News / 22 November 2016

Is coastal defense project in Jakarta promoting Dutch business interests or protecting the city?

A Dutch economic trade mission is visiting Indonesia from the 21st to the 24th of November.  Prime Minister Mark Rutte, who heads the mission, is accompanied by Minister Ploumen (Foreign Trade and Development), Minister Schultz van Haegen and State Secretary Dijksma (Infrastructure and Environment).


Photo: dredging activities (in the background) near Jakarta's coast 


One of the main agenda points of the trade mission is the 'National Capital Integrated Coastal Development’ (NCICD) project. Dutch engineering firms, with support from the Royal Dutch Embassy in Jakarta, are strongly involved in this multi-billion flood protection-land development plan for Jakarta Bay. The NCICD is meant to protect Jakarta against flooding from the sea and from the rivers that flow into the city. The NCICD comprises the construction of a dam and a new city district (Great Garuda). The total investment required may amount to $40 billion. In addition to the NCICD, 17 islands will also be developed in Jakarta Bay.


Dutch organisations Both ENDS, SOMO and TNI are in close contact with Indonesian organisations that represent people whose livelihoods are directly affected by the project - in particular fishermen, women, and urban poor who are not connected with piped water services. These organisations are very concerned about the limited participation of local interest groups in the planning process leading up to the design and implementation of NCICD. This is especially problematic given the expected immediate negative impacts on the livelihoods and welfare of residents of Jakarta Bay. The local organisations furthermore doubt that the NCICD will address the most probable cause of the flooding of Jakarta: the sinking of the city.


Both ENDS, SOMO and TNI are currently conducting a study on NCICD based on the stated concerns of local partners. The ambition is to identify opportunities that ensure the involvement and participation of local groups in solving the water problems in Jakarta in a truly sustainable way.


For more information: 

2-pager on what Both ENDS, SOMO and TNI want to achieve, together with their partners in Indonesia. 

Read more about this subject