Published February 19, 2009

Jakarta may let expats own homes

(JAKARTA) Indonesia is considering allowing expatriates to have their own houses in the country, The Jakarta Post reported yesterday. It quoted President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono as saying he would ask the National Land Agency, the home minister and the state minister for people's housing affairs to conduct an in-depth study into granting expats home ownership rights.

'The government has no objection to this, provided it will benefit the people and make the country's climate more conducive to foreign investment,' Mr Yudhoyono said on Tuesday.

A 1996 government regulation states expats may only have house utility rights for 20 years, which may be extended for another 20 and 25 years consecutively.

Indonesian Real Estate chairman Teguh Satria called on the government to revise the regulation to grant expatriates a 70-year home ownership right, in an effort to make the country more competitive and conducive to foreign investment.

'If the government regulation is revised to allow expats to own homes, the prices of our apartments and other properties will rise sharply,' he said. -- Xinhua