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March 28, 2017

THE BACKGROUND OF THE BUILDING THE INDONESIAN CENTRAL BANK MUSEUM

This half century would be longer if we took into account the role of the Central Bank’s predecessor, namely De Javasche Bank (DJB) that had been incorporated in 1828 or 177 years ago. Meanwhile, the Central Bank Building in the downtown area that had been constructed and occupied by DJB, and then used by the Central Bank for some period of time, is now virtually vacant and is no longer used. Yet, it owns a highly valuable historical value but it is prone to damage if not utilized and preserved. The Government has designated this building as a conserved cultural site. In addition, the Central Bank also owns historical artifacts and documents that must be taken care of and selected as to provide truly useful information for the public at large.

Inspired by the genuine wish to provide the knowledge to the public about the Central Bank’s role in the national history, as well as to objectively inform of the background and impacts of the Central Bank’s policies made from time to time, the Board of Governors of the Indonesian Central Bank has decided to set up the Indonesian Central Bank Museum by utilizing and preserving the former Central Bank building in the downtown area. This effort will in line with policy of the Government of the Special Capital Territory of Jakarta in turning the downtown area into the development of the old Jakarta downtown. In this respect, the Central Bank is expected to serve as the pioneer in preserving or revitalizing the historical buildings in the downtown area.

This reason, among others, has sparked the idea to establish the Indonesian Central Bank Museum which is expected to serve as an institution to gather, store, take care of, secure and make use of various artifacts and objects pertaining to the long journey of the Indonesian Central Bank. Currently, there are a number of other museums of which their existence is linked to the Central Bank history, but these museums have not been maximally utilized by the public. Besides, the idea to establish the Indonesian Central Bank Museum has also been inspired by the central bank museums in other countries, namely as institutions which are integrated to the existence of such central banks.

:: The Goal of Establishing the Indonesian Central Bank Museum

To support the development of the old city zone as the tourism destination at the Special Capital Territory of Jakarta, it would be appropriate decision to designate the Central Bank Building of the downtown area as cultural site preservation by the Government and turned into the Indonesian Central Bank Museum. The existence of this museum, in line with the efforts to promote tourism along with the other museums situated in the neighborhood, such as Fatahillah Museum, Shadow Puppet Museum, Ceramic Museum, Sea Museum in the Fish Market area. BI has expected that the existence of the Indonesian Central Bank would pave the way for setting up of the central bank museum in Indonesia. This museum carries out the mission to search, collect, store and take care of the artifacts and historical documents currently owned. As a result, it would become invaluable institution for the general public. This would materialize if we could present everything in a form capable to cater complete and sequential information in such a way that it would be understood by the public in general.

This planned museum is also expected to serve as an educational and research facility for the Indonesian public as well as international community concerning the function and duties of the Indonesian Central Bank. In addition, it served as the recreation facility. If these are fulfilled, the public relations role in respect to the image building of BI as the central bank will run better. In line with BI’s role, this museum will expectedly show BI’s overall characteristics, viewed from its institutional, monetary, banning and payment system aspects which are structured in its perspective history. We are fully aware that this planned museum establishment is not a simple idea, but an idea with multiple goals. With its all existing limitations and constraints, among others those relating to the level of appreciation of the Indonesian community towards a museum which is relatively not at par with that in developed countries, the steps to set up the Indonesian Central Bank museum apparently require endurance and meticulousness. In view of the limited capability and knowledge of BI about museum management, collaboration with experts from different fields is required to jointly materialize this idea comprehensively from its concept up to its future physical execution.

While the physical preparation for the museum construction is underway, the Indonesian Central Bank Museum will be presented in the form of a cyber museum. This Cyber Indonesian Central Bank Museum will depict the long history of BI being the institution in charge of the monetary, banking and payment system. And all this may be followed from time to time, since the period of DJB up to the BI period during the enactments of Act No. 11 of 1953, Act No. 13 of 1968, Act No. 23 of 1999, and Act No. 3 of 2004 which remain in effect until today.

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