Indonesia pledges 40 billion USD to modernise Jakarta hinh anh 1A view of Jakarta city (Photo:

Hanoi (VNA) - The Indonesian Government pledges to disburse 40 billion USD to save the slowly sinking city in the next decade, said Minister of National Development Planning Bambang Brodjonegoro.

The current Indonesian capital will undergo a 571 trillion rupiah (40.18 billion USD) urban regeneration in the next 10 years, more than the 33 billion USD expected cost to build a new capital city on Borneo island, Brodjonegoro told Reuters in an interview.

"Jakarta is the centre of everything in Indonesia. What we are moving out of is the centre of administration, but finance (centres), businesses and trades will stay," Brodjonegoro said.

Jakarta is one of the world's most densely populated cities, home to more than 10 million people and three times that number when counting those who live in surrounding towns.

Brodjonegoro said the relocation decision was taken because the government knew the population concentration in Jakarta has to be reduced. The government expects to begin moving to the new capital city in the East Kalimantan province in 2024.

Only 60 percent of the city has pipe water infrastructure, forcing millions of people and businesses to dig wells to use up groundwater, hurting the environment, Brodjonegoro said.

The over extraction makes Jakarta prone to floods and sinking due to subsidence. Rising sea levels aggravated the sinking with some part of the city dropping as much as 11 inches a year, making Jakarta the fastest sinking city of its size globally.

At the current sinking rate, 95 percent of Jakarta will be underwater by 2050, warned Heri Andreas, a geodesist who does research on subsidence for the Bandung Institute of Technology.

Part of the new project submitted by the city government is to extend water pipes to cover all of Jakarta so that people don't rely on groundwater, Brodjonegoro said.

The government will also build a new sewage system, he said, adding that the biggest chunk of the spending would be for mass transportation.

Jakarta suffers from some of world's worst traffic jams. The congestion, the current dry season, industrial pollution and the city's reliance on coal power plants had put Jakarta among the world's most polluted cities as well.-VNA