Indonesian military personnel (Source: Antara)
Jakarta (VNA) – Indonesia’s defence budget in 2017 is likely to be much lower than proposed by the government despite plans to establish military bases in Natuna, Riau Islands, Defence Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu said.

According to the minister, under a draft budget for 2017, the ministry will be allocated 104.58 trillion Rp (8.3 billion USD), just half of the almost 200 trillion Rp suggested by the government.

He said modernizing weaponry systems and the construction of the military bases in Riau Islands are the two focus of the defence budget next year.

The government has finalised plans to build military bases in Natuna for the Air Force, the Navy and the Army, the minister said, adding that the strategic bases located in the archipelago’s outermost regions will be completed within three years.

The House of Representative's Commission I, which oversees defense and foreign affairs, previously rejected the government's request to raise defense spending to 1.5 percent of the overall state budget (approximately 180-200 trillion Rp).-VNA