined in the 1945 Constitution, the basic principles of our foreign policy are free and active. This principle obliges Indonesia to set our foreign policy freely, independently and without any alliance burden. Indonesia has actively participated in maintaining the world order based on independence, lasting peace and social justice.

To that end, Indonesia will continue sending peacekeeping mission to many parts of the world, becoming mediator of conflict, providing leadership in formulating regional and global norms.

Indonesia will continue to contribute and play a role in creating security in South East Asia, as well as assume leadership in the Indian Ocean, where Indonesia will chair the Indian Ocean Rim Association in 2015-2017. Indonesia also continues to support the independence of Palestine from colonization and injustice and to call for Muslim brothers and sisters in the Middle East to lay down their weapons and to commit to peace for the sake of ukhuwah Islamiyah (Islamic brotherhood).

We will also build a strong national defense by empowering the primary weaponry defense system (alutsista) of domestic products. We must have national defense forces that are not merely serving as a minimum essential force, but ones also capable of securing and maintaining the sovereignty of the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia as well as protecting her approximately 250 million people. The strength of the defense that we build should constantly uphold the character of the country and nation of Indonesia as a peace-loving nation.

In line with that, in the context of law enforcement and corruption eradication, the Government promotes synergies between the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK)-Indonesian National Police (POLRI)-Attorney General to work hand in hand and become a catalyst of development. Synchronization and harmonization between law enforcement agencies continue to be improved to pave the way for the establishment of a modern legal system centering on preventive and facilitative aspects.

The Government has also formed a Selection Committee of KPK Management to be made up of public figures with credibility, independence, and integrity. We hope to have the reliable KPK leaders capable of making the anti-corruption institution work effectively, of cooperating with other law enforcers, cleansing the Republic from corruption.

 

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

 

I would like to pay attention especially to the Land of Papua. The Government commits to develop Papua and to make Papua the Land of Peace. Riots such as in Tolikara case must never happen again in the future. The Government has given foreign journalists access to enter and cover news in Papua.

The Government also commits to helping the tribal community across the country plagued by land conflict, reducing carbon emission by putting an end to forest fires, managing the forests in a sustainable way, protecting fishermen from the illegal fishing by foreign fishermen, protecting the future generation from the threat of drugs, as well as establishing the Reconciliation Commission for gross human rights violations.

Today the Government is seeking the wisest and noblest solutions to resolve human rights violation cases in our country. We want a national reconciliation so that the future generation would not have to shoulder the historical burden of the past. The children of the nation should feel free to look to the future.  All of this is only initial steps of the Government to uphold humanity in our homeland.

 

Fellow Countrymen,

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

 

At the end of this noble state address, I would like to thank all Indonesian people for their integrity, patience and optimism that have given the Government a room to conduct fundamental transformation of the national economy.

We would also like to thank some representatives of our brothers and sisters from the remote areas, the outermost islands, the inland areas, the winners of science and technology olympics, sports competition, and others, for their incredible achievements and dedication. These great people are also here with us in this noble room.

We need more development fighters like you, who uphold the values of Integrity, Work Ethics, and the spirit of Gotong Royong (mutual cooperation). Therefore, today, I reiterate the need of the National Movement of Mental Revolution. This movement will nurture the values of fighting spirit, optimism, hardwork, and manners and strengthen the character of the nation and the order of the nation and state on the basis of Pancasila (the Five Principles) and the 1945 Constitution.

With the sincere support, patience, and optimism of the people of Indonesia, Insya Allah, the fundamental transformation of the national economy that is being carried out by the Government will have a fruitful result when the time is ripe.

To conclude this state address, I want to recall the message of Bung Karno at the Commemoration of the First Windu ( an eight-year period) Anniversary of the Proclamation of Independence of the Republic of Indonesia on 17 August 1953: “…we do not aim to build a nation lasting just for one windu, we aim to have a nation lasting for a thousand windus, an eternal nation.” 

There is no sustainable prosperity without hardwork, no progress without sacrifice. LET’S WORK for the nation! LET’S WORK for the country! LET’S WORK for the people!

Long Live the Republic of Indonesia!

Thank you.

Wassalamu’alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

Om Shanti Shanti Shanti Om,

Namo Buddhaya

Jakarta, 14 August 2015

 

THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA

Sgd.

JOKO WIDODO

 

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