According to the Indonesian-based news site, the new time zone could be implemented as early as October, with feasibility studies establishing that a single time zone would help the banking industry and businesses in general.
Furthermore with Indonesia's land territory spanning over 5,100km, the time zone change would benefit Indonesia by shortening the trade waiting time between the country's different regions, said Minister of Trade Gita Wirjawan.
The government plans to implement the new time zone (GMT+8) on October 28th, or "Youth Pledge Day" (Sumpah Pemuda) – when in 1928, a group of young men and women from across the archipelago had assembled in the capital of Jakarta to pledge that they would be united under one nation, one flag and one language.
Nevertheless, the plan has already met with stiff opposition from some religious and political leaders, with even former vice president Jusuf Kalla rejecting the unification plans as "illogical”.
The Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI), Indonesia’s top Muslim cleric body, too initially said that the unified time zone may result in potentially confusing new prayer hours, though it later retracted its claim.
Professor Al Yasa Abubakar, an expert of Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence) at the Islamic University Ar-Raniry in Banda Aceh, told Khabar Online that he agreed with the time zone unification as long as long as it did not disrupt people's religious rituals.
According to a report by the Jakarta Post last month, The secretariat of the Committee for Expansion and Acceleration of Indonesian Economic Growth (KP3EI) claimed that the unification plan for Indonesia’s time zones would provide economic efficiencies of up to 500 billion rupiahs (US$53 million) a day.
Indonesia will also be following in the example of Samoa, who moved their time zone 24 hours ahead last year in order to catch up with the major trading partners in Asia.