Obtain Citizenship in Indonesia

Updated on Wednesday 29th June 2022

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Those who want to relocate to Indonesia have several ways of doing it. One of the easiest ways is by obtaining a job, therefore an employment permit. They also have the possibility of acquiring a residence card, which can be temporary or permanent. Those who want to permanently live can apply for citizenship in Indonesia.

The main law providing for citizenship in Indonesia is Law No. 12/2006 which replaces the first nationality act issued in 1958. Below, our Indonesia company incorporation advisors explain the requirement for applying for citizenship in this country.

Applying for this status can be important for many foreign nationals who wish to immigrate to Indonesia. If this is the case, foreign nationals should know that Indonesian dual citizenship is not an option.

Ways of obtaining Bali citizenship

Becoming a citizen of the country one relocates to is the main goal for many who choose to move to Indonesia for business or employment purposes. When one acquires this status, it will also mean that he or she will be able to apply for an Indonesian passport.

In order to obtain citizenship in Indonesia, a foreign citizen must prove that:
  • he or she has lived in Indonesia based on a permanent residence permit;
  • he or she has one or both parents of Indonesian descent.
Those seeking to apply for an Indonesian passport based on a residence permit, must have lived for at least 5 consecutive years here. Those who have stayed in Indonesia for 10 years, even if not on a continuous basis, are also allowed to apply for Indonesian citizenship. This is usually available for employees of Indonesian companies.

As part of the naturalization process, it is expected that the applicant will be able to show that he or she speaks and understands Indonesian. Proof of having civic integration can also be required and it is to be expected from all those who immigrate to Indonesia.

Our company formation agents in Indonesia can offer information on the employment of foreign workers.

Requirements to obtain citizenship in Indonesia

Before starting the application process for an Indonesian passport, one must keep in mind the aforementioned requirement that the authorities do not accept dual citizenship. Also, the application will be accepted only if the applicant has a clean criminal record.

The following documents must be submitted with the Ministry of Law and Human Rights when applying for citizenship Indonesia:
  • a letter stating the intention of becoming an Indonesian citizen;
  • legalized copy of the birth certificate;
  • copy of the identification papers;
  • recent photographs.
In the case of permanent residents, documents stating the period in which the applicant has lived in Indonesia are also required. Also, an application fee must be paid.

We remind those interested in obtaining citizenship that they will have to fulfill the regular requirements for first staying in the country lawfully under the temporary residence permit (with a usual validity of two years, renewable) and then applying for the permanent residence permit.

Our lawyers in Indonesia can give you more details.

A minimum processing time that should be expected by applicants interested in obtaining Bali citizenship is about 2 weeks. During this time, the ministry examines the documents and then issues a decree on the applicant’s request. Please note that the processing time depends on submitting accurate and complete documents. Working with our team helps applicants understand the complete set of requirements and prepare the documents as needed. with our help, you will be able to submit a full application, as asked by the authorities, and thus increase the chances for a favorable evaluation. 

Limited Indonesian dual citizenship

Children under the age of 18 can be subject to a regime that allows them to retain dual citizenship status, however, they will need to choose one of the nationalities that apply to hi or her once they turn 18 or if they are married before this age.
For those children who qualify for this dual status, it means that they will be able to hold two passports at the same time, both the Indonesian one and the one issued by their other country.
The children to which this applies are the following:
  1. born from a legal marriage between an Indonesian citizen father and a foreign citizen mother;
  2. born from a legal marriage between an Indonesian citizen mother and a foreign citizen father;
  3. born within 300 days of their father’s death, when the mother and the father were legally married and the father was an Indonesian citizen;
  4. born outside of the legal marriage of two Indonesian citizens;
  5. born outside of legal marriage from a foreign mother and an Indonesian father when the father recognizes the child before he or she turns 18 or has yet to be married;
  6. a child born in Indonesia whose parent’s status is not clear on his or her birth.
Other situations may apply, including in the case of children found on the territory of Indonesia when their parents are unknown.
Our team can give you more details about these special situations if you want to immigrate to Indonesia.

Loss of citizenship

It is not only useful to have complete information on how to obtain Bali citizenship but also to know which are the situations in which one can lose this status: the following applies:
  • Nationality-related: when one refuses to give up another nationality when presented with the opportunity to do so for gaining the Indonesian one; likewise, when one gains another nationality after having obtained the Indonesian one;
  • Foreign service: when one enters into the service of foreign soldiers without permission for this from the President (not applicable in cases in which the individual follows an educational programme for which mandatory military service may apply);
  • Residing outside the country: living outside of Indonesia for 5 continuous years for state service purposes without valid reasons and if he or she has not expressed the desire to remain an Indonesian citizen before the 5-year period expires;
  • Others: when voluntarily taking a pledge of allegiance to a foreign country, when voluntarily joining a foreign country service.
Our team can give you more details about this situation. One should also know that once the Indonesian citizenship has been lost as a result of the situations presented above, it can be regained through the usual process (this means that the individual will need to comply once more with the regular requirements for citizenship).
According to the World Bank, the following statistical data was available on the population in Indonesia:
  • 273,523,621 total population in 2020;
  • 50.35% were men and
  • 49.65% were women.

For full information on the process of applying for citizenship in Indonesia, please contact us. We remind you that we can help you start a business in Indonesia.