Hey Mom, where are we?

Kompas – October 30, 2019

Kid: Hey Mom, where are we?

Document being held by women reads “Perpres Number 63/2019”

On September 30 President Joko Widodo passed a presidential regulation (Perpres) on the use of the Indonesian language which makes it mandatory for government officials to speak in Bahasa Indonesia when delivering formal speeches domestically or abroad.

It also requires that Indonesian be mandatory for the naming of buildings, apartments, offices and commercial centers that are owned by Indonesian citizens or an Indonesian legal body, and that Indonesian-owned products and brands must also be named using Indonesian.

Although it provides exceptions for names which have historical, cultural and religious value, it has left many wondering how it will affect the widespread use of English words in advertising and products and weather it will mean that places and business that use English words in their names like Senayan City or Grand Indonesia will also have to change their names.

Others point out that this will just become yet another unmanageable and unenforceable regulation and flies in the face of Widodo’s own instructions to ministers and regional heads to stop issuing new rules that make it harder to do business.