Jakarta, Indonesia — Indonesia’s government is putting billions of dollars toward a $7 billion initiative to spur the creation of local businesses, but its plans have raised questions about its impact on workers.
The plan to build two Ujamas cooperative enterprises, dubbed ujjamas co-ops, is set to take more than a decade to complete.
It will be financed by a 2.5 trillion rupiah ($1.2 trillion) government-backed loan, as well as private capital from private companies.
The money is being earmarked for construction of new homes, schools and other infrastructure projects in Ujama, the capital of Aceh province, and surrounding provinces, where thousands of migrants arrive annually for economic and cultural opportunities.
“Ujama is the heart of Acehs economic development.
It’s a huge city with about 30 million residents and about 1 million foreign workers, so it’s very important for us to be able to provide a boost to the local economy and local businesses,” says Yohannes Amara, the director general of the Ujams co-op economy.
The project will create a business incubator in Uma, a former mining town that is now home to the country’s first Ujaws co-operative.
Ujas co-operatives will also have the potential to create hundreds of jobs and establish an array of new industries in Aceh, including IT, manufacturing, food processing and agriculture.
Ujamas is one of several projects underway to boost Aceh’s economy and attract foreign investment.
The government has also been promoting tourism in the country.
But critics say the projects have the unintended consequence of destroying the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of Acehis people, including farmers, who have long complained about the economic hardship their land and livelihoods have suffered.
“This is a real problem that we face.
There are hundreds of thousand people who have lost their land.
The country is in dire need of investment and jobs,” said Amara.
The new Ujanascoop ventures will create jobs, boost local industries and create thousands of jobs in Acehs rural areas.
The Ujoms co-operation project will provide incentives for foreign investors to invest in the new ventures, providing the funds needed to create jobs.
But the initiative also has the potential of reducing Acehs rural economy and jeopardizing Acehans livelihoods, according to local economists.
The government said it would use the new investments to build schools, hospitals and other projects.
But critics say foreign investors will take advantage of Acehas weak labor laws to undercut the local workers and undercut the projects.
“There are some people who are saying this is a money-making scheme, but it will have negative consequences for Aceh and the workers,” said Ali Bala, the head of the Aceh-based Aceh Farmers Federation.
The Aceh farmers union said the UJamas cooperative ventures will be run by Indonesian nationals and will benefit only foreign investors.
They have also raised concerns that foreign investors may use the funds to buy up farmland that would otherwise be used for farming.
“It’s very problematic because there are about 20,000 farms in Acehas, and foreign investors have the right to buy land, but Aceh is one the poorest provinces in the world.
The Aceh government needs to provide incentives to foreign investors so they can buy land,” said Naimu Dhamani, a farmer in Acehd.
In Aceh Province, where the Acehs co-optative projects will be built, the government has promised that Ujoses co-owners will receive a 20% share of the revenue generated from the project.
However, the state-owned Agence Nationale des Etats-Unis de la Recherche Scientifique (ANES) said it will not be able hold the owners liable if the money they receive is not spent on their land or the projects are not completed.
“In Acehs, there is a land grabbing going on, where foreign companies have bought land, and they then use the land to build their own businesses.
There’s no accountability,” said ANES president and farmworker leader Anwar Taha.
Taha also pointed to a recent survey that found the majority of Acehaans support the new cooperative ventures.
However a recent poll found that 85% of Acehatas residents do not support the idea.
“The fact that it’s being promoted with so much support by the government is a problem,” said Dhamanani.
According to Amara’s office, the plan will help boost local economies, with a number of local enterprises expected to employ more than 100,000 people in Acehlas new cooperatives, which will create 500 jobs and produce 3,000 to 4,000 new jobs.
The money will be used to pay for new housing, infrastructure and other services in Ace