President Jokowi shuts tap on alcoholic production investment amid pressure from religious groups

Indonesian President Joko Widodo. Photo: Twitter/@jokowi
Indonesian President Joko Widodo. Photo: Twitter/@jokowi

President Joko Widodo has revoked a Presidential Regulation (Perpres) putting alcoholic production in the country’s positive investments list, following outcry from religious groups in the Muslim majority country.

As part of the 2020 Job Creation Law, Jokowi signed Perpres no. 10/2021 on Feb. 2, 2021 opening up the local alcohol industry, specifically those in Bali, Papua, East Nusa Tenggara (NTT), and Sulawesi, to domestic and foreign investment. The industry was previously a closed business sector.

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But Indonesia’s largest and most influential Islamic groups lambasted the Perpres, as they rejected the idea of alcohol tarnishing Indonesia’s image in the Islamic world.

“After receiving feedback from ulemas, MUI (the Indonesian Ulema Council), NU (Nahdlatul Ulama), Muhammadiyah, and other mass organizations and other religious figures, I announce that the opening up of new investments to the alcoholic beverages industry has been rescinded,” Jokowi said in a press conference today.

NU, the largest Islamic organization in the world, previously argued that Jokowi’s Perpres would eventually lead towards the widespread normalization of alcoholic drinks in Indonesia, which could corrupt the youth.

Alcohol consumption is legal for adults over 21. Only the province of Aceh, which enforces Islamic sharia law, bans alcohol entirely.

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CITY: JAKARTACATEGORY: NEWSSUB-CATEGORIES: BUSINESS, POLITICS, RELIGIONTAGS:

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