chapter  5
22 Pages

Indonesian decentralization: Local autonomy, trade barriers and discrimination


Countries that devolve governmental authority away from the national government and toward local governments usually limit the ability of local governments to interfere with national goals and activities. National goals include national economic policy, harmony among political subdivisions, and protection of the rights of citizenship relating to the mobility of citizens within the nation. While governmental authority may be decentralized, nation-states view their internal economies as integrated, as internal free trade unions, and do not allow regional and local governments to restrict or interfere with internal or international trade. Similarly, citizenship in a nation-state should confer on citizens certain rights to move freely within the country, to take up residence in new places, and to be gainfully employed wherever they may live in the country, whether or not living in their place of birth or origin. Citizenship in the country cannot have much domestic meaning if localities can freely discriminate against traveling or newly resident non-local citizens.