Indonesia cleans up corruption at ports

Indonesia’s state-owned port operator Pelindo wants to weed out criminal activities and corruption. Arif Suhartono, president director, has given clear indication that he has zero tolerance and he intends to provide a clean environment, good services and to reduce ships’ turnaround time at the port. He hopes to ultimately improve competitiveness by cutting logistics cost because Indonesia has much higher logistics costs than neighboring countries. 

Criminal activities in the port involve illegal levies, extortion, bribes, and corruption. Those that are willing to pay a bribe, for example, will have their goods and cargoes processed much quicker whereas those who do not pay will face delays. Suhartono recognized that to root out corruption, he has to first eliminate inefficiencies in the port ecosystem. In this regard, he has the full support of Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, coordinating minister for maritime and investment affairs.

Luhut said he has given the full weight of his office for Pelindo to increase supervision and enforcement against port criminal activities across 94 ports located in 32 provinces. He also asked Pelindo to work closely with the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK). 

On October 31, the CMA CGM Alexander Von Humbolt which came from the U.S., docked at the Jakarta International Container Terminal (JICT), Tanjung Priok, North Jakarta. Budi Karya Sumadi, minister of transportation, said this is a testament to Indonesia’s status as a regional maritime hub and that Pelindo’s anti-corruption efforts paid off.

Photo credit: iStock/danikancil. Terminal 2 of Tanjung Priok International Port .

Angiola Harry

Angiola Harry

Angiola is a Jakarta-based award-winning journalist, and a novel and book author. He is also an active microstock photography contributor at Adobe Stock and Shutterstock.

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