Lawmakers’ trip to Germany to meet protest

Jakarta Post, 18 November 2012

jakartapost_logoIndonesian lawmakers’ working visit to Germany to learn about engineering legislation is expected to be met with hostility from Indonesian communities in the Western European country.

The Berlin chapter of the Association of Indonesian College Students (PPI), the German branch of Nahdlatul Ulama and Watch Indonesia! in Berlin said in a joint statement that they were opposed to the visit because it lacked transparency and urgency.

Eleven members of the House of Representatives’ legislation committee are scheduled to visit Germany Nov. 17–23. Another 11 lawmakers will depart for Britain for the same purpose next month.

Committee chairman Ignatius Mulyono said that the visits to Germany and Britain were part of the House’s efforts to obtain input needed to draft a bill on engineering. The law will be vital for Indonesia to regulate free competitions when Indonesia fully implements the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA).

PPI Berlin chairman Yoga Kartiko said that the lawmakers should focus on domestic problems before they conduct so-called “comparative studies”.

“It would be more productive to study key issues in the bill with local experts and relevant institutions knowing that the Indonesian situation is starkly different from that of Germany,” he said.

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