East Bali’s problem port development, Tanah Ampo in Karangasem, would be one of the potential infrastructure developments to benefit from moves in the national legislature to introduce compulsory land acquisition.
A law being drafted would introduce “eminent domain,” under which the national government would have power to acquire private land and compensate the owner at a set value.
Coordinating Minister for the Economy Hatta Rajasa said a simpler way of acquiring private land needed for public purposes was essential for economic development.
Under present law the government cannot confiscate land without the consent of the owner. Hatta said: “We all know land acquisition is quite complicated in this country. The development of about 82 sections of toll roads (in Java) has been hampered by problems.”
At present major projects sometimes use “land brokers” to secure title on land required for development and ask few questions about the methods used to reach agreement.