The border area has been synonymous with backwardness. Located in remote areas, the border area is like a back door: isolated, slum, and left behind. In fact, as a border area with neighbor countries, the border region should be the front door of Indonesia.
Jokowi issued the Presidential Instruction No. 6 of 2015 on the Accelerated Development of Seven Integrated PLBN and Supporting Facilities in Border Areas. Revitalization of border areas is one of the Medium-Term National Development Plan (RPJMN) 2015-2019. President Joko Widodo asserted that the Border Post of The Republic of Indonesia (PLBN) should reflect a national pride, nationalism, and dignity.
Of the seven PLBNs, one of which has been inaugurated by President Jokowi is PLBN Skouw located in Muara Tami District, Jayapura City, Papua. PLBN Skouw has been inaugurated on May 9, 2017. The distance is about 60 km from Jayapura City with travel time about 90 minutes.
The seven PLBNs were developed as an integrated area. That is, in the region also built a commercial area to improve the economy. After the PLBN building was inaugurated, the Ministry of Public Works and People’s Housing (PUPR) continued the development of the area. The prepared land is 10.7 ha.
In the area of PLBN Skouw is now being built 400 market kiosks, Indonesian homestead, home for office border officials which complete with residential infrastructure. The design of Skouw Integrated PLBN has brings local Papuan culture. The design adapts from the typical of Tangfa House building with local ornaments on the outside of the building. Tangfa House is a coastal house in the Skouw area, which has a roof with a shield shape and two long rooms for people gather. PLBN Skouw is also designed by using green building principles.
The development of PLBN Skouw started on December 18, 2015, which was done by PT Nindya Karya (Persero). In Phase one has been constructed PLBN Core Zone consisting of PLBN main building, main cargo inspection building, utility building, checkpoint, Tasbara Gate, weighbridge, car wash, clinic, and Tasbara monument.
As quoted from presidenRI.go.id, President Jokowi believes with integrated buildings and facilities and a more modern system, PLBN Skouw will work easier to control the smuggling. But the most important issue is export from Papua to Papua New Guinea. Regarding the PLBN as a new economic center, the President explained that later there will be built a modern market, so the PLBN will also become a big trading center. With PLBN Skouw, later the increase in exports will be more visible, both garment, electronics, groceries, and others. He also requested that smuggling of goods that often happens can be stopped immediately. He would want the commodities traded domestically to be legal goods.
(KOMPAS.com, presidenRI.co.id, JPNN.com)
Keywords: Papua, West Papua, Jayapura, border areas, Skouw PLBN, development, RPJMN, economy, Papuans, RI-PNG
Sakhiyatun K (MaCDIS Researcher)