Indonesia map, by Indonesia Tourism.

Indonesia map, by Indonesia Tourism.

By: Sahrudin –

INDONESIA, one of Southeast Asia countries, is often referred to as the world’s largest archipelago.

The country comprises more than 17,000 islands, and are inhabited by more than 250 million people.

According to Indonesia’s Central Statistics Agency (BPS), there are about 1.128 indigenous ethnic groups as well as significant Chinese-Indonesian and Arab-Indonesian communities.

An estimated 546 languages are spoken but Bahasa Indonesia is the official tongue.

English is only widely spoken in major tourist centers, for instance, Bali Island, and of course, in every English-speaking courses and colleges and star hotels (hehehe).

IN AUGUST 19, 1945, Preparatory Committee for Indonesian Independence (PPKI) determined that the Republic of Indonesia consisted of eight provinces: Sumatera, West Java, Central Java, East Java, Lesser Sunda (Indonesian: Sunda Kecil) or Nusa Tenggara Islands, Kalimantan, Sulawesi or Celebes and Maluku or Moluccas.

In 1950, Sumatera was divided into provinces of North Sumatera, Central Sumatera and South Sumatera, and the Special Region of Yogyakarta was established separately from Central Java. Since then, there were 11 provinces in Indonesia.

The number of provinces in the country continued to grow year on year: 15 provinces (1956), 17 provinces (1957), 20 provinces (1958), 21 provinces (1960), 25 provinces (1967), 26 provinces (1969) and 27 provinces in 1976.

In 1999, people of East Timor voted to separate from the Republic of Indonesia through a referendum, making it an independent nation in 2002.

And since 2002, Indonesia became the home of 33 provinces, ranging from Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam, the country’s most western province to Papua, the easternmost one.***


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