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Indonesia: Calls to create single time zone

Indonesia may abolish two of its current time zones later this year. A proposal by the Indonesian Economic Development Committee (KP3EI) to observe Central Indonesian Time (WITA) throughout the Southeast Asian country has so far received mainly positive responses from economists, politicians and the media. It is yet to be approved by the national government.

Update: Indonesia: Single time zone delayed

Illustration image

Already in central time zone: This Balinese dancer would not have to adjust her watch.


Closer to China

According to the proposal, the whole of Indonesia is to observe a UTC offset of +8 hours from October 28, 2012. The switch would not only harmonize local times in the archipelago, which consists of some 18,000 islands and currently spans over three time zones. It would also put Indonesia into the same time zone as some of its most important trading partners, such as China, Singapore, Western Australia, and the Philippines.

“It will make Indonesia’s financial market more integrated with other markets in the region”, the Jakarta Globe cites Aviliani, an economist from the Indonesian Institute for Development of Economics and Finance (INDEF). “It will increase the flow of exports and imports and cooperation between different regional governments.”

Time in Indonesia

Indonesia is currently divided into three time zones: The western part of the country, which includes the populous island of Java and the capital Jakarta, observes Western Indonesian Time (UTC +7 hours). The central region uses Central Indonesian Time (UTC +8 hours), and the easternmost islands run on Eastern Indonesian Time (UTC +9 hours). Indonesia does not use daylight saving time (DST).

See time zones in Indonesia and worldwide on our interactive Time Zone Map!