Ways to increase competitiveness and drive green economic growth in Indonesia’s Special Economic Zones (SEZs) as well as international best practices and key challenges in Indonesia and around the world were discussed by policy makers, industry players, and experts at the Green Special Economic Zones Conference, held at Hotel Aryaduta, Jakarta in December 2017.
The conference was hosted by the National Council for Special Economic Zones (DN KEK) under the Coordinating Ministry of Economic Affairs (CMEA) in collaboration with the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), highlighting the importance of placing green growth at the forefront of SEZs development to enhance Indonesia’s competitiveness, drive more investment, increase economic growth and achieve the country’s sustainability commitments to the Sustainable Development Goals and the Nationally Determined Contribution.
“We are providing many incentives for investors to invest in our SEZs, such as tax holidays and non-fiscal incentives,” said Dr. Enoh Suharto, Head of the National Council for Special Economic Zones (DN KEK). “By incorporating green growth in the development and policy of these zones, we are increasing the competitiveness and desirability of Indonesia’s SEZs to foreign investors, which in turn will strengthen the region, increase the quality of life of the people and further improve productivity.”
The current Indonesian administration has established 12 SEZs, four of which are operating, representing economic activities across various industrial sectors, ranging from natural resource-based processing industries, such as fisheries, palm oil and oleochemicals, to eco-tourism. Incorporating the concept of green growth within these SEZs reinforces Indonesia’s strong position and great potential to accelerate sustainable economic development and ensure social equity.
GGGI’s collaboration with DN KEK to develop an integrated framework of policy guidelines and instruments is a step forward to achieving sustainable economic growth within Indonesia’s SEZ. Our assessment studies in SEZ Mandalika and SEZ Sei Mangkei, which was conducted to evaluate investment potential, show that meeting the principles of a green economy is vital to drive innovative mechanisms and trigger green growth-oriented reforms across the wider economy.
The conference provided a platform to discuss best practices and key lessons learned from international policy makers and expert practitioners including from Indonesia, Korea, China, Japan, Thailand, the Philippines, UAE, Morocco, South Africa, Mauritius and Costa Rica. The conference concluded that a committed focus on the quality of economic growth is fundamental to drive investment and to fully realize a country’s economic potential.