The Jakarta Post, Wed, 08/19/2009
Back in 1991, the world “archipelago” was really famous. Almost everybody knew that the motto for Visit Indonesia Year was “let’s go archipelago!” Being a very young kid with limited knowledge of English, the word “archipelago” caught my attention.
The word sounded unusual and that made it easy to remember. But it wasn’t until almost 15 years later that I came close to understanding the meaning of the word “archipelago”.
Yes, Indonesia is an archipelago, a nation state made up of thousands of islands. It is the largest archipelagic state in the world, stretching from approximately 95° E to 141° E longitude and from 6° N to 11° S latitude, with a coastline approximately 81,000 kilometers long.
Given this vast ocean territory, it is important to look at whether or not Indonesia has firmly secured its sovereign rights to its maritime areas and if these rights are being optimally utilized for the prosperity of its people.
Now that Indonesia is 64 years old, it’s a good time to look forward at the steps that should be taken to secure maritime rights in the future.