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Jokowi wants fairer distribution of LPDP scholarships

posted Feb 9, 2017, 6:58 PM by Brook Ross   [ updated Feb 9, 2017, 6:59 PM ]
Posted in full from The Jakarta Post, February 8, 2017

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has called on the Endowment Fund for Education (LPDP) to provide equal scholarship opportunities to study masters and doctoral degrees abroad and in Indonesia for all Indonesians especially for those living in least-developed provinces. Jokowi said Indonesia would enjoy a demographic bonus for the next 13 years in which the country would see a major part of the population in the productive age bracket.

The President said providing equal opportunities for all would make them ready to become professional members of the workforce. “Investment in human resources should also be in line with development priorities. The LPDP program should focus on creating qualified human resources in priority sectors such as maritime and energy as well as manufacturing and the creative economy,” the President said in his opening speech during a Cabinet meeting on the education fund management.

The LPDP has given scholarships to a total of 16,295 students of masters and doctoral degrees, 8,406 of whom studied in universities in Indonesia while 7,889 took programs abroad.  Jokowi also highlighted the low proportion of engineers in Indonesia with only 2,672 for every 1 million people.  “The figure is lower than Malaysia’s 3,333, Vietnam’s 9,037 and South Korea’s 25,309,” he said.