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How to get Indonesian Citizenship

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The Republic of Indonesia is a wonderful country with more than 17,000 islands. Being the world's largest archipelago state, Indonesia offers a mix of vibrant cultures, breathtaking landscapes, bustling cities, and a rapidly developing economy, from Sumatera to Papua.


Given that, it is no wonder that every year Indonesia attracts numerous foreigners who end up falling in love with this beautiful country. They then wish to acquire its citizenship to secure a long-term stay in Indonesia, be it at Jakarta, Medan, Bali, Yogyakarta, Lombok, Bandung, and so on, and might be wondering how to obtain Indonesian citizenship.


A lot of our clients are asking us this question: how to obtain Indonesian citizenship? On top of that, they also wonder who has the rights to do it, what is the benefit, what are the requirements for the application, and what should they expect during the application.

Please be aware, that Indonesian citizenship law (Law No. 12 of 2006 on Citizenship) only acknowledges a limited dual-nationality, which means Indonesian law only allows children below the age of 18 to have dual nationality. Therefore, when a foreigner applies for Indonesian citizenship, they will be required to renounce their current nationality beforehand, and if subsequently, they apply for another nationality, they will lose their Indonesian nationality and won’t be allowed to hold their Indonesian passport anymore.


In this article, we would discuss about:

Obtaining Indonesian Citizenship

Why Become an Indonesian Citizen?

Being a citizen of Indonesia provides numerous of benefits:


  1. Freedom of movement to travel and establish a business in Indonesia: As an Indonesian citizen, one has the freedom to live, work, establish a business in Indonesia, and travel throughout the country without restrictions. This includes access to all provinces, islands, and cities in Indonesia, each with its unique cultural nuances and economic opportunities.

  2. Economic Opportunities: As reported by World Bank in 2021, Indonesia is Southeast Asia's largest economy and one of the emerging market economies of the world. It offers vast opportunities for entrepreneurs and employees alike in sectors ranging from technology and manufacturing to tourism and agriculture. By obtaining Indonesian citizenship, one can fully participate in and benefit from such a growing economy.

  3. Property Ownership: Although the recent law has allowed foreign nationals to acquire land and property in Indonesia, such acquisition still has some limitations. Being an Indonesian citizen, however, will allow one to own land and property outright with the highest known land title in Indonesia, i.e. Hak Milik, providing more stability and investment opportunities. 

  4. Having Sense of Belonging with Family through Marriage: If a foreigner is married with an Indonesian citizen, choosing to acquire Indonesian citizenship as a foreign spouse not only allows them to engage fully in the life of their partner but also provides a sense of belonging to their new family. It can significantly deepen their connection to their spouse's heritage, allowing them to understand their customs, traditions, and values from a first-hand perspective. It grants one the ability to fully participate in Indonesian life—from voting in local elections, and purchasing property, to enjoying the same social benefits as their spouse.

Who Can Obtain Indonesian Citizenship?

Indonesian citizenship is automatically obtained by children who are born to at least one Indonesian parent, regardless of their place of birth and the marriage status of their parents.


Aside from the above, people in the following situations also have the rights to ask for Indonesian citizenship:

  1. Foreigners who have resided in Indonesia for a long-term (as an entrepreneur, employees, retirees, etc.);

  2. Foreign spouse of an Indonesian citizen;

  3. An ex-Indonesian citizen;

  4. A foreign child (less than 5 years old), who is adopted by an Indonesian citizen; and

  5. Foreigners who have significant contribution to Indonesia’s nation.

Obtaining Indonesian Citizenship
Obtaining Indonesian Citizenship

How to Obtain an Indonesian Citizenship?

The means to obtain Indonesian Citizenship can be different depending on the person’s situation. Unless in a situation of adoption or a foreigner with a significant contribution to Indonesia’s nation, Indonesian citizenship in essence can be obtained through naturalization.


Basically, there are 3 (three) main categories of naturalization: 

  1. Naturalization for foreigners who have resided in Indonesia for a long term;

  2. Naturalization for foreign spouse of an Indonesian citizen; and

  3. Naturalization for an ex-Indonesian citizen.

Although the Indonesian Citizenship Law outlines similar requirements for the three categories of naturalization, the administrative procedure itself may vary. For example, the naturalization of the foreign spouse of an Indonesian citizen can be done online at the platform of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, 


In general, applying for Indonesian citizenship will go through the following procedure:

  1. Submission of the administrative requirements to the Regional Office (Kantor Wilayah) of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights.

  2. Interview with the official of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights to confirm whether the foreigners indeed fluently speak Indonesia and to verify their general knowledge of the Indonesian nation; and

  3. If the application is confirmed, the foreigners will take an oath of allegiance to Indonesia before the president.

What are the requirements for naturalization?

Article 9 of the Indonesian Citizenship Law outlines the administrative requirements of naturalization as follows:

  1. The applicant must be at least 18 years old or be married.

  2. The applicant must have resided in Indonesia for a minimum of five consecutive years or ten non-consecutive years at the time of application, which can be proven by obtaining the Surat Keterangan Keimigrasian (SKIM).

  3. The applicant must be in good physical and mental health.

  4. The applicant must possess proficiency in the Indonesian language and accept the Pancasila (the foundational philosophical theory of Indonesia) and the 1945 Constitution of the Republic of Indonesia.

  5. The applicant should not have been sentenced for a crime that is punishable by one year or more in prison

  6. Upon acquiring Indonesian citizenship, the applicant should not hold dual nationality

  7. The applicant must have employment or a steady source of income.

  8. The applicant is required to pay a citizenship fee to the State Treasury.

Obtaining Indonesian Citizenship

Why work with us?

At Tampubolon Legal Solutions, our team of Indonesian lawyers provides a complete legal solution for foreigners who wish to obtain Indonesian citizenship. Our lawyers are experienced in guiding our clients through the naturalization process by providing complete step-by-step guidance to prepare the documents required to obtain Indonesian citizenship, including SKIM and Indonesian Police Clearance Certificate (SKCK).

We are committed to simplifying the arduous task of obtaining Indonesian citizenship. Our experienced professionals will be with you throughout the entire process, helping you navigate through the often-challenging Indonesian bureaucracy.

We look forward to helping you achieve your Indonesian citizenship goals.

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