The United Nations in Indonesia

Indonesia is the fourth largest country in the world by population with a total of more than 266 million people, projected to reach 319 million by 2045. It is an independent republic, a member of the G-20, and currently a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council (2019-2020), and the Human Rights Council (2020-2022).

Indonesia has seen robust economic growth and rapid development progress over the past decades. Poverty has been halved, education is near universal and more people have better access to health care, clean water and justice than ever before. Indonesia’s economy is the largest in South East Asia, and the 14th largest in the world. With a per-capita GNI of US$ 3,840 in 2018, Indonesia is a Lower-Middle Income country, close to reaching the Upper-Middle Income threshold. Its economy grew by 5 per cent annually between 2014-2018. 

Indonesia officially became the 60th member of the United Nations on 28 September 1950. Since then, the United Nations has been working in partnership with the Government to enhance development, strengthen democracy and work towards ending extreme poverty by 2030. At the country level, the relationship between the UN and the Government has evolved from a traditional donor beneficiary relationship into a strategic partnership given Indonesia’s growing middle-income status. Under the leadership of the Resident Coordinator, the UN Country Team in Indonesia (23 Agencies, Funds and Programmes and Non Resident Agencies with 1,600 personnel) currently provide policy advice, technical support and knowledge sharing on a host of development priorities, outlined in the current UN 5-year Strategy in Indonesia, the UN Partnership for Development Framework (UNPDF) 2016–2020.

Three elementary school girls smiling while reading books.
Caption: Three elementary school girls smiling while reading books.
Photo: © United Nations

The UNPDF reflects Indonesia’s middle-income status and growing development success as well as the UN’s transition from a donor to a strategic partner. Indonesia has placed inclusive and sustainable development at the heart of its national planning framework. All of the SDGs and, to date, 105 of its targets and indicators, have been integrated into successive versions of the National Development Plan (RPJMN) and into monitoring mechanisms at the national and sub-national level. So far, two Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) in 2017 and 2019 have been presented at the High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) at UNHQ. The Government also launched a more detailed SDG Roadmap in 2019 elaborating priority targets, gaps and interventions needed to attain its goals.  

On January 30, 2020, the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 outbreak a “Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC)”. The pandemic has amplified the relevance and urgency of delivering on Indonesia’s national SDG goals and targets. Indonesia’s emergence as one of the world’s leading economies with ensuing strong economic growth, a rapid decrease in poverty rates, improvements in education and access to better health services, food, water, sanitation and electricity is challenged. The UN is committed to work with the Government of Indonesia in safeguarding the progress made on achieving the SDGs and to support required measures to address any possible adverse effect such as progress in the fight against poverty (SDG1), food security and nutrition (SDG2), the risk to exacerbate inequalities (SDG10), particularly gender inequality (SDG5) and interruption in routine health services (SDG3).

On April 2020, The UN in Indonesia signed a Cooperation Framework with the Government of Indonesia, the UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF) 2021–2025.

The UNSDCF outlines a partnership between the UN and the Government of Indonesia articulating the UN’s collective actions to support Indonesia in preserving and accelerating achievements of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It was developed through a multi-stakeholder consultation process and is aligned with the National Medium-Term Development Plan (RPJMN 2020-2024)


The Sustainable Development Goals in Indonesia

Indonesia is a country on the move. In the last decade it has made important progress towards the targets of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). It has graduated to Middle Income Country status and joined the fold of the G20 major advanced and emerging economies. Indonesia is the largest country in the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN). To ensure UN’s presence in Indonesia is most effective, we are partnering with both the Government and private sector to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals together. Building and harnessing partnerships for the Sustainable Development Goals is a one in itself: Goal 17. An integrated approach is crucial for progress across the multiple goals.