North Maluku’s Widi Islands are officially auctioned off. This is how much it costs to bid

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Widi Island
(IO/Pramita Hendra)

Jakarta, IO – The Widi Islands in South Halmahera, North Maluku was auctioned on Sotheby’s Concierge Auctions website based in New York on Thursday (8/12). Bidding will open on December 8 at 4 a.m. EST (5 p.m. WITA).

On the site, Widi Islands are described as having more than 100 natural, uninhabited tropical islands surrounded by 150 kilometers of fine white sandy beaches, fertile coral reefs, and deep sea covered with rich nutrients.

The islands also have one of the most intact coral atoll ecosystems remaining on earth with a high number of animal biota. In addition, it is home to hundreds of rare and endangered species including blue whales, whale sharks, 600 documented species of marine mammals, fish, birds, insects and other species that have yet to be discovered.

“Set within a 315,000 hectare (780,000 acre) Marine Protected Area, 10,000 hectares (25,000 acres) of tropical rainforest, mangroves, turquoise lagoons, lakes and beaches await to be protected and managed by an environmentally conscious developer,” information on the site reads.

Those interested are asked to submit a US$100,000 deposit (Rp1.6 billion) just to bid. Home Minister Tito Karnavian previously said that PT Leadership Islands Indonesia (LII) is auctioning the islands off to seek foreign investors as the company lacks capital for their development.