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Research Report

Decentralisation of Policies Affecting Forests and Estate Crops in Kotawaringin Timur District, Central Kalimantan

Anne Casson
Copyright Date: Jan. 1, 2001
Pages: 54
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. v-viii)
    Christopher Barr and Ida Aju Pradnja Resosudarmo
  2. (pp. 1-8)

    Kotawaringin Timur is the largest district (kabupaten) in Central Kalimantan (Map 1). It has a land area of 50,600 square kilometres (km²)—that is, 31 percent of the total land area of Central Kalimantan province, or 9 percent of the total land area of Kalimantan (or Indonesian Borneo) (BAPPEDA and BPS 1998). The district consists of 24 subdistricts (kecamatan) and two assistant regions (wilayah pembantu) attached to the district head, or Bupati. Because Kotawaringin Timur is so large, these two assistant regions-Seruyan and Katinigan—exist to help manage the district’s resources, monitor activities and collect data. The three main administrative...

  3. (pp. 9-17)

    In late 1999, the Central Kalimantan provincial government revealed plans to divide Kotawaringin Timur into three separate districts. This division would establish two new districts within the administrative boundaries of Kotawaringin Timur. The two new districts would originate from the two assistant administrative regions of Katingan and Seruyan, while the third district would have Sampit as its administrative center, making it the ‘induk’ or ‘mother’ district. While the decision to divide Kotawaringin Timur into three districts has been a long awaited consequence of the new decentralisation laws, there have been few moves to divide up the region. In 2000, the...

  4. (pp. 18-20)

    Two national parks fall within Kotawaringin Timur—Tanjung Puting National Park and Bukit Raya National Park; however, both of these parks are managed by offices in other districts as they both cross provincial administrative borders. Tanjung Puting National Park is managed by the Natural Resource Conservation Office (Balai Konservasi Sumber Daya Alam, or BKSDA) in Kotawaringin Barat district and Bukit Raya is managed by the Natural Resource Conservation Office in West Kalimantan province.

    Located in the south of Kotawaringin Timur, Tanjung Puting National Park occupies an alluvial peninsula jutting out in the Java Sea11. Covering an area of 415,000 hectares,...

  5. (pp. 21-27)

    As previously mentioned, Kotawaringin Timur is in a process of transition from an economy based on the timber industry to an economy structured around oil palm cultivation. Since the mid-1990s, oil palm area has experienced rapid growth. However, in the current era of economic and political change, oil palm development has slowed by 68 percent, from 29,492 hectares in 1996-97 to 9,568 hectares in 1998-99 (Figure 3). For the year 1999-2000, the government was only expecting 4,036 hectares of oil palm to be planted by private estates in the region. Plans for an ‘upland ecological corridor development’ that aimed to...

  6. (pp. 28-29)

    When fieldwork was undertaken for this study in 2000, it appeared that the new decentralisation laws were allowing the Kotawaringin Timur government to seise control over the district’s natural resource base and to increase local revenue from the natural resources sector alone. It is estimated that the Kotawaringin Timur government would generate approximately Rp 62 billion, or roughly US$6.2 million, in revenue from natural resources alone in 2000. While most of this revenue came from illegal logging, legal logging and mining revenues, the district government was hopeful that the oil palm sector would generate district income in the near future....

  7. (pp. 29-29)

    In February 2001, violent riots broke out in the capital of Kotawaringin Timur—Sampit. The conflict is alleged to have erupted after a mob attacked a migrant settlement area in the early hours of the morning, leaving eight people dead and several in critical condition (Jakarta Post 2001a). Shortly after this incident, a number of Madurese migrants are alleged to have retaliated, sparking off widespread ethnic violence in the district. Official reports now claim that up to 250 lives have been lost to the violence. Some are claiming that the death toll is likely to reach 400 (Jakarta Post 2001d)....