THE government projects that two new Special Economic Zones (SEZs), namely Lido, West Java, and Java Integrated Industrial and Port Estate (JIIPE), Gresik, East Java, will attract investment worth US$19.3 billion, so it is expected to support the business ecosystem around the area.

According to the Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, Airlangga Hartarto as well as the Chairman of the SEZ National Council in Jakarta, Thursday (11/2) said the SEZ Lido is expected to really be able to encourage tourism in Indonesia. The result must be clear, tourists to West Java must also be of international quality.

Minister Airlangga explained that the SEZ Lido is projected to attract investment of up to US$2.4 billion and absorb a workforce of 29,545 people in its 20th year. Then, the JIIPE SEZ is projected to be able to bring in an investment of US$16.9 billion with a workforce absorption of 199,818 people when fully operational.

He added that SEZ Lido is a tourism SEZ with a business plan to develop attractions including world-class theme parks, golf courses, and retail and dining. Then, the development of six-star luxury resort accommodation, other star hotels, and the development of the creative economy, namely film studios and music festivals.

“The presence of a theme park that will be built in the Lido SEZ is predicted to be able to increase the number of domestic and foreign tourist visits to reach 63.4 million people by 2038 or an average of 3.17 million tourists per year,” Airlangga noted.

According to him, foreign exchange flows from foreign tourists and foreign exchange savings out of domestic tourists could reach US$4.1 billion over 20 years. This has to be a premium one too, and the foreign exchange is also a premium. Meanwhile, SEZ JIIPE plans to develop business in the metal, electronics, chemical, energy and logistics industries.

The production results of business actors in it, he continued, are projected to be able to contribute to exports of US$10.1 billion per year when fully operational, as well as import substitution for metal and chemical industrial products.

The East Java Provincial Government, he said, stated the readiness of Gresik’s accessibility, namely the Krian Legundi Bunder Manyar Toll Road, which has been operating and is expected to improve the feasibility of the existing industries in the SEZ.

The two SEZ proposals that have been approved will then become recommendations to President Joko Widodo. Previously, there were already 15 SEZs consisting of nine industrial SEZs and 6 tourism SEZs, namely in Arun, Lhokseumawe, Aceh; Sei Mangkei, North Sumatra; and Tanjung Api-Api, South Sumatra.

Then, SEZ Galang Batang, Riau Islands; Tanjung Kelayang, Bangka Belitung Islands; Tanjung Lesung, Banten; Mandalika, NTB; Maloy Batuta Trans East Kalimantan; and Palu, Central Sulawesi. In addition, SEZ Bitung, North Sulawesi; Morotai, North Maluku; Sorong, West Papua; Singhasari, East Java; Likupang, North Sulawesi; and Kendal, Central Java.

The development of the SEZ has resulted in an investment commitment of IDR70.4 trillion and has been realized in the amount of IDR23.1 trillion by the end of 2020. The biggest investment realization came from Galang Batang which was officially operational at the end of 2018, then Sei Mangkei, and also Kendal which was just set to become KEK at the end of 2019.

‘In addition, from the development of SEZ, employment opportunities have been created for 19,951 people by the end of 2020,” Airlangga concluded. [antaranews/photo special]