Capital city Jakarta
Surface 1,919,440 km²
Population 270,204,000
Road network length 213,649 km
Length of highway network 2,489 km
First highway 1978
Motorway name Jalan Bebas Hambatan
Traffic drives Left
License plate code RI

Indonesia (Indonesia), formally the Republic of Indonesia (Republik Indonesia) is a large country in Southeast Asia. The country has 270 million inhabitants and is 40 times the size of the Netherlands. It consists of numerous large and small islands. The capital is Jakarta.


According to ABBREVIATIONFINDER, Indonesia is an archipelago in Southeast Asia and has land borders with Malaysia, Papua New Guinea and East Timor. The country is located north of Australia and measures a maximum of 5,300 kilometers from east to west and approximately 1,600 kilometers from north to south, making it one of the most extensive countries in the world. The country consists of thousands of islands, of which Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Sulawesi and New Guinea are the largest. New Guinea is the second largest island in the world, about half of it is Indonesian territory.

The country consists of 17,508 islands, of which 6,000 are inhabited. The country is located on both sides of the equator and the country is the 15th largest in the world. The Puncak Jaya in Papua is the highest point at 4,884 meters. There are few longer rivers because the distances on the islands are not great enough, but a number are large in water discharge due to the large-scale precipitation. To the west is the Indian Ocean, to the east the Pacific Ocean. The Java Sea separates Java from Borneo, the Celebes Sea separates Borneo and Sulawesi from the Philippines. The Timor Sea and Arafura Sea lie between Indonesia and Australia.

The island of Java is the economic center of Indonesia, where Jakarta and a number of other large cities are also located. The island measures almost 1,000 kilometers from east to west and a maximum of 200 kilometers from north to south and is located between Sumatra and Bali. Sumatra is much larger, measuring over 1,700 kilometers in length and over 400 kilometers in width, and is right next to Singapore and Malaysia. The Indonesian part of Borneo is called Kalimantan and has a land border with Malaysia. There are few major cities here and the island measures 1,100 kilometers from east to west and 1,250 kilometers from north to south, partly in Malaysia. The island of Sulawesi mainly consists of jagged peninsulas. The Indonesian part of the island of New Guinea is called Papua and borders Papua New Guinea. The Indonesian part measures 1,250 kilometers from east to west and 730 kilometers from north to south.

Indonesia is located on the equator and therefore has more or less the same temperatures all year round, with an equatorial climate. There is a rainy season and a dry season. The average maximum temperature in Jakarta fluctuates between 29°C and 31°C all year round. The precipitation amounts to 1,800 mm per year, most of which falls between October and May.


Indonesia’s population doubled from 75 to 150 million inhabitants in just 25 years between the 1950s and the 1970s. At the end of the 1990s, the limit of 200 million inhabitants was exceeded and in 2015 the limit of 250 million inhabitants was exceeded. See Indonesia population density.

The capital Jakarta is located on Java and has 10 million inhabitants. The agglomeration is one of the largest in the world with 30 million inhabitants. There are a total of 9 cities with more than 1 million inhabitants, including Bandung, Surabaya, Medan, Bekasi, Palembang and Semarang. Java is the most populous island in the world with 151 million inhabitants, which equates to 1,121 inhabitants per km². However, the other islands are considerably less populated, Sumatra has 50 million inhabitants, Sulawesi has 18 million inhabitants and Kalimantan has 16 million inhabitants.

Indonesia is ethnically diverse, with over 300 ethnic groups. Most Indonesians are of Austronesian or Melanesian descent. Javanese are the largest ethnic group with approximately 40% of the population. The Sundanese, Batak and Madurese then form the largest groups.

The official language of Indonesia is Indonesian (Bahasa Indonesia), a variant of Malay that has been the lingua franca on the archipelago for centuries. Due to the large population of Indonesia, it is one of the most widely spoken languages ​​in the world. In addition, most people also speak their own regional language, there are more than 700 languages ​​registered in Indonesia. Javanese is considered the most spoken language in the world that has no official status. Indonesian and most other languages ​​are written in the Latin script, although many languages ​​used to be written in a different script. Dutch has no official status in Indonesia and is hardly spoken anymore. English is widely spoken as a foreign language, the number of English-language media in Indonesia is relatively large.


Indonesia is a member of the G20 and is the largest economy in Southeast Asia. In 2018, it was the 16th largest economy in the world. Originally, the economy of Indonesia was mainly focused on agriculture, in order to be able to provide for its own food supply. From the 1960s onwards, the country started to industrialize and urbanize more, especially around Jakarta. Due to economic growth, poverty fell sharply from about 60% in the 1960s to about 15% in the 1980s. However, the country was hit hard by the Asian financial crisis of 1997. After 2000, the economy started to grow strongly again. Unemployment is low and poverty has been reduced to around 10% of the population. A large middle class has emerged in and around the major cities.

The country exports a diverse mix of mining, oil, gas, and agricultural and forestry products. The largest export product is coal, followed by palm oil, gas, oil and gold. Indonesia also has a large manufacturing industry, especially in the textile sector and electronic devices. The manufacturing industry is largely located in Java.


The archipelago was strategically located on trade routes between India and China. Foreign powers have always had a great influence on the archipelago. Muslims brought Islam to Indonesia, later followed by Christianity by Europeans. The spice trade was of great importance in the late Middle Ages. Indonesia gradually came under Dutch colonial rule. The capital was then called Batavia. Although Indonesia has been under Dutch rule for more than 3 centuries, there were also influences from the Portuguese, French and British. Indonesia was occupied by Japan during World War II. Shortly after the war, the Netherlands tried to keep Indonesia as a colony, but the Netherlands gave the so-called ‘police actions’ against the Indonesians’ war of independence under great American pressure; ie the help of the Americans to rebuild the Netherlands. With the change of the throne of Wilhelmina to Juliana, it became possible to administratively accept the independence of the former colony proclaimed by Sukarno in 1945 in the Netherlands as well. Indonesia thus formally became an independent country at the end of 1949. The western part of the island of Papua remained under Dutch administration for some time (‘Dutch New Guinea’) and only became part of Indonesia in 1962. The long colonial history, the war of independence and the nationalization of Dutch company assets in the early 1950s resulted in a large migration of Indisch Dutch to the Netherlands. Dutch New Guinea’) and only became part of Indonesia in 1962. The long colonial history, the war of independence and the nationalization of Dutch company assets in the early 1950s resulted in a large migration of Indisch Dutch to the Netherlands. Dutch New Guinea’) and only became part of Indonesia in 1962. The long colonial history, the war of independence and the nationalization of Dutch company assets in the early 1950s resulted in a large migration of Indisch Dutch to the Netherlands.

The first president of Indonesia was Sukarno, his government leaned more and more towards a dictatorship from the late 1950s. An attempted coup in 1965 was followed by the Indonesian massacre of 1965-66, in which the Communist Party of Indonesia was destroyed. This was covertly backed by Western governments as part of their strategy to curtail communism in Asia. The number of deaths in this period is estimated at 500,000 to 3 million. However, Sukarno was weakened and was succeeded by Suharto in 1968, after which a period of solid economic growth followed. He was president for 31 years, until he stepped down in 1998 as a result of the financial crisis that erupted in 1997. In 1999 East Timor votedbefore independence, it was then occupied by Indonesia for 25 years after it gained independence from Portugal. Indonesia was ruled by three presidents between 1998 and 2004, after which the country was ruled by President Yudhoyono for an extended period from 2004 to 2014, followed by Joko Widodo.

It is planned to move Indonesia’s capital to Kalimantan on the island of Borneo. The new capital is to be called ‘Nusantara’.

Indonesia Location Map