THE development of the Tanjung Lesung Special Economic Zone (SEZ) should have been accelerated, but in reality, it has not shown any significant progress till date.
Situated on the western coast of Java island in the district of Pandeglang, Banten province, the Tanjung Lesung resort was expected to become Indonesia`s new hub for business activities and a novel gateway for tourists following the presence of the SEZ.
However, Banten Governor Wahidin Halim opined that the development of the Tanjung Lesung SEZ was slow and need to be accelerated. After chairing an evaluation meeting of the national strategic project in Serang recently, Halim questioned the slow development of Tanjung Lesung SEZ.
The governor then asked the developer, namely PT. Banten West Java (BWJ), to be more enthusiastic in accelerating the construction of facilities and infrastructure that are part of its obligations. The accelerated development of the Tanjung Lesung SEZ is also part of Banten provincial government`s program to expedite the transformation process by increasingly building connectivity infrastructure.
In the meantime, Pandeglang District Head, Irna Narulita, has asked the developer of Tanjung Lesung to have a clear commitment, considering that the development progress of the tourism sector in the area seemed slow.
According to her, PT BWJ, as the developer of Tanjung Lesung, must have commitment and targets related to the development of the Zone.
Narulita remarked that the Pandeglang District Government would continue to encourage the developer to speed up the development of Tanjung Lesung, so that it could truly be well integrated this year.
Accordingly, PT. West West Java President Director, Poernomo Siswoprasetijo, remarked that his side had been committed to accelerating the development of Tanjung Lesung SEZ, as suggested by the governor of Banten and the district head of Pandeglang regarding the construction of supporting facilities and infrastructure.
Inaugurated by President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) in February 2015, the Tanjung Lesung Zone would be developed into a maritime-based, world-class integrated tourism area in Indonesia.
Jokowi, at the time, expressed hope that the development of the Serang-Panimbang toll road, which had been set for completion in three years, could be carried out in tandem with the construction of the Tanjung Lesung SEZ.
Jokowi noted that the development of the toll road would be carried out by the government, which would then be followed up by the development of the Tanjung Lesung SEZ for tourism.
Jokowi remarked in 2015 that the SEZ for tourism in Tanjung Lesung was declared 24 years ago, and a presidential decree on the development was issued three years ago, but the central and regional governments were too slow to follow it up.
Therefore, the president affirmed at the time that he had set a target to complete it in three years. The Tanjung Lesung tourism region, which is built in the coastal tourism area, is based on the Water City tourism master design in 2020, similar to the one in Venice, Italy. Tanjung Lesung is one of the popular tourism areas in Banten, besides the Carita Beach and other coastal tourism locations.
Tanjung Lesung also has the Ujung Kulon National Park (TNUK) located on the westernmost tip of Java where Mount Krakatoa is also located. The SEZ for tourism covers an area of 1.3 thousand hectares, which will have various tourism infrastructure and facilities, including hotels, tourism vocational schools, and other supporting facilities.
The beaches along Tanjung Lesung coastline are known to be some of the best as they offer good surf, calm swimming spots, considerably healthy reefs, and white inviting sands. Only a three-hour car ride away from bustling Jakarta and just 30 minutes from Carita beach, Tanjung Lesung is a pleasant choice for a weekend getaway.
Although Jakartans and beachgoers from other cities in the country continue to flock to this area on the western coast of Java, Tanjung Lesung will remain serene and private, as there are limited accommodations there.
The beauty and serenity of Tanjung Lesung surrounding area is also due to the legendary peak of Krakatau, the sight that makes Sunda Strait famous around the world. Krakatoa, or Krakatau in Indonesian, is undeniably famous for its volcanoes in the archipelago due to the world?s loudest recorded bang that it created in 1883. Scientists from across the world still come to conduct research on the volcanic richness of West Java coast and its natural surroundings.
Today, Tanjung Lesung offers an ideal location to unwind and immerse oneself in the beauty of nature found along the vast stretches of soft white sandy beaches, clear and calm blue waters, and fresh tropical breeze.The 15-kilometer-long shoreline offers an array of beach activities, such as beach volley, beach football, and enables visitors to simply soak in the indulging sunshine.
Tanjung Lesung can also act as a staging point for those keen on venturing to the Krakatau volcanic island or planning to visit the TNUK. No wonder, the Tanjung Lesung SEZ is expected to serve as an important driver for achieving sustainable economic growth and creating jobs for the public of Pandeglang district. The Tanjung Lesung SEZ, with a 13-kilometer coastline, will become an integrated tourist destination among the 536 tourism attractions in Banten province. [antaranews/photo special]