goodmorningpapua.com – Soon Indonesia’s border with Papua New Guinea in Papua to be opened. The border has been closed since the Covid-19 pandemic broke out in March 2021.
Head of the Bureau of Borders and Foreign Cooperation of the Papua Provincial Government, Suzanna Wanggai said that the Indonesia – Papua New Guinea border to be reopened on Monday, June 21, 2021.
“We are preparing regulations to prevent the spread of Covid-19,” said Suzanna some time ago.
In her opinion, the discussions about opening of the border gates of each country were held at the Cross-border Post of Skouw or PLBN Skouw, Jayapura. The opening of traffic gates for the two countries is intended to bring back a trade routes.
Indonesia and Papua New Guinea have agreed to open the gates between countries twice a week, namely Tuesday and Thursday. Incidentally, every Tuesday and Thursday are market days for people on the Papua New Guinea border. “Hopefully the implementation of the opening of inter-state traffic will run smoothly and comply with procedures,” said Suzanna.
Although Indonesia and Papua New Guinea closed their border gates during the Covid-19 pandemic, there was an agreement to open a ‘gate’ for the repatriation of migrant workers and for people who had just finished serving their sentences, both Papua New Guinea citizens and Indonesian citizens.
Researcher from the Papua Archaeological Center, Hari Suroto, said the opening of cross-border community access would have a positive impact on the economies of both countries. “As well known, Papua New Guineans are very dependent on basic necessities from the Indonesian market, which are considered cheaper and more diverse,” he said. What is important, he continued, is how the community steadily adhere to health protocols for the sake of preventing the spread of Covid-19.
As long as access of the National Cross-Border Post in Skouw and Merauke to Papua New Guinea and vice versa, is closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the pace of community trade in the two countries continually run clandestinely. People take advantage of the rat path which is generally special for people living on the border.
Residents of the border of Papua and Papua New Guinea have special red and yellow cards. This card can only be owned by residents of the border of Papua and Papua New Guinea who are over 18 years old. Red card for Indonesian citizens in Papua and yellow card for Papua New Guinea residents.