Indonesian Government Intervention in the Management of Indonesian Migrant Workers’ Remittances: Is It Constitutionally Justified?




Remittance Management, Constitutional Justification, Indonesia, Government Intervention


The latest law on the protection of Indonesian Migrant Workers (IMWs), Law Number 18 of 2017 (Law 18/2017), obliges the Indonesian government to conduct economic protection through remittance management by involving certain institutions. Nonetheless, there is a lack of clarity about how this intervention would occur. The private nature of migrant workers’ remittances leads to the question of constitutional justification essential for the government’s authority to intervene – particularly in Indonesia as a constitutional state in the form of a welfare state – besides skepticism concerning the applicability of the norm. This paper emphasizes the constitutional silence with regard to state intervention in human resources allocation, as it makes the deployment of Indonesian workers abroad constitutionally groundless. Consequently, the discretion infiltrates the remittance, a component of national income that is essentially a private transfer in which the management should be fully controlled by the families. Through review of the scientific literature and legal document analysis, this research found that the inclusion of a state intervention provision on human resources into the 1945 Constitution is still required.

Author Biographies

Annisa Ayuningtyas , Faculty of Law, Universitas Gadjah Mada

Annisa Ayuningtyas is an LLM graduate from the Faculty of Law, Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM), Indonesia with the major of law and governance. She is currently a researcher at the Research Centre for Law, Gender and Society at the Faculty of Law UGM. Her primary area of interest is the remittance of migrant workers. She is also involved in research on several vulnerable groups including migrant workers, women, and transgender people. 

Mailinda Eka Yuniza, Faculty of Law, Universitas Gadjah Mada

Dr. Mailinda Eka Yuniza is an associate professor at the Administrative Law Department, Faculty of Law, Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM), Indonesia and has been with the University since 2005. She is also a researcher at the Center for Energy Study, UGM. She obtained her LL.B. in 2004 at UGM, and LLM at Melbourne University before she acquired her PhD from UGM. Her primary areas of interests are administrative law, energy law, and health law. She is heavily involved in policy-making in Indonesia, in particular helping to provide consultation to government institutions. As an ardent academic and researcher, she has been continuously publishing in peer-reviewed journals and presented papers in several national and international conferences. 


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