First Indonesian-German AI Dialogue in Jakarta


On 12 December 2023, the German Federal Ministry for Digital and Transport (BMDV) and the Indonesian Ministry of Communications and Informatics (MCI) held the first Indonesian-German AI Dialogue. Together with stakeholders from business, civil society and academia, they discussed the role of harmonised regulations for artifical intelligence (AI). The event enhanced the mutual understanding of AI policies and explored collaboration opportunities.

Many stakeholders from Germany and Indonesia joined the hybrid event. © Digital Dialogues-GIZ

AI offers a variety of benefits, but also poses risks to society – especially if it is not regulated. In his opening remarks, Thomas Graf, Deputy Head of Mission at the German Embassy Jakarta, highlighted the importance of AI regulation for a safe and ethical use. He also stressed the need for a cross-sectoral and international discussion on AI policy.

Ichwan Nasution, Head of the Center of International Affairs of MCI, underscored Indonesia’s commitment to a human-centric AI approach as part of the Indonesian National AI Strategy 2045. The last opening remarks were from the AI-generated TV One presenter Bhoomi: She highlighted the significant role that AI will play in shaping the global society, economy and science.

AI development and regulation in Germany and Indonesia

The AI Dialogue began with a fireside chat – a question and answer format, moderated by Dr Sri Safitri of KORIKA. Hario Bismo Kuntarto, Head of Digital Economy and Gaming Governance of MCI, and Marc Lendermann, Head of Division Bilateral Digital Policy and Digital Dialogues at BMDV, presented both countries’ approaches on AI regulation.

Mr Kuntarto shared recent developments in Indonesia’s AI policy: Indonesia has already regulated aspects of AI and is currently drafting a comprehensive Guide of AI Ethics. Mr Lendermann presented the newly enacted EU AI Act. It regulates the use of AI so that it is secure, traceable, non-discriminatory and environmentally friendly. Mr Lendermann also mentioned the delicate balance between the regulation and fostering innovation.

Award ceremony of the 48 Hours Innovation Challenge

The winners of the 48 Hours Innovation Challenge presented their innovative solutions. © Digital Dialogues-GIZ

The AI Dialogue also included an award ceremony for the recent “48 Hours Innovation Challenge”. The Secretariat for the Indonesian-German Digital Dialogue had invited German and Indonesian students to think of innovate ways on how to use AI for sustainable urban development.

The teams from the German Brand University Hamburg and the Indonesian Binus University and IPB University won the challenge and had the opportunity to present their solutions at the AI Dialogue. The winning solutions included the creation of an intelligent waste management system called “Smart Trash”, a new inclusive mobility platform for Indonesia’s capital labelled “Jakarta Switch” and an AI-powered smart traffic management system based on CCTV data called “Urban Eye”.

Panel discussion on AI regulation

A panel discussion followed: Experts shared their insights on the role of AI in various sectors and discussed the regulation of AI. The panel was moderated by Yudhistira Nugraha, Director of Jakarta Smart City. Abhijit Sengupta from Here Technologies presented the industry’s view on AI regulation which should ensure security and data protection. Mattheace Rama Putra from KORIKA stressed that AI regulation in Indonesia should take existing laws, risks as well as the aspect of fair competition into account.

The AI-generated TV One presenter Bhoomi spoke about the growing importance of AI in society. © Digital Dialogues-GIZ

Dr Widodo Budiharto, a Binus University professor, mentioned the great benefits of AI in higher education, as it opens up innovative ways of teaching and learning. However, the potential risks of unregulated AI can outweigh the benefits, according to Budiharto. This view was shared by Dr Ayu Purwaruanti from the AI Center of the Institute of Technology Bandung. Dr Purwaruanti encouraged policymakers to involve all relevant stakeholders in the development of AI regulations – including academia, the public, investors and AI companies.

Gallery walk: Practical use of AI

The AI-generated TV One presenter Bhoomi concluded the event and spoke about the growing importance of AI in society. Then, all participants were invited to a gallery walk: Several businesses showcased how they use AI innovatively in practice and what benefits it can bring to daily life.

Looking ahead, the Indonesian-German Digital Dialogue will continue to provide a multi-stakeholder platform for the exchange on AI development and regulation in both countries.

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