Dual Citizenship: Indonesia's Path to Global Competitiveness

Dual Citizenship: Indonesia's Path to Global Competitiveness


Unlocking Indonesia's Potential: Dual Citizenship as a Pathway to Prosperity

Embracing Dual Citizenship: A Strategic Move for Indonesia's Future

Indonesia, the largest economy in Southeast Asia, has long grappled with the challenge of brain drain - the exodus of its highly skilled professionals and academics to seek better opportunities abroad. This phenomenon has been exacerbated by the country's current citizenship laws, which do not allow for dual citizenship. However, a recent announcement by the Indonesian government to introduce dual citizenship has the potential to be a game-changer, unlocking the nation's true potential and driving economic innovation.

Veronica Cotdemiey, CEO of Citizenship Invest, a Dubai-based company specializing in citizenship and residency through investment, welcomed this initiative, stating that "the introduction of a dual citizenship system would be the beginning of a positive transformation for Indonesia." Not only does this make Indonesia an attractive destination for international talent, but it also allows Indonesians abroad to maintain emotional bonds and contribute to their homeland without sacrificing their global mobility.

Addressing the Brain Drain Challenge

According to the Directorate General of Immigration, nearly 4,000 Indonesians changed their nationality to Singapore between 2019 and 2022. This figure is a reflection of a broader trend, where Indonesia has been losing many of its high-quality human resources to developed countries, a phenomenon known as brain drain.

"The departure of high-quality human resources is very unfortunate, especially because Indonesia is a developing country with great growth potential," said Veronica. The World Bank estimates that Indonesia's GDP can increase even more rapidly if the country can effectively retain and attract global talent.

Tapping into the Power of the Diaspora

By legalizing dual citizenship, Indonesia can tap into the vast networks and expertise of its diaspora, who are working in crucial sectors such as technology, engineering, and finance. These individuals can contribute to the country's economic development and technological advancement, helping to drive Indonesia's ambition to become a developed nation by 2045.


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"Dual citizenship can be a new breakthrough for Indonesia, especially in utilizing its global network and expertise," Cotdemiey added. "This policy offers a more inclusive national development framework, which embraces and engages diverse capabilities of communities, both from within and outside the country."

The Economic Implications of Dual Citizenship

The economic impact of dual citizenship extends beyond the individual scale. Licensing dual citizenship could boost Indonesia's attractiveness as a global investment destination. The Indonesian diaspora living abroad can help to increase foreign direct investment, as they will be more inclined to invest in their home country if they can maintain legal ties.

"The existence of dual citizenship allows Indonesian expatriates to maintain their origins and connect Indonesia with the global market. Investment and expertise from the diaspora will play an important role in shaping a strong and rapidly growing economic landscape for Indonesians," Cotdemiey concluded.

Lessons from Other Countries

The benefits of dual citizenship have been felt by many other countries, including India, which has an Overseas Citizenship scheme. This policy allows the Indian diaspora to contribute back to the country through investment, philanthropic activities, and knowledge transfer, without the need to renounce their new citizenship. The policy has also helped to improve economic relations and foster bilateral relations optimally.

Embracing the Global Landscape

The emergence of the dual citizenship discourse in Indonesia has been a long time coming. The incident in 2016, where President Joko Widodo dismissed Arcandra Tahar from his position as Minister of Energy and Mines due to his dual citizenship in Indonesia and the United States, sparked a national discussion about the need for citizenship law reforms that fit global needs and realities.

"Dual citizenship can be a new breakthrough for Indonesia, especially in utilizing its global network and expertise," Cotdemiey reiterated. "This policy offers a more inclusive national development framework, which embraces and engages diverse capabilities of communities, both from within and outside the country."

Conclusion: A Transformative Opportunity

The Indonesian government's plan to introduce dual citizenship is a strategic move that has the potential to transform the country's economic landscape. By tapping into the expertise and resources of its diaspora, Indonesia can drive innovation, attract foreign investment, and ultimately, achieve its ambition of becoming a developed nation by 2045.

As Veronica Cotdemiey aptly stated, "The existence of dual citizenship allows Indonesian expatriates to maintain their origins and connect Indonesia with the global market. Investment and expertise from the diaspora will play an important role in shaping a strong and rapidly growing economic landscape for Indonesians." This policy shift represents a pivotal moment in Indonesia's journey towards a more prosperous and globally connected future.

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