The Bank Of Indonesia Museum : Monetary History

The Bank of Indonesia Museum, which displays the role of the Central Bank in the history of the Indonesian archipelago since Dutch colonial days, is located by Old Batavia’s main Fatahillah Plaza, next to the Bank Mandiri Museum, opposite the Beos Station, at Jalan Pintu Besar Utara No. 3, in present day West Jakarta.

Built in 1828 in neo-classical architecture mixed with Indonesian features, this elegant, still sturdy white building was originally a hospital, called the Binnen Hospitaal, and later housed the central bank of the East Indies: De Javasche Bank.

After Indonesia’s Independence in 1945 De Javasche Bank was nationalized and became Bank Indonesia, Indonesia’s central bank. In 1962, however, Bank Indonesia was moved to its present premises at Jalan Thamrin and the building was left empty.

But because of its location and historic significance, Bank Indonesia’s Board decided to make this into the Bank of Indonesia Museum, which was soft opened on 15 December 2006 by then Bank Indonesia governor, Burhanuddin Abdullah. Its final completion was officially inaugurated by President Bambang Yudhoyono on 21 July 2009.

This Museum provides information on the role of the central bank in the nation’s history, stretching as far back as the time before the arrival of European traders to the archipelago in the 17th century to the formation of Bank Indonesia in 1953. It further informs about the various policies made by the Bank and their impact on the national financial position until 2005.

Bank Indonesia Museum in Jakarta
Bank Indonesia Museum in Jakarta (Source : travelling.web.id)

Most of the presentations are in modern high-tech and multi-media electronic displays, static panels, touch screen television monitors and diorama, and parabolic speakers, making it clear and simple for visitors to understand some of the most complicated financial issues. Besides this, there is also a numismatic collection of coins and old legal tender used in a number of ancient Indonesian kingdoms and during the Dutch colonial era.

The Bank of Indonesia Museum is open from 9.0 am to 4.0 pm daily except Mondays and national holidays.

Entrance is free of charge.

ACTIVITIES

This is wonderful cool museum to visit especially on hot days, since the entire building is completely air-conditioned. As one enters the Museum’s welcoming cool interior from the heat outside, one sees above the main entrance an art piece of stained glass, the work of Dutch artist Ian Schouten Prinsenhof, which consists of 155 panels. Further inside is a theatre where films are regularly shown on the process of minting and the printing of money, and its distribution.

The next room shows a business scene in Old Batavia, complete with the old harbour and traders making transactions in the Bank. Here you can also see the Bank vaults and safes securely closed by thick steel doors. In the numismatic collection room are old coins and other legal tender during old Indonesian kingdoms throughout the archipelago as well as in the time of the Dutch East Indies, and early Indonesian money. There are magnifying glasses available if you want to see the displays up close.

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