Both ENDS and partners worry about the Indonesian Omnibus Law
Both ENDS together with 13 other Dutch NGOs and trade unions have written to the Dutch Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation to express their deep concerns over the hasty approval of the so-called Omnibus Law on Job Creation by the Indonesian parliament.
Fundamentally, the law deregulates many sectors closely associated with human rights and environmental risks, such as the extractives and agri-business industries (eg mining, timber and palm oil), in favour of investors and at the cost of workers, local communities and the environment. "The Omnibus Law legalises all the dirty practices of investors, such as land-grabbing, destruction of the environment, and ignoring human rights, including the rights of indigenous peoples. The potential consequences should not be underestimated", says Djayu Sukma of the organisation Yayasan Masyarakat Kehutanan Lestari in West Kalimantan.
Human rights at stake
The law contains over 1,200 articles and amends over 70 other laws and regulations on issues from employment conditions and entitlements, to environmental protections, social safeguards, land-use planning, and authority over resource license allocation.
Indonesian CSOs, trade and labour unions, environmentalists and human rights organisations vigorously oppose the Omnibus law. "The Omnibus Law will undermine current human rights and environmental legislation more than another measures," says Andi Muttaqien of the Institute for Policy Research and Advocacy (ELSAM) in Jakarta. "The government wants to make Indonesia more attractive to investors and promises that this will create jobs," says Muttaqien. "But if we look at the details, the law is actually very bad for the Indonesian people."
Pushed through parliament
The Indonesian Government pushed the Omnibus Law through the law-making process on the basis that it is needed to attract foreign investment to Indonesia and to boost the Indonesian economy after the economic impacts of the COVID pandemic. However, local NGOs claimed the government was using the cover of the COVID lockdown to rush the law through parliament and avoid public scrutiny and accountability. The law was passed on Monday 5 October 2020, less than a year after it was introduced to parliament, with very limited public debate and consultation.
Public protests and mass demonstrations against the law have erupted in many Indonesian cities. Local organisations accuse the Jokowi administration of deliberately undermining human rights, contravening Indonesia's commitments to international norms like the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Climate Agreement, and jeopardising the integrity of Indonesia's democratic and law-making processes.
Consequences for Dutch trade relations
The deregulation of large parts of the Indonesian economy has significant consequences for the Netherlands and other global trading partners, especially those committed to responsible business conduct and sustainable development.
Both ENDS, other Dutch NGOs and the Netherlands' two largest labour unions are calling on the Dutch Government to raise these concerns with the Indonesian Government and to initiate an open dialogue with Indonesian government and civil society representatives about the potential consequences of the Omnibus Law for sustainable development in Indonesia and for relationships with the Netherlands and EU.
Read more about this subject
Blog / 16 June 2020
In September 2019, the streets of Jakarta were filled with angry demonstrators protesting against the Omnibus Employment Law. The law will ease the rules for mining, make it much more difficult to hold companies liable for criminal acts and severely restrict the power of the national anti-corruption committee. At the moment, such protests are completely impossible in Indonesia because of the COVID-19 crisis and the associated lockdown measures. And Indonesian people already had few other means of exerting influence on decision-making and legislative processes.
News / 22 November 2016
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News / 21 July 2020
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News / 8 May 2019
Organisations join forces against polarisation
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Press release / 18 September 2020
Boskalis doesn’t have to share documents on controversial project; fishing communities will not get crucial information
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Press release / 1 September 2020
Both ENDS brings legal action against Dutch dredging company on behalf of fisherfolk in South Sulawesi
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GAGGA rallies the collective power of the women's rights and environmental justice movements to realize a world where women can and do access their rights to water, food security, and a clean, healthy and safe environment.
Publication / 29 May 2019
A Negotiated Approach envisages the meaningful and long-term participation of communities in all aspects of managing the water and other natural resources on which their lives depend. It seeks to achieve healthy ecosystems and equitable sharing of benefits among all stakeholders within a river basin. This inclusive way of working is an essential precondition for the Transformative Practices that are promoted by Both ENDS and partners.
Press release / 25 May 2022
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Letter / 25 October 2022
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News / 8 November 2021
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News / 9 December 2019
At the end of November, the organisations WALHI South Sulawesi (part of Friends of the Earth) and Both ENDS filed a formal complaint with the Dutch export credit agency Atradius DSB. Despite the warnings from local communities for the negative consequences of a land reclamation project in the bay of Makassar, Atradius DSB advised the Dutch government to provide dredging company Boskalis with insurance for the execution of the project. The consequences for the fish stock, the beach and the lives of thousands of small-scale fishing communities are severe. Atradius DSB has not sufficiently investigated these harmful consequences beforehand.
Publication / 4 November 2009
News / 9 February 2022
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News / 15 November 2018
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News / 31 October 2019
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News / 22 April 2013
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News / 7 October 2018
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