Indonesia must improve its information technology infrastructure if it wants to increase its competitiveness and achieve its goal of being among the world’s 10 biggest economies by 2025, an official said on Monday.
“The government has to make use of its budget for research and development” of IT infrastructure, said Gita Wirjawan, the chairman of the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM).
Indonesia’s gross domestic product, estimated at $720 billion this year, will grow to between $6 trillion and $7 trillion by 2030, he said.
Gita said the country needs to allocate at least 10 percent of $12 trillion in total investment from now until 2030 for IT infrastructure. As it stands, the government only allocates 0.07 percent of GDP to information technology and research and development across all sectors.
According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report for 2010-2011, Indonesia is ranked 44th of 139 countries, a jump of 10 places since 2005. However, the WEF report suggested there was still room for improvement in infrastructure, health and technology.
The government last month launched an economic master plan to become one of the top 10 economies in the world by 2025.
According to Gita, who spoke on Monday at the Modernisator Speakers’ Forum, titled “National Competitiveness Towards Indonesia 2025,” the nation’s large young population is a bonus. This demographic profile could be maintained for the next 15 years, he said.
“Entrepreneurship is going to be the driver of our competitiveness in the future,” Gita said. Although the country had no shortage of entrepreneurs, Gita said, many lack education and protection from risk in their businesses.
Modernisator is a think tank founded by Dino Patti Djalal, now the Indonesian ambassador to the United States, along with a group of young Indonesian achievers from various sectors.