from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Republic of Indonesia
Republic of Indonesia
Flag of indonesia
Coat of arms of Indonesia
flag emblem
Motto : Bhinneka Tunggal Ika
( "Unity in Diversity")
Official language Indonesian
Capital Jakarta
State and form of government presidential republic 1
Head of state , also head of government President Joko Widodo
surface 1,904,569 ( 14th ) km²
population 270.6 million ( 4th ) (2019; estimate)
Population density 148 inhabitants per km²
Population development + 1.1% (estimate for 2019)
gross domestic product
  • Total (nominal)
  • Total ( PPP )
  • GDP / inh. (nom.)
  • GDP / inh. (KKP)
  • $ 1.1 trillion ( 16. )
  • $ 3.3 trillion ( 7. )
  • 4,197 USD ( 118. )
  • 12,483 USD ( 107. )
Human Development Index 0.718 ( 107th ) (2019)
currency Rupiah (IDR)
independence August 17, 1945
December 27, 1949
(recognized by the Netherlands )
National anthem Indonesia Raya
Time zone UTC + 7 to UTC + 9
License Plate RI
ISO 3166 ID , IDN, 360
Internet TLD .id
Phone code +62
1The constituent state of Yogyakarta is a monarchy.
Japan Guam Osttimor Vanuatu Indonesien Hawaii Papua-Neuguinea Salomonen Norfolkinseln Neuseeland Australien Fidschi Neukaledonien Antarktika Frankreich (Kergulen) Philippinen Volksrepublik China Singapur Malaysia Brunei Vietnam Nepal Bhutan Laos Thailand Kambodscha Myanmar Bangladesch Mongolei Nordkorea Südkorea Indien Pakistan Sri Lanka Russland Republik China (Taiwan) Malediven Kasachstan Afghanistan Iran Oman Jemen Saudi-Arabien Vereinigte Arabische Emirate Katar Kuwait Irak Georgien Armenien Aserbaidschan Türkei Eritrea Dschibuti Somalia Äthiopien Kenia Sudan Madagaskar Komoren Mayotte Réunion Mauritius Tansania Mosambik Turkmenistan Usbekistan Tadschikistan Kirgistan Japan Vereinigte Staaten (Nördliche Marianen) Föderierte Staaten von Mikronesien Palau Japan Vereinigte Staaten (Wake) Marshallinseln KiribatiIndonesia on the globe (Southeast Asia centered) .svg
About this picture
Template: Infobox State / Maintenance / NAME-GERMAN

Indonesia ( Indonesian Indonesia ) is a republic in Southeast Asia . With over 270 million inhabitants, Indonesia is the fourth most populous country in the world and the world's largest island nation . Indonesia is also the country with the largest number of Muslims in the world.

Indonesia is largely part of the Asian continent , but its part of the country on the island of New Guinea belongs to the Australian continent . Indonesia is bordered on the island of Borneo in Malaysia , on the island of New Guinea in Papua New Guinea and the island of Timor to East Timor .

The country is spread over a total of 17,508 islands. More than half of the population of Indonesia live on the island of Java . Indonesia's capital Jakarta, with a population of around ten million, is also located here.

The declaration of independence took place on August 17, 1945, and was recognized by the Netherlands on December 27, 1949 after a war of civil secession .

Country name

The name Indonesia is a word creation from the Greek and is composed of Indo- for India and nesos for island. The name is an analogy to Polynesia , Micronesia and Melanesia . It prevailed in the European languages ​​through the book series Indonesia or the Islands of the Malay Archipelago by the German geographer and ethnologist Adolf Bastian , the first volume of which was published in Berlin in 1884.



In terms of area and population, the equatorial island chain is the largest state in Southeast Asia , the world's largest island state and, with around 270 million inhabitants, the fourth most populous nation in the world. The land area of ​​Indonesia is distributed over 17,508 islands, of which 6,044 are inhabited. The main islands are Sumatra , Java , Borneo ( Indonesian Kalimantan ), Sulawesi and New Guinea . Indonesia extends north-south from latitude 5 ° 54 '08 "north to latitude 11 ° 08' 20" south over 1882 km, and east-west from 95 ° 00 '38 "to 141 ° 01' 12" east Length over 5114 km.

To the north of Indonesia are Malaysia, Singapore , the Philippines and Palau , to the east of Papua New Guinea and East Timor , to the south of Australia and to the west and south of the Indian Ocean . Indonesia is delimited from the Malay Peninsula with western Malaysia and Singapore by the Strait of Malacca, and towards the Philippine Islands the border crosses the Celebes Sea .

The Indonesian island kingdom is traversed by a large number of straits , shallow tributaries and lake basins . In the north, one of the most important waterways, the Strait of Malacca, runs from the Andaman Sea to the Karimata Strait , which leads north into the South China Sea and south into the Java Sea .

The Java Sea is centrally located and in the south connected to the Indian Ocean by straits such as the Sunda or Lombok Strait . From the Celebes Sea the Strait of Makassar moves into the eastern Java Sea and the Flores Sea , which borders the Banda Sea with the Moluccas . Other smaller marine areas lie south. Over the Indonesian part of the island of New Guinea lies the Pacific Ocean in the north and the Arafura Sea to the south in the direction of Australia and the Timor Sea further west .

Indonesia includes the large (except for the northern part of Borneo) and the Lesser Sunda Islands (except for East Timor ) as well as the Moluccas , and thus the largest part of the Malay Archipelago . Western New Guinea (formerly Irian Jaya ) also belongs to Indonesia. So Indonesia is not only in Asia , but also has a share in Australia .

The largest and most important city in Indonesia is the capital Jakarta , which is the commercial and financial center. Other important cities are Surabaya , Medan and Bandung .


Island region Area
Share of
total area
(2015) [3]
Share of total
Sumatra 480,848 25.2% 55.198.752 21.6%
Java 129,438 6.8% 145.013.583 56.8%
Lesser Sunda Islands 73.070 3.8% 14.091.466 5.5%
Borneo (Kalimantan) 544.150 28.5% 15.320.017 6.0%
Sulawesi 188,522 9.9% 18,702,298 7.3%
Moluccas 74.505 3.9% 2,844,131 1.1%
Western New Guinea 420,540 22.0% 4,011,907 1.6%
Indonesia 1,911,073 100.0% 255.182.154 100.0%


Indonesia is one of the largest rainforest areas in the world. On Borneo, Sumatra, West Java, Papua, the Moluccas and Sulawesi there is always a humid tropical climate. Temperatures hardly fluctuate over the course of the year and averages between 25 ° C and 27 ° C. With a relative humidity of 95% and prevailing calm one also speaks of tropical humidity. The annual rainfall is between 2000 mm and 4000 mm.

In the rest of Java, the Lesser Sunda Islands and the Aru Islands, the monsoons determine the climate. It ensures consistently high temperatures, which can, however, fluctuate from 6 ° C to 12 ° C within 24 hours. The northeast monsoon mainly carries dry air and thus triggers a dry season (called winter monsoon).

During this period of low precipitation, the trees shed their leaves and go through a kind of rest phase in which the so-called monsoon forests (light, green forests with a pronounced herbaceous layer) arise. The southwest monsoon absorbs moisture over the warm sea and leads to high precipitation over the mainland, which can reach up to 50 mm during the day and often lead to flooding.


The landforms of modern Indonesia developed from the Pleistocene , when today's island region was still connected to the Asian mainland. The archipelago was formed during the thaw after the first ice age . The country is volcanic and therefore very mountainous. An extension of the Pacific Ring of Fire only touches northeast Indonesia. Most earthquakes and volcanoes are caused by the subduction of the eastern plate of the Indian Ocean under the Sunda Shelf. Despite the threats from earthquakes and tsunamis and the frequently active volcanoes (June 2004: Mount Bromo and Mount Awu eruptions; since the beginning of 2006 Merapi in Central Java with threatening activities that led to a repeated eruption in 2010), some islands, especially Java, densely populated, as the soils are very fertile and, in connection with the tropical climate, enable intensive agricultural use.

Flora and fauna


Due to its geographical location on both sides of the equator, Indonesia has an extremely tropical climate with monsoon winds, which bring a dry climate with little rain from June to September and humid air masses and a lot of precipitation from December to March.

The Wallace Line , which describes a biogeographical dividing line between Asian (western) and Australian (eastern) dominated flora and fauna, runs in the northern part of the archipelago between Borneo and Sulawesi and in the southern part between Bali and Lombok . This line was named after the English naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace , who discovered during his travels between 1854 and 1862 that certain Asian mammals such as elephants , tigers , tapirs and orangutans do occur in Borneo, Java and Bali (or at least in historical times), but not on Sulawesi, the Moluccas and the Lesser Sunda Islands.

In Indonesia and the so-called Coral Triangle , between Malaysia , East Timor , the Philippines , Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands , around 75 percent of all known coral species and more than 3000 species of fish, turtles, many dolphins and whales as well as large sharks and rays live according to WWF data .

Many rare plants such as orchids or Rafflesia also grow in the rainforest .

With its extra large biodiversity and biodiversity (in North Borneo and West New Guinea are two of the five centers of the greatest biodiversity on Earth ), with very many endemic species, genera and families of plants and animals as well as large ecosystems Indonesia is one of the mega-diversity countries on earth . Due to the high risk situation, Indonesia - with the exception of West New Guiena - is listed as a biodiversity hotspot .

Environmental situation

Water condition

From the aircraft and even from satellite images, the US company Freeport-McMoRan , which is listed on the stock exchange, clearly shows how over 250 km² of destructive river disposal through mine waste from the Grasberg mine in western New Guinea. The procedure of river disposal (English " riverine disposal ") is banned in the USA and other mining industrial countries because of their long-term environmental damage . Indonesia also issued such a ban in 2001. For Freeport-McMoRan, thanks to good relations with the Indonesian government, the clauses of the unpublished concession agreement, which do not contain any environmental requirements, apply. In addition to the overburden, acid mine water is the main environmental problem that also threatens the neighboring Lorentz National Park .

The phenomenon of coral bleaching occurs on the coast of Sulawesi . Attempts are made to counteract the destruction caused by artificial coral reefs . Steel structures are placed under a weak direct current, which results in mineral accretion and colonization with corals . This Biorock technology was developed by the architect Wolf Hilbertz .

Fishing for cyanide and dynamite is now banned. Nevertheless, cyanide fishing in particular is still the order of the day in many places.

Together with five other neighboring countries, Indonesia has decided to protect the Coral Triangle. At a conference in Manado (Indonesia) it was decided to declare a fifth of the coastal waters, in which corals, mangroves and seaweed occur, a protection zone. There are 300 million dollars available for this. This money will help protect a third of all coral reefs worldwide and thousands of species of fish.

Forest condition

The rainforest in Indonesia is considered to be the most biodiverse in the world. Nevertheless, large areas of forest are being cut down. According to forecasts by the United Nations Environment Program , 98% of Indonesia's forests will be degraded or disappeared by 2022. 80% of Indonesia's CO 2 emissions are due to deforestation. In addition to legal logging, illegal logging is responsible for deforestation of up to almost two million hectares per year. In the period from 1985 to 1997, around 17 percent of the Indonesian forest was cleared. About 88% of Indonesia's wood comes from illegal logging. The destruction of the rainforest habitat is also reflected in the species population of Indonesia: The country currently has the longest list of endangered animal and plant species. The genus of the orangutan , which still occurs on Sumatra and Borneo , is one of the flagship species here .

In the national economic accounts, primary forests are often viewed as unproductive, since the rainforest hardly produces any products for sale on national markets or on the world market. For the local population, however, the rainforest and its traditional uses such as hunting, fishing, collecting forest products, small-scale felling and shifting cultivation often form the basis of life. Internationally active agriculture and forestry companies clear or burn down the rainforest in order to create plantations. Above all, wood is felled for processing in paper production and palm oil plantations are built on the cleared areas to generate energy. Rainforest is also cut down in search of mineral resources. When forests are burned down, especially in areas with peat- rich soils, enormous amounts of the carbon bound in the vegetation are released. The resulting emissions of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide accelerate global global warming . In addition, there is heavy smoke, which at times spreads to neighboring countries Malaysia , Singapore and Brunei , causing health and economic damage there and leading to political conflicts. The smoke was particularly strong and persistent for months in 1983/84, 1997/98 and 2006. In the 2010s , devastating uncontrolled forest fires due to slash and burn occurred almost every year . In 2015, a total of 21,633 fires were counted, the government reported. Compared to 2018, the forest fire area in 2019 almost doubled in the first five months.

The soils on the islands of Indonesia are mostly poor in nutrients. Agricultural use is therefore only possible to a limited extent. Parts of the indigenous population therefore practice shifting cultivation on small plots cleared in the rainforest. Larger areas are cleared by immigrant settlers (transmigrasi) . The cleared areas are often only built on for a few years and then abandoned in a degraded manner. The elephant grass (Saccharum ravennae) often settles there .

Nature and environmental protection

Indonesia is one of the hotspots of biodiversity and, in addition to valuable forest ecosystems, is home to large stocks of tropical corals. Numerous nature conservation organizations from Indonesia and western countries are committed to the preservation of nature on site. Nevertheless, currently (2013) in Indonesia 2 million hectares of primeval forest annually, mainly in the lowland rainforest of Sumatra, are being cleared and converted into palm oil plantations , which means that Indonesia has overtaken Brazil in terms of the extent of rainforest destruction.

Overall, the destruction of the forest releases more CO 2 than is saved by adding it to the fuel. One consequence is e.g. For example, orangutans and other primates lose their habitat due to clearing and are fought as pests on the plantations. Further consequences are violent land conflicts with local smallholders, erosion, the risk of drought and increasing forest fires (so in 2009 and 2019 in Borneo, 2010, 2011 and 2019 in Sumatra). Whereas in 1990 two thirds of Indonesia were still covered by forest, in 2010 it was only a good half (94 million hectares); of this, in turn, only half were left in untouched natural forests.

Natural events

Earthquakes and volcanic activity are common.

The largest earthquake disaster in Indonesia's recent history was the seaquake in the Indian Ocean on December 26, 2004 . When the earth shook off the northwest coast of Sumatra at around 7:58 a.m. local time , many places were badly damaged. It was - with 9.1 on the Richter scale - the third strongest earthquake ever recorded (heaviest earthquake on May 22, 1960 in Chile with a magnitude of 9.5; the second strongest earthquake in Alaska in 1964 (9.2)). Only about 15 minutes later, people, especially on the west coast of Sumatra in the region around Banda Aceh and Meulaboh , were surprised by a tsunami up to 15 meters high . Entire coastal areas were devastated in just a few minutes. Over 170,000 people died in Indonesia alone.

A 6.2 magnitude earthquake with catastrophic effects occurred on May 27, 2006 in central Java near Yogyakarta . According to the government, almost 5,800 people died, up to 57,800 were injured, more than 130,000 houses were destroyed or badly damaged and up to 650,000 people were left homeless. It also led to a further increase in the activities of the Merapi volcano .

Since May 29, 2006, a mud volcano has formed near Sidoarjo on Java . 100 ° C hot mud has welled and wells up from the earth to this day, thousands of people have been evacuated.

On July 17, 2006, an earthquake occurred off Java with a subsequent tsunami . 525 people died and 38,000 were left homeless. The city of Pangandaran on the Indonesian island of Java was particularly hard hit. The forwarding of the tsunami warning was missed. A 6.2 magnitude quake occurred again on July 19, 2006 off the Indonesian coast, said the Jakarta earthquake warning center and this time relayed the warning.

On March 6, 2007, an earthquake with a magnitude of 6.3 struck West Sumatra with over 70 dead and several hundred injured (as of March 6). The quake and one of the several lighter aftershocks could still be felt in Singapore , which is over 400 km away , so that several high-rise buildings were evacuated there.

On November 16, 2008 another earthquake with a magnitude of 7.7 was registered on the central Indonesian island of Sulawesi.

On January 4, 2009 at 2:43 a.m., an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.2 occurred in western New Guinea, which was followed by 18 aftershocks, of which at 5:33 a.m. the strongest was recorded at 7.6 on the Richter scale. At least four people were killed in the quake (as of January 4, 2009 6:28 pm).


Indonesia has a young population

Indonesia's population has grown rapidly over the past few decades. It rose from 69 million in 1950 to almost 260 million in 2016. The growth has now slowed, but the population is growing by 3 million annually. By the middle of the century, Indonesia is expected to have more than 300 million people. The birth rate per woman was 2.5 children in 2015 and has fallen continuously since 1950. Life expectancy at birth was 68.6 years between 2010 and 2015 (men: 66.6 years, women 70.7 years). The median age in 2016 was 29.2 years.

Population development since 1950

year population year population
1950 069,543,000 1985 165,012,000
1955 077,328,000 1990 181,437,000
1960 087,793,000 1995 196,958,000
1965 100,309,000 2000 211,540,000
1970 114,835,000 2005 226,713,000
1975 130,724,000 2010 242,524,000
1980 147,490,000 2016 258,162,000

Source: UN World Population Prospects

Population density

Distribution of the population in Indonesia

The population density is very different on the Indonesian islands. There are also strong differences between the regions of individual islands. While the provinces of Papua , Maluku and Northern Moluccas live on average a maximum of 30 people per square kilometer, the population density on the Indonesian part of Borneo is between 10 and 100 inhabitants / km² and on Sumatra between 30 and 300 inhabitants / km². It is highest on Java with over 1,000 inhabitants / km² (comparison: City-state of Hamburg : 2,395 / km²). The most densely populated provinces Jakarta and Yogyakarta are also located there .

Java has a very high population density due to the fertile soil and the capital, which has led to a large gap in progress between the island groups. The government has therefore been relocating families from Java to sparsely populated islands since 1969 as part of the Transmigration , the Transmigrasi project, which in turn has led to many conflicts and problems.

Ethnic groups

Ethnic groups in Indonesia

According to the 2001 Indonesian census, there are almost 360 different peoples in Indonesia, most of whom are of Malay origin. It was only towards the end of the Dutch colonial era that the term Indonesian was preferred to the tribal name that had been customary up until then. However, there are strong regional autonomy and secession efforts. Against this background, all national governments were faced with the challenge of forging a common nation out of ethnic diversity. Nation-building was and is therefore a leitmotif of Indonesian politics.

The individual peoples are distributed as follows: Javanese (41.7%), Sundanese (15.4%), Malay (3.4%), Madurese (3.3%), Batak (3.0%), Minangkabau ( 2.7%), Betawi (2.5%), Bugis (2.5%), Bantenesen (2.1%), Banjarese (1.7%), Balinese (1.5%), Sasak (1, 3%), Makassarese (1.0%), Cirebon (0.9%), Chinese (0.9%), Gorontalo (0.8%), Achinese (0.4%) (although only about half of the population of Aceh state was recorded), Torajas (0.4%)

Malay peoples

Woman in Indonesian clothing: kain (wrap skirt) and kebaya (blouse).

The largest proportion of the population, with a share of around two thirds, is made up of the Young Malay, to which the Javanese, Sundanese and Madurese belong. Around 5% of the population are Old Malay, including the Dayak on Borneo, the Batak on Sumatra and the Toraja on Sulawesi.

Malay peoples now make up the majority in Sumatra, Java, Sulawesi, Bali and, through immigration, also in Borneo. In contrast, in the east there are predominantly peoples who have emerged from the intermingling of Malay immigrants and the original Melanesian population. In Western New Guinea, the original population consists exclusively of Melanesians ( Papuans ), but their proportion has fallen to about half of the population due to Malay immigration.

There are also z. B. the Achinese , Torajas, Bajau , Bauzi , Lampung , Tengger , Osing , Badui , Minangkabau , Gorontalo and many other groups, but they usually make up less than one percent of the total population and groups of mixed ethnic origin, such as those living on Sumba Wewewa , who are half of Malay and half of Melanesian origin. In addition, there are still a few Polynesian peoples living in the island state.

Minorities are the remnant groups of peoples who lived on the islands before the arrival of the Malays, including Kubu , Lubu , Ulu and Sakai , which can only be found in retreat areas .

As the numerically largest ethnic group, the Javanese are the politically dominant group in Indonesia. The controversial Transmigrasi program attempted to solve the problem of population concentration on the island of Java (approx. 1000 inhabitants per km²), which led to bloody clashes with the local population, especially on Borneo and Sulawesi .

Chinese minority

A total of 7.89 million overseas Chinese live in Indonesia, most of them on the main island of Java. But the Chinese are also native to Sumatra and Borneo. Most of the Chinese came to the country when Indonesia was still a Dutch colony .

After Indonesia gained independence in 1949, many Chinese were forced out of the country. The government banned Chinese without Indonesian citizenship from small towns and stripped tens of thousands of livelihoods. President Sukarno wanted to give the Pribumi (indigenous Indonesians) control of trade in the villages. An agreement was concluded with the People's Republic in 1956 to reduce dual citizenship . After Suharto came to power and the massacre of alleged communists in Indonesia in 1965–1966 (the Chinese were also accused of being communists), Suharto issued a presidential decree on "The Politics to Solve the Chinese Problem" and another on religion, belief and Chinese Customs.

Chinese-language schools were closed, cultural associations were disbanded, the sale of Chinese-language books and magazines, and even the use of Chinese characters in calendars, company logos, and shops were banned. A single state-controlled Chinese-language daily newspaper was allowed. The Indonesization of Chinese names has been massively promoted. Features of cultural identity such as celebrating the Chinese New Year were banned or banned from private households. The ID cards of many ethnic Chinese differ from those of the Pribumi by a special code. In February 1998, a representative of the Indonesian Defense Ministry even admitted that ethnic Chinese face difficulties in pursuing a career as civil servant or in the military, and that they are also disadvantaged in accessing state universities.

The revision of the discriminatory laws was ordered in a decree on September 16, 1998 by the then President Bacharuddin Jusuf Habibie .


Religions in Indonesia

With around 230 million Muslims, Indonesia is the country with the largest Muslim population in the world (see also List of Countries by Religion ). However, Islam is not the state religion . However , all citizens of the island state have to profess one of five recognized world religions. This is firmly prescribed by the state ideology Pancasila . Citizens can only follow the teachings of Islam, Christianity (Catholic and Protestant), Buddhism, Confucianism or Hinduism. This represents a significant restriction on religious freedom . Some ethnic groups therefore indicate one of these official religions, but actually continue to practice their traditional beliefs .

87% of Indonesians are Muslim (around 225 million). Most of them follow the Sunni direction. Only about 100,000 Shiites live in Indonesia . Many Indonesians practice a syncretistic form of Islam. Followers of this form were referred to as Abangan by the ethnologist (cultural and social anthropologist) Clifford Geertz , in contrast to the Santri , who are based on dogmatic Islam.

In Indonesia, in the course of democratization, there has been an increased turn to religion and a shift to the right in society.

26 million Indonesians, around 10% of the population, are Christians (around 7% Protestant and 3% members of the Roman Catholic Church in Indonesia ). Christianity made its way to the islands sporadically in the 16th century. Many previously non-Islamic peoples, such as the Torajas in South Sulawesi or the Batak in North Sumatra, were not proselytized to Christianity until the 19th and 20th centuries. German missionaries played a decisive role in the missionary work of the Batak. The inhabitants of today's East Nusa Tenggara and those of the Moluccas (spice islands) converted as early as the 16th and 17th centuries (areas occupied by Portuguese at that time). In some areas of Indonesia, Christians are in the majority, but this has started to change due to the transmigrasi and the different birth rates. The east of Indonesia ( Flores , West Timor ) is particularly Catholic . Apart from that, many Christians also live in the major cities of Java and Sumatra. Clashes between Muslims and Christians have cost the lives of more than 10,000 people since 1999. In Western New Guinea, the wave of violence against the animist-Christian Papuan population continues to this day.

1.8% of the population are Hindus (especially widespread in Bali and Lombok ) and 1% Buddhists (mostly members of the Chinese minority). There is also a very small Jewish minority .

Ancestor cult and belief in the spirits of traditional ethnic religions are still very important to many Indonesians, especially among the indigenous groups.


The causes of health problems in Indonesia are poor air quality due to industrial pollution, maternal and child mortality, damage to health due to high smoking rates (over 50% of the male population) and various communicable tropical diseases. In 2014, the country spent 2.9% of its economic output on healthcare, which is well below the global average. There is also a severe shortage of doctors in Indonesia (according to the WHO , there were only 0.2 doctors for every 1,000 inhabitants in 2012), and there is a shortage of 500,000 hospital beds nationwide. The deficiencies are particularly large on remote islands and in rural regions of the country. Despite this, there was a strong improvement in most health indicators. Child mortality fell from 85 per 1,000 births in 1990 to 27 in 2015, and average life expectancy rose to just under 70 years. Indonesia's HIV infection rate was only 0.1% of the population. In 2014 Indonesia introduced the universal health care "National Health Insurance " ( Jaminan Kesehatan Nasional ), which should cover the entire population by 2019. To achieve this goal, the country's government has opened the national healthcare system to private, foreign investors. The health sector is therefore currently one of the fastest growing parts of the Indonesian economy.

Life expectancy development in Indonesia since 1950:

Period Life expectancy in
Period Life expectancy in
1950-1955 43.5 1985-1990 62.4
1955-1960 47.0 1990-1995 64.2
1960-1965 50.2 1995-2000 65.8
1965-1970 53.1 2000-2005 66.7
1970-1975 55.9 2005-2010 67.7
1975-1980 58.5 2010-2015 68.6
1980-1985 60.7 2015-2018 71.5

Source: UN, Statista

Social structures

Over 27% of the total of 241 million Indonesians live in poverty , although there are large regional differences. While in Java, the main island of the country, about 23% live in poverty, there are some provinces, especially in the east, where the percentage of the poor population is 44%.

There are extensive slums, especially in large cities like Jakarta . There are around 1.7 million street children on Java .

In 2015, 7.9% of the population were malnourished. In 2000 the share was still 17.8%. The mean school attendance of the over twenty-five year olds increased from 3.3 years in 1990 to 7.9 years in 2015. The educational expectation for the current generation is 12.9 years. In 2015, 93.6% of the population could read and write.

Human rights

Although the judiciary previously rarely prosecuted human rights violations , Indonesia ratified the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in 2005 . In 2006 and 2007, various provisions of the Criminal Code that had previously been used to persecute members of the opposition were declared unconstitutional. However, according to Amnesty International , serious human rights violations continue: at least 117 people were detained as prisoners of conscience in 2008. In Indonesia, the death penalty has been imposed for various crimes and has been used increasingly since May 2004.

Since President Suharto's resignation in 1998, many restrictions on freedom of expression for political parties, trade unions and the rest of civil society have been lifted. However, flags that symbolize the independence of individual regions of Indonesia are still forbidden. In 2006, the Constitutional Court ruled that three articles of the Criminal Code were unconstitutional which made "insulting the President" a criminal offense. The articles were used to restrict freedom of expression. In July 2007, two further articles were declared unconstitutional. They also led to persecution when criticizing government institutions and, according to Amnesty International, had been used to persecute members of the opposition.

While most of the people in Indonesia follow a moderate Islam, Sharia has been in force in Aceh Province since 2001 . As part of a peace agreement with the central government to end separatist fighting in the province, Aceh was granted semi-autonomous status in 2005. There the Islamic Religious Police takes massive action against behavior that has been declared “un-Islamic”: Anyone who disregards dress codes is punished, and premarital sex is punished there. Other deviant behavior in everyday life can be punished with "re-education measures" staged as a deterrent, as a group of punks learned in December 2011 . In June 2012, an avowed 30-year-old atheist was sentenced to two and a half years in prison.

Blasphemy laws, censorship and threats from radical political and religious groups hinder journalistic freedom in Indonesia. The possibilities of independent reporting on the Indonesian military and the situation in the troubled West Papua region are also severely limited.


The Indonesian population originally comes from Austronesian peoples who came to the country in several waves of immigration before the beginning of our era. The discovery of the Java man proves that the island was settled around 1.8 million years ago.

In the first millennium AD Buddhism and Hinduism gained influence on Indonesia and merged with beliefs of the original peasant culture. Because of the favorable location on the sea trade route from China to India, trade flourished and several trading empires emerged.

The most influential and well-known kingdom of Srivijaya on Sumatra existed since around 500 and took over rule over all of Sumatra and Java, parts of Borneo and the Malay Peninsula by around 700 . From the 11th century the empire began to disintegrate, among other things due to attacks by the Indian Chola kings who wanted to eliminate unpleasant trade competition. Between 1275 and 1290, the King of Singhasari finally took control of most of Indonesia. In Java, the Majapahit empire gained in importance from 1293 onwards and soon ruled over the former areas of Srivijaya.

From the 15th century, more and more Arab traders visited Indonesia and the conversion to Islam began. Hinduism and Buddhism survive to this day only on the islands of Bali (see for example: Besakih ) and Lombok , where an indigenous (but mostly Hindu-influenced) mixed culture has developed.

In 1487, the Portuguese Bartolomeu Diaz circumnavigated the Cape of Good Hope for the first time , thus preparing the discovery of the sea route to India by Vasco da Gama . As a result, the Europeans advanced into the Indonesian region to take over the spice trade previously operated by the Malays, Arabs and Chinese. After almost 100 years of Portuguese dominance, the Dutch asserted themselves as colonial rulers around 1600. As the Dutch East Indies , Indonesia was one of the first Dutch colonies. By 1908, the Netherlands had extended their sphere of influence, starting from Java, to the entire Indonesian archipelago. Only the province of Aceh (Atjeh) in northern Sumatra was able to resist, but was also subjugated after a war lasting over thirty years.

In the spring of 1942 the Japanese army began to occupy the Dutch East Indies. They were interested in raw material reserves that were essential to the war effort and in improving their strategic position. In March 1942 the Dutch surrendered. The almost 350 years of their colonial rule were over. While still under Japanese occupation, Indonesia declared itself independent from the Netherlands in March 1943. The rule of the Japanese ended on August 15, 1945 with their surrender .

Sukarno (around 1949)

On August 17, 1945 , Sukarno and Mohammad Hatta proclaimed Indonesia's independence. The influence of the Republic of Indonesia initially extended to the islands of Java, Sumatra and Madura . The remaining islands were mostly controlled by the Dutch. In a constitution from 1945 the right to vote was given to women and men, but this introduction of the right to vote for women happened in a politically confusing situation with unclear power relations.

In the Dutch-Indonesian War (1947/48) the Netherlands conquered almost the entire area, but continued to fight against an Indonesian guerrilla and above all lost the sympathy of the world public, not least because of the massacre on December 9, 1947 in the village of Rawagede ( West Java) with 431 dead, in which only ten men survived. Estimates of the total number of Indonesian civilians killed today range between a few tens of thousands and two hundred thousand. Under American pressure, the Netherlands had to start (again) negotiations with the Republic of Indonesia in August 1949. On December 27, 1949, the transfer of sovereignty was signed in Amsterdam , but Dutch New Guinea remained under colonial administration for the time being.

A Dutch-Indonesian Union still existed until 1954, but it broke up in the dispute over New Guinea. In 1955 elections were held for the first time. In the new parliament after 1955 there were only a few women, 18 out of 257 MPs. There were no women in the government. In the period that followed, progress was slow.

The formation of the neighboring state of Malaysia in 1963 was rejected by Indonesia, which led to the conflict between the two states, known as the Konfrontasi .

Suharto 1965

On September 30th / 1. October 1965 there was a coup attempt by parts of the military . The right-wing General Suharto put down the uprising and declared the communist party PKI , which was not involved in the attempted coup, to be guilty. He banned them and subsequently instigated a massacre by the military among actual and alleged communists in which, according to Amnesty International estimates, nearly a million people were killed in the months that followed. The Chinese minority were also among the victims. Suharto received support from the USA (ruled 1963–1969 by US President Lyndon B. Johnson ).

Suharto forced Sukarno to resign. The incorporation of Western New Guinea followed three years later. When the independence of the Portuguese Timor colony became apparent in 1975 , Indonesian troops began to occupy the border areas in camouflage. After East Timor's independence was proclaimed on November 28, the open invasion followed nine days later .

After the economic crisis in 1998 there were first protests. The violence peaked on May 12-14, 1998 in Jakarta. There were also allegations of corruption against President Suharto and Bacharuddin Jusuf Habibie called for the president to resign. Eventually President Suharto agreed to his resignation and Bacharuddin Jusuf Habibie took power for the time being. In October 1999, Abdurrahman Wahid became the country's first freely elected president, and two years later Megawati Sukarnoputri , daughter of the state's founder, Sukarno.

On October 12, 2002, the terrorist attack occurred on the tourist island of Bali , which left 202 dead and more than 300 injured. In the summer of 2004, direct presidential elections took place for the first time, in which no candidate could achieve a majority. In a runoff election on September 20, challenger and former general Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono won . He was followed by Joko Widodo in 2014 .

In recent years, Indonesia has been hit by natural disasters time and again. On December 26, 2004, a tsunami devastated large parts of the Aceh province in Sumatra and claimed many lives. In 2006 there was a magnitude 6 earthquake in Yogyakarta, which also severely damaged the Prambanan World Heritage Site . In 2007 the volcano " Anak Krakatau " was very active. In 2018 an earthquake and a subsequent tsunami destroyed the city of Palu and its surroundings, the death toll was estimated at 1200.


Administrative structure

Indonesia is currently divided into 31 provinces ( Provinsi ), two special regions and the capital district ( Daerah Khusus Ibukota ) Jakarta . The administrative level among the provinces is formed by 501 administrative districts ( Kabupaten ), which have been of great administrative importance since the administrative reform in 2001.

In recent years, several new provinces and administrative districts have been separated from the existing ones, such as the provinces Papua Barat 2003, Sulawesi Barat 2004 and Kalimantan Utara 2012. Further changes in the administrative structure are planned.

Since independence, efforts have been made to replace the densely populated Jakarta, which has been hit by floods and earthquakes, as the capital. Possible candidates are in Borneo, which should also better balance the dominance of the Javanese in Indonesia.

Political system

The former Dutch colony is now a presidential republic - the president is both head of state and head of government and commander in chief of the armed forces. The 1945 constitution provides for the separation of powers . The President appoints the members of his cabinet who do not have to be members of Parliament. The term of office of the President is limited to two terms of office of 5 years each. After the fall of Suharto in 1998, extensive reforms were implemented. The lower house (House of Representatives) has 500 members elected for five years (up to 2004, 38 of them were military officials appointed by the president). The consultative people's assembly, which previously elected the president and advises on overarching political issues, consists of the House of Representatives, 135 representatives from the provinces and 65 representatives from professional organizations and thus has 700 members.

Since a constitutional amendment in 2004, the Majelis Permusyawaratan Rakyat (MPR) is a bicameral parliament . This highest legislative body consists of 550 members of the DPR ( Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat ) and 128 regional representatives (DPD). The DPD ( Dewan Perwakilan Daerah ) is a newly created second chamber as part of the decentralization policy. However, the assembly of regional representatives only has hearing and proposal rights in the legislative process and is therefore not a fully fledged legislative “second chamber”. Ten parties are currently (2017) represented in parliament - the largest parliamentary group is the Partai Demokrasi Indonesia - Perjuangan (PDI-P) of President Joko Widodo, elected with around 19% of the votes (election on April 9, 2014) .

Since the 2004 elections, Indonesia has been recognized by the world as a democratic state.


Joko Widodo

Since 2004 the president has been directly elected by the people. The first directly elected president was the former general Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono . The former security minister received almost 61 percent of the vote in the runoff election on September 20, 2004. He replaced the previous head of state Megawati Sukarnoputri , who only got a good 39 percent. In the first ballot on July 5, 2004, the ex-general had won the most votes, but missed the absolute majority. Therefore, a runoff election against the second placed Megawati had become necessary. The daughter of the founder of the republic, Sukarno , moved to the head of the state in the summer of 2001 after her predecessor Abdurrahman Wahid was ousted from office. Joko Widodo won the elections in 2014 and 2019 .


Indonesia has a multiparty system with a large number of parties. The ruling party under Suharto was Golkar . Their influence is still great, but no longer dominant. Former President Yudhoyono ran for the newly founded Democratic Party in the 2004 presidential election , while his predecessor and opponent Megawati ran for the PDI-P .

Political indices

Political indices issued by non-governmental organizations
Name of the index Index value Worldwide rank Interpretation aid year
Fragile States Index 67.8 out of 120 96 of 178 Stability of the country: Warning
0 = very sustainable / 120 = very alarming
Democracy index 6.3 out of 10 64 of 167 Incomplete democracy
0 = authoritarian regime / 10 = complete democracy
Freedom in the World Index 61 of 100 - Freedom status: partially free
0 = not free / 100 = free
Freedom of the press ranking 37.4 out of 100 113 of 180 Difficult situation for freedom of the press
0 = good situation / 100 = very serious situation
Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 37 of 100 102 of 180 0 = very corrupt / 100 = very clean 2020

Foreign policy

Locations of the Indonesian diplomatic missions

Indonesia is a regional power. The country's foreign policy is guided by the motto “bebas dan aktif”, which can be translated as “independent and active”. Jakarta thus avoids close ties to powers outside the Southeast Asian region, which applies to the People's Republic of China as well as the USA, and instead tries to find its own way in international relations. Indonesia was an important member of the Non-Aligned Movement during the Cold War . This claim to independence and importance is borne by Indonesia's colonial experiences and its demographic and geographic size.

Relations with ASEAN and the EU

The most populous country in Southeast Asia has played a leading role within ASEAN since the confederation of states was founded in 1967. For example, the ASEAN General Secretariat is based in Jakarta and the initiative to found the association goes back to the first president. At the global level, Jakarta sees itself as an advocate of the developing countries, whose voice it wants to be heard within the G20, for example .

The country has received increasing attention from Europe in recent years. Jakarta and the European Union signed a “Partnership and Cooperation Agreement” (PCA) in November 2009. An additional trade agreement is currently being negotiated: The negotiations were officially started on July 18, 2016 with the aim of facilitating market access and creating new markets, intensifying trade between Indonesia and the EU and expanding direct investments. The 9th round of the "Indonesia-EU Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA)" took place from December 2nd to 6th in Brussels.

Membership in international organizations

Indonesia was a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) for many years . But since its own oil reserves are almost exhausted, it became a net importer of oil. For this reason, among other things, the country announced its exit from OPEC on May 28, 2008.

Indonesia is a member of the United Nations . The country left the organization in 1965, but rejoined it in 1966. It is also a member of the International Monetary Fund and the World Trade Organization .


The Indonesian armed forces are called Tentara Nasional Indonesia (TNI) and consist of around 250,000 soldiers. They are subdivided into army , navy and air force . With around 196,000 soldiers, the army has by far the largest capacity. For a long time, the Indonesian national police were also part of the armed forces. In April 1999, the state police began to be outsourced; this process was formally concluded in July 2000. With 150,000 employees, the police force is much smaller than in most other states. In addition, there are around 120,000 members of the local police, so that the total number can be put at around 270,000 people.

Indonesia spent almost 0.8 percent of its economic output or 8.2 billion dollars on its armed forces in 2017. Indonesia ranked 94th out of 155 countries in the Global Militarization Index (GMI) in 2018 . According to the ranking by Global Firepower (2018), the country has the 15th strongest military capacity in the world and the 7th strongest in Asia.


Jakarta skyline
Agriculture in Indonesia
Daily oil consumption of some countries in Southeast Asia, liters per day / inhabitant


Indonesian provinces by gross domestic product per capita 2019 (US $)
  • over 12,001
  • 9,001 to 12,000
  • 6,001 to 9,000
  • 3,001 to 6,000
  • under 3,000
  • The economy of the next-eleven state Indonesia is based on the principle of the market economy , but is influenced in many areas by the government. Some large corporations are state-owned. In 1997/1998 an economic crisis hit various countries in East and Southeast Asia, which also hit Indonesia badly ( Asian crisis ). The currency lost 75% of its value and many businesses went bankrupt. After that, however, the Indonesian economy was able to stabilize and, with growth rates of 5 to 6% per year, is one of the fastest expanding in the world. The medium-term outlook is positive thanks to raw material deposits, a young population and a dynamic regional environment. In 2017, when adjusted for purchasing power, Indonesia was the eighth largest economic power in the world (16th place in nominal exchange rates). The currency is the Indonesian rupiah .

    The gross domestic product in 2017 was 3800 US dollars per capita (12,400 KKB), but a quarter of the population lives below the poverty line. Almost a third of the employees work in agriculture.

    The unemployment rate is reported at 5.6% in 2017, but many jobs are of an informal nature and underemployment is widespread. In 2016, 32% of the total workforce worked in agriculture, 47% in the service sector and 21% in industry. The total number of employees is estimated at 125 million for 2016, of which 38.2% women.

    Many multinational companies take advantage of Indonesia's natural wealth and have offices here. So z. B. the Daewoo Logistics group from South Korea large-scale plantings on which z. B. corn and palm oil are grown. The palm oil is processed directly in Indonesia.

    In the Global Competitiveness Index , which measures a country's competitiveness, Indonesia ranks 50th out of 140 countries (as of 2018). In 2020, Indonesia ranks 54th out of 180 countries in the Index for Economic Freedom .


    The gold and copper producer PT Freeport Indonesia , a subsidiary of Freeport-McMoRan Gold & Copper , is the largest taxpayer in the state. He operates the largest gold mine in the world in Western New Guinea . Another group operating in Indonesia is Newmont Mining . In January 2014, the government imposed a partial export ban on unprocessed ore in order to strengthen the manufacturing economy in the country. However, copper and iron ore had to be exempted from the ban under pressure from American companies that had temporarily stopped mining. Freeport is now reportedly ready to invest in smelting equipment.


    The main agricultural products for food production in Indonesia in 2008 were rice (60,279,897 t), cassava (20,834,241 t) (as food and for starch production), corn (15,860,299 t), cane sugar (2,266,812) and sweet potatoes (1,824.40 t). In addition, palm oil (10,869,365 t), tea (114,332 t) and rubber (450,526 t) were harvested in the same year . Indonesia is the third largest rice producer (as of 2016).

    Today Indonesia is the largest palm oil producer in the world, having only started growing it in 1911. Today oil palms are grown on 13 million hectares, which is three times the area of ​​Switzerland (for comparison: 1968: 120,000 ha, 2004: 5.5 million ha). It is viewed as critical that much of the harvested areas are obtained by clearing the tropical rainforest . The habitat is endangered by elephants and tigers, among others. However, the EU Agricultural Fuel Directive has led to further intensification of cultivation. In many parts of the country, v. a. in Sumatra, therefore, violent land conflicts have arisen because of the conversion of rainforest or settlement land into palm oil plantations. Wilmar , the world's largest palm oil company, is based in Indonesia. Among other things, he supplies Unilever, Nestlé and Procter & Gamble.


    Some export products are gold, copper, nickel ore , coal, wood products, agricultural products (palm oil, rice, peanuts, cocoa, coffee), textiles and minerals. With an annual 23 million tons (2002), Indonesia is the world's largest exporter of liquefied natural gas . The main customers are Japan and China.

    Most of the internationally traded tropical timber Merbau comes from western New Guinea, where 90% is illegally felled. In all other countries, the natural sites of Merbau have long been exhausted due to excessive felling.


    Bromo volcano on Java
    Komodo dragon

    Tourism is an important source of income for the country. Bali alone is visited by around four million tourists each year, mainly from Australia, the USA, Europe, Japan and China. However, tourism in Indonesia has suffered significant losses in recent years due to the bomb attacks on Bali ( 2002 and 2005) and repeated terror warnings, particularly from Australian authorities. In total, the country was visited by 9.9 million tourists in 2015, spending $ 10.8 billion. There are a total of eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Indonesia.

    Java attracts tourists with the world cultural heritage Borobudur (Buddhist) and Prambanan (Hindu) and the city ​​of Yogyakarta, which is known for batik . The touristic volcanoes Bromo , Tangkuban Perahu and Kawah Putih (both near Bandung), seaside resorts such as Pangandaran and others on the west coast as well as culturally interesting places such as Bandung and Cirebon and the Dieng Plateau , which is characterized by Hindu temples, attract tourists. The capital Jakarta , located on Java, is also a tourist destination despite its unmanageable size and its uncertain reputation.

    Sumatra has a lot to offer in terms of landscape and culture. In addition, the species-rich national parks are popular tourist destinations. The islands of Komodo , Rinca and Padar make up the Komodo National Park , where the Komodo dragon is native. North Sulawesi , in particular the area around Manado (especially Bunaken and the Lembeh Strait) and the Togian Islands are known as a diving paradise, while the Toraja highlands in southwest Sulawesi are primarily known for its cult of the dead.

    For Western New Guinea, known for its large number of ethnic groups , some of which are still very isolated and traditionally living , a special police permit ( Surat Jalan ) is required in order to be able to visit destinations in the interior. All places of the trip must be entered precisely. Travelers are required to use this form to report to the local police at their destination. Journalists have not received entry permits for Western New Guinea since 2003.


    The majority of the population does not have a bank account, while private companies suffer from restrictive lending. In total, all outstanding bank loans in 2016 totaled only 36% of gross domestic product (GDP); significantly less than in Vietnam and the Philippines (44% of GDP each) or in Thailand (92% of GDP). At the same time, the Indonesian banking sector is one of the most profitable in the world, which is also due to high profit margins in lending. While the Indonesian central bank lowered the key interest rate from a good 7% to below 5% in 2016, the banks were still charging around 13% interest for corporate loans, and by as much as 20% for microloans .

    The largest Indonesian banks in terms of lending are the majority state-owned Bank Mandiri and Bank Rakyat Indonesia (BRI), the latter a pioneer in microfinance and one of the world's largest providers of microcredit. The largest private bank is Bank Central Asia (BCA).

    Economic indicators

    The important economic indicators of gross domestic product, inflation, budget balance and foreign trade have developed as follows in recent years.

    Change in gross domestic product (GDP), real
    in% compared to the previous year
    year 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
    change 4.5 4.8 5.0 5.7 5.5 6.3 6.0 4.6 6.2 6.2 6.0 5.6 5.0 4.9 5.0 5.1
    Source: World Bank
    Development of GDP (nominal)
    absolute (in billion US $) per inhabitant (in US $)
    year 2015 2016 2017 year 2015 2016 2017
    GDP 861 932 1.016 GDP 3,336 3,570 3,864
    Source: World Bank
    Origin and use of GDP (2015)
    Origin of GDP (in%) Use of GDP (in%)
    Mining and industry 30.6 State consumption 9.8
    Trade and tourism 16.8 private consumption 57.1
    Agriculture 14.0 Gross fixed capital formation 33.2
    construction 10.7 External contribution 0.2
    Transport / communication 8.8 statistical difference 0.3
    miscellaneous 19.1
    Source: GTAI
    Development of the inflation rate Development of the budget balance
    in% compared to the previous year in% of GDP
    ("minus" means deficit in the national budget)
    year 2004 2005 2006 year 2003 2004 2005
    inflation rate 6.4 7.1 ~ 7 Budget balance −1.7 −1.1 −0.5
    Source: bfai ~ = estimated
    Development of foreign trade
    in billion US $ and its change compared to the previous year in%
    2014 2015 2016
    Billion US $ % yoy Billion US $ % yoy Billion US $ % yoy
    import 178.2 −4.5 142.7 −19.9 135.7 −4.9
    export 176.0 −3.6 116.5 −14.9 144.5 −3.9
    balance −2.5 +7.7 +8.8
    Source: GTAI
    Main trading partner of Indonesia in 2016
    Export (in percent) to Import (in percent) of
    China People's RepublicPeople's Republic of China People's Republic of China 11.6 China People's RepublicPeople's Republic of China People's Republic of China 22.7
    United StatesUnited States United States 11.2 SingaporeSingapore Singapore 10.7
    JapanJapan Japan 11.1 JapanJapan Japan 9.6
    SingaporeSingapore Singapore 7.8 ThailandThailand Thailand 6.4
    IndiaIndia India 7.0 United StatesUnited States United States 5.4
    MalaysiaMalaysia Malaysia 4.9 MalaysiaMalaysia Malaysia 5.3
    Korea SouthSouth Korea South Korea 4.8 Korea SouthSouth Korea South Korea 4.9
    other countries 44.3 other countries 41.6

    State budget

    The state budget included expenditures in 2016 of the equivalent of 151.4 billion US dollars , which were income equivalent to 128.7 billion US dollar against. This results in a budget deficit of 2.4% of GDP .
    The national debt in 2016 was $ 260.1 billion, or 27.9% of GDP. The country 's government bonds are rated BBB− by the rating agency
    Standard & Poor’s and the outlook is considered stable (as of 2018). The country's bonds are therefore considered worth investing.

    In 2006 the share of government expenditure (as a percentage of GDP) was in the following areas:

    The military runs a number of businesses and foundations, so its budget is actually larger than what is shown here.


    The economic development of Indonesia suffers from high transport costs, whose share of the gross domestic product is estimated at 24% to 27%. Because of these high transport costs, the price of a sack of cement in less industrialized, remote regions can be ten times the price in an industrial metropolitan area. The government is trying to counter this problem with a program to expand the maritime infrastructure, with which the transport costs are to be reduced to below 20% of the gross domestic product.

    Road traffic

    The total length of all roads in the country in 2011 was 496,607 km, of which 283,102 km are paved. Despite major investments in the road network, large parts of it are in poor condition. This is why many serious accidents occur in road traffic. In 2013, there were a total of 15.3 road deaths for every 100,000 inhabitants in Indonesia. For comparison: In Germany there were 4.3 deaths in the same year. A total of 38,000 people were killed in traffic. The number of automobiles is still relatively low at 68 per 1000 inhabitants. Popular means of transportation in the country are motorcycles and scooters.

    air traffic

    Due to its size and the poor infrastructure on the ground, large parts of Indonesia can only be reached by plane. After the liberalization of the market in 1999, there was therefore strong growth in air traffic throughout Indonesia, which, however, was at the expense of safety. After a series of accidents involving several airlines, the European Union therefore imposed a Europe-wide landing ban for all Indonesian airlines in 2007. In essence, this ban still exists today, except that Garuda Indonesia , Airfast Indonesia , Ekspres Transportasi Antarbenua , Indonesia Air Asia , Citilink , Lion Air and Batik Air are now exempt from this landing ban ( as of February 2018 ).

    The state-owned airline Garuda Indonesia was founded in 1950 with the support of KLM , which took over the aircraft from KNILM ( Koninklijke Nederlandsch-Indische Luchtvaart Maatschappij ) , which was dissolved in 1947 .

    Maritime transport

    Passenger ferries operated by the state-owned ferry company Pelni operate between the larger Indonesian islands . Among other things, ferries manufactured at the German Meyer Werft (series 1000 , 2000 and 3000 ) or ferries designed there ( Meyer type 500 series 500 ) are used here.


    Like most other information media in Indonesia, the Internet is also widely used jointly. Just as a newspaper is read by an average of six people, Internet access, computers or places in Internet cafés are shared. Compared to other Southeast Asian countries, the number of users is relatively small compared to the population. Most users use the Internet in Warnets (Internet cafes), only 1.1 percent have their own computer. In 2019, 48 percent of Indonesia's residents used the internet .

    More important than the sheer number of users, however, is their geographical distribution. Indonesia's immense geographical expansion has always brought political and infrastructural problems with it. Reinforced by the aggressive Java-centrist development policy of the New Order, the outer islands (i.e. everything outside of Java and Bali, which are provided with the appropriate infrastructure mainly due to their tourist potential) are lagging behind massively in terms of schools, roads, telephone lines, etc. The geographical distribution of internet cafes and internet users is no exception. While there is one internet café for every 20,000 people in the capital Jakarta, there is one internet café for every million people in Sumatra, West Nusatenggara (NTB), Sulawesi and Maluku. Telephone density, an elementary requirement for private Internet use, shows a similar picture. On average, there are three phones for every 100 people. If one takes the centering on the islands of Java and Bali into account, the situation for NTB and provinces further east is not yet modern enough. On the other hand, access is also linked to a form of technical knowledge that not everyone is familiar with.


    Indonesian culture (music, literature, painting) was first shaped by Buddhism in the 9th and 10th centuries, and increasingly by Hinduism from the 13th century. Another highly developed art is batik , which has been indigenous to Indonesia for centuries. In elaborate technology, rich patterns with flowers and bird motifs, spirals and imaginative structures are developed. Today the batik is an export product from Indonesia.

    Calendar, holidays

    The Pawukon calendar is particularly widespread in Java and Bali .

    Food culture

    Due to the large number of people in Indonesia, there are great differences between the cultures of the individual regions. Rice is a staple food in most regions of Indonesia and is eaten up to three times a day. There rice terraces run through the country. Many myths tell that rice is a godsend. In the east, the Melanesian root-based culture extends into Indonesia. In the 17th century, the Portuguese introduced manioc to the region from America. Initially on the Moluccas , later manioc also came to Java. The colonial powers promoted the cultivation to counter famine.



    The national anthem Indonesia Raya was composed by Wage Rudolf Soepratman . The classical Indonesian orchestra is called gamelan .


    The Javanese word for any kind of dramatic staging with puppets or human actors is wayang . The most famous is the shadow play wayang kulit . A game with round plastic stick puppets is wayang golek and flat wooden puppets are called wayang klitik . The very old picture role drama wayang beber has almost disappeared.


    Indonesian feature film production
    year number
    1975 73
    1985 62
    1995 30th
    2005 50
    2012 86

    See also

    Portal: Indonesia  - Overview of Wikipedia content on the topic of Indonesia


    • Genia Findeisen: Women in Indonesia - Gender Equality through Democratization? An analysis of the democratization process from a women's perspective . Johannes Herrmann Verlag, Wettenberg 2008. ISBN 978-3-937983-11-0
    • Martin Jankowski : Reading Indonesia - Notes on Literature and Society. Essays and Conversations . Regiospectra Verlag, Berlin 2014, ISBN 978-3-940132-66-6
    • Anett Keller: Indonesia 1965ff. The presence of mass murder. A political reader. Regiospectra Verlag, Berlin 2015, ISBN 978-3-940132-68-0
    • Matti Justus Schindehütte: Civil religion as a responsibility of society - religion as a political factor within the development of the Pancasila of Indonesia. Abera, Hamburg 2006. ISBN 978-3-934376-80-9
    • Fritz Schulze: Brief history of Indonesia. From the island kingdoms to the modern state . CH Beck, Munich 2015, ISBN 978-3-406-68152-3 .
    • Franz Magnis-Suseno : Garuda on the rise. Modern Indonesia . Dietz, Bonn 2015, ISBN 978-3-8012-0464-8

    Web links

    Wiktionary: Indonesia  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations
    Commons : Indonesia  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files
    Wikivoyage: Indonesia  Travel Guide

    Individual evidence

    1. population, total. In: World Economic Outlook Database. World Bank , 2020, accessed February 10, 2021 .
    2. Population growth (annual%). In: World Economic Outlook Database. World Bank , 2020, accessed February 10, 2021 .
    3. World Economic Outlook Database October 2020. In: World Economic Outlook Database. International Monetary Fund , 2020, accessed May 2, 2021 .
    4. Table: Human Development Index and its components . In: United Nations Development Program (ed.): Human Development Report 2020 . United Nations Development Program, New York 2020, ISBN 978-92-1126442-5 , pp. 344 (English, [PDF]).
    5. Russell Jones: Earl, Logan and "Indonesia" . In: Archipel , Vol. 6 (1973), pp. 93-118, here pp. 98-99 and 104-108.
    6. Dierke World Atlas (German), Bos Atlas (Dutch).
    7. Protection of the coral triangle .
    8. The Last Stand of the Orangutan. State of Emergency: Illegal Logging, Fire and Palm Oil in Indonesia's National Parks. UNEP, UNESCO, February 2007, p. 36 ( Memento from June 11, 2007 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF file; 20.2 MB).
    9. ↑ The Conference of the Parties to the Climate Change focuses on the protection of forests ( Memento of October 12, 2008 in the Internet Archive ) Information from the BMELV, accessed on October 1, 2015.
    10. Global Forest Ressources Assessment 2005. FAO Forestry Paper 147. ISBN 92-5-105481-9 , p. 21.
    11. Causes of Destruction. Retrieved September 14, 2020 .
    12. ^ Forest fires result from government failure in Indonesia., October 15, 2006 .
    13. Indonesia's Forest Fires: Monsoon Rain, El Niño, and the Struggle of the Government , December 2, 2015
    14. 43,000 hectares burned down: Devastating forest fires are also raging in Indonesia, August 26, 2019
    16. WWF Germany : Forests in Flames. Forest fire study 2012, online: [1] (pdf)
    17. The Jakarta Post, April 1, 2009 .
    18. a b World Population Prospects - Population Division - United Nations. Retrieved July 13, 2017 .
    19. a b Meyer's Large Country Lexicon . Meyers Lexikonverlag, Mannheim 2004. , page 240.
    20. Manuel Schmitz: Ethnic Conflicts in Indonesia and Suharto's Integration Policy. Institute for Asian Studies: Hamburg 2003, ISBN 3-88910-285-9 , p. 41.
    21. ^ A b East Asia / Southeast Asia: Indonesia. In: The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency, May 20, 2020, accessed May 25, 2020 .
    22. ^ Georg Evers: Country reports - Religious freedom: Indonesia . Internationales Katholisches Missionswerk e. V., Aachen, 2013, ISSN  2193-4339 . P. 6.
    23. Bettina David: German reporting on Indonesia: Distorted perception. In: October 29, 2019. Retrieved November 9, 2019 .
    24. 2010 Census: Population by Region and Religion . Statistics Indonesia. May 15, 2010. Retrieved November 20, 2011.
    25. ^ International Crisis Group : Resources and Conflict in Papua. Brussel 2002 PDF 737 kB ( Memento of August 8, 2009 in the Internet Archive ), p. 8.
    26. Indonesia. Retrieved June 10, 2018 (UK English).
    27. Indonesia is becoming a growth market . In: German Health News . ( [accessed June 10, 2018]).
    28. Germany Trade and Invest GmbH: GTAI - Search. Retrieved June 10, 2018 .
    29. World Population Prospects - Population Division - United Nations. Retrieved July 16, 2017 .
    30. Indonesia - Life Expectancy Through 2018. Retrieved December 13, 2020 .
    31. Prevalence of undernourishment (% of population) | Data. Retrieved March 10, 2018 (American English).
    32. Human Development Data (1990-2015) | Human Development Reports. Accessed August 2, 2018 .
    33. Indonesia. Amnesty International
    34. ^ Re-education for Indonesian punks. Piercings out, hair down and in the lake., December 14, 2011.
    35. Indonesia Shari'ah official is flogged for sex outside of marriage. In: November 1, 2019, accessed November 9, 2019 .
    36. Indonesian man jailed for two-and-a-half years for writing 'God doesn't exist' on his Facebook page
    37. Indonesians convicted of Facebook confession ( memento of March 18, 2014 in the Internet Archive ); Document - Indonesia: Atheist imprisonment a setback for freedom of expression. Amnesty International (accessed June 15, 2012)
    38. ^ Jad Adams: Women and the Vote. A world history. Oxford University Press, Oxford 2014, ISBN 978-0-19-870684-7 , page 411.
    39. June Hannam, Mitzi Auchterlonie, Katherine Holden: International Encyclopedia of Women's Suffrage. ABC-Clio, Santa Barbara, Denver, Oxford 2000, ISBN 1-57607-064-6 , p. 140.
    40. ^ Mart Martin: The Almanac of Women and Minorities in World Politics. Westview Press Boulder, Colorado, 2000, p. 181.
    41. Christoph Driessen: History of the Netherlands. From sea power to trend land. Regensburg 2016, p. 233.
    42. ^ Susan Blackburn: Women's Suffrage and Democracy in Indonesia. In: Louise Edwards, Mina Roces (Ed.): Women's Suffrage in Asia. Routledge Shorton New York, 2004, pp. 79-1059, p. 80.
    43. ^ A b Susan Blackburn: Women's Suffrage and democracy in Indonesia. In: Louise Edwards, Mina Roces (Ed.): Women's Suffrage in Asia. Routledge Shorton New York, 2004, pp. 79-1059, p. 92.
    44. a b June Hannam, Mitzi Auchterlonie, Katherine Holden: International Encyclopedia of Women's Suffrage. ABC-Clio, Santa Barbara, Denver, Oxford 2000, ISBN 1-57607-064-6 , p. 140.
    45. According to another source, there were female MPs for the first time in July 1971, namely 33 women: Mart Martin: The Almanac of Women and Minorities in World Politics. Westview Press Boulder, Colorado, 2000, p. 183.
    46. The Jakarta Globe: House Agrees on Creation of Indonesia's 34th Province: 'North Kalimantan' , October 22, 2012 ( Memento of January 4, 2014 in the Internet Archive ).
    47. ^ Vadim Rossman: Capital Cities: Varieties and Patterns of Development and Relocation. Routledge, Abingdon 2017, ISBN 978-1-138-83777-5 , pp. 122f.
    48. Verena Kern: Land under. In: Klimareporter. November 2, 2019, accessed November 5, 2019 .
    49. See country page "Indonesia" of the Federal Foreign Office
    50. ^ Fragile States Index: Global Data. Fund for Peace , 2020, accessed February 10, 2021 .
    51. ^ The Economist Intelligence Unit's Democracy Index. The Economist Intelligence Unit, accessed February 10, 2021 .
    52. ^ Countries and Territories. Freedom House , 2020, accessed February 10, 2021 .
    53. 2021 World Press Freedom Index. Reporters Without Borders , 2021, accessed May 2, 2021 .
    54. ^ Transparency International (Ed.): Corruption Perceptions Index . Transparency International, Berlin 2021, ISBN 978-3-96076-157-0 (English, [PDF]).
    55. Interview with the Ambassador of Indonesia HE Arif Havas Oegroseno: “We want to be seen as a country that is ready to take on an important role in the global value chain. We are open to business! ” Accessed July 12, 2020 .
    56. Oil production has fallen sharply - Indonesia wants to leave Opec ( Memento from August 31, 2008 in the Internet Archive ). Retrieved October 3, 2015.
    57. ^ The World Almanac and Book of Facts 2010 of the New York Times, p. 747, ISBN 978-1-60057-123-7 .
    58. Home | SIPRI. Retrieved July 10, 2017 .
    59. GLOBAL MILITARIZATION INDEX 2018. Max M. Mutschler, Marius Bales \ BICC, accessed on February 10, 2019 .
    60. Countries Ranked by Military Strength (2018) Globalfirepower, accessed February 10, 2019.
    61. Southeast Asia's future market: Indonesia, the engine of growth, is back on its feet. Retrieved June 17, 2017 .
    62. a b World Economic Outlook Database April 2017. Retrieved June 17, 2017 (American English).
    63. ^ CIA World Factbook .
    64. ^ The World Factbook - Central Intelligence Agency. Retrieved August 6, 2018 .
    65. homepage Daewoo Logistcs ( Memento of 18 December 2008 at the Internet Archive ).
    66. Country Rankings: World & Global Economy Rankings on Economic Freedom. Retrieved December 4, 2017 .
    67. Indonesia wants more domestic value added. Neue Zürcher Zeitung, January 22, 2015, online: [2]
    68. Statistical tables for Indonesia, 3rd forecast of harvest quantities 2008 .
    69. Statistical Tables Indonesia, Harvest Quantities 2006 .
    70. FAOSTAT. Retrieved August 17, 2018 .
    71. Eco-News: Palm Oil Warning for Indonesia of November 8, 2007, as of November 29, 2008 .
    72. Vistaverde News December 11, 2002, viewed November 29, 2008 .
    73. Kathrin Hartmann: Palm Oil from Indonesia: The Dirty Business of Producers. In: Spiegel Online . March 7, 2015, accessed April 12, 2020 .
    74. Telapak Eia: Stemming the Tide: Halting The Regional Trade in Stolen Timber in Asia. November 2005 PDF ( Memento from September 27, 2007 in the Internet Archive ).
    75. UNWTO 2017. World Tourism Organization, accessed August 14, 2018 .
    76. a b Roland Rohde: Banks in Indonesia expect strong increases in sales. In: Germany Trade & Invest, March 15, 2017, accessed on March 15, 2017 .
    77. GDP growth (annual%) | Data. Retrieved July 13, 2017 (American English).
    78. GDP per capita (current US $) | Data. Retrieved July 13, 2017 (American English).
    79. a b c Germany Trade and Invest GmbH: GTAI - economic data compact. Retrieved July 25, 2017 .
    80. Development of the inflation rate of Indonesia: gtai economic data compact .
    81. a b c d The World Factbook .
    82. ^ Report for Selected Countries and Subjects. Retrieved June 17, 2017 (American English).
    83. Sovereigns Ratings List 2019. Accessed January 6, 2019 .
    84. ^ The Fischer World Almanac 2010: Figures Data Facts, Fischer, Frankfurt, September 8, 2009, ISBN 978-3-596-72910-4 .
    85. Roland Rohde: Maritime Autobahn in Indonesia should reduce logistics costs. In: Germany Trade & Invest, March 3, 2017, accessed on March 7, 2017 .
    86. Global status report on road safety 2015. Retrieved March 30, 2018 (British English).
    87. a b Indonesia's aviation in turbulence. Hectic reactions to the EU landing ban. In: July 5, 2007, accessed March 7, 2017 .
    88. USA warn against Indonesian airlines. In: Spiegel Online. April 17, 2007, accessed March 7, 2017 .
    89. List of airlines that are prohibited from operating in the EU. (PDF) November 30, 2017, p. 6 , accessed on February 15, 2018 (English).
    90. ^ Hill (2003): Plotting Public Participation on Indonesia's Internet. South East Asia Research 11, 3rd p. 298.
    91. ^ Hill (2003): Plotting Public Participation on Indonesia's Internet. South East Asia Research 11, 3rd p. 303.
    92. ^ Individuals using the Internet (% of population). World Bank , accessed May 2, 2021 .
    93. ^ Low, Pit Chen 2003: The Media in a Society in Transition. A Case Study of Indonesia. The Fletcher School (Tufts University). MASTER OF ARTS THESIS, p. 51.
    94. ^ Hill (2003): Plotting Public Participation on Indonesia's Internet. South East Asia Research 11, 3rd p. 299.
    95. Mary Karasch: manioc , in Kenneth F. Kiple and Kriemhild Coneè Ornelas: Cambridge World History of Food. Cambridge 2000, p. 185.
    96. World Film Production Report (excerpt) ( Memento from August 8, 2007 in the Internet Archive ), Screen Digest, June 2006, pp. 205–207, accessed on October 3, 2015.
    97. UIS Statistics. Accessed December 30, 2018 .

    Coordinates: 2 °  S , 118 °  E