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April 2, 2024
Real Estate Tips & Insights

Building Regulations & Permits in Indonesia

Taking on a building project in Indonesia is an exciting venture, filled with opportunities to create or transform existing spaces. 

However, having a thorough understanding of the building regulations and permits in Indonesia is needed to turn your vision into a reality. 

This article aims to simplify the process for you, addressing any questions and concerns you may have about obtaining your PBG (Building Usage Permit Perizinan Berusaha untuk Bangunan Gedung or Business Licensing for Building Construction), formerly known as (IBP) the Izin Mendirikan Bangunan or Building Construction Permit. 

We'll outline the necessary steps that need to be taken, talk about the common obstacles you may face, and offer solutions to make your journey, easier. 

Let's dive in and get you on the right track, ensuring everything is up to code according to Indonesian building law.

What is a Building Permit in Indonesia? (PBG and IMB)

In Indonesia, obtaining a Building Permit is the first step for constructing, modifying, or using a building. 

Traditionally known as the IMB, this permit gives the green light to the proposed construction, recognising that it meets with local zoning laws, adheres to safety standards, and fulfills environmental regulations. 

The IMB system has been key in ensuring that buildings across Indonesia comply with these requirements.

However, to focus on both the construction and the ongoing, lawful use of buildings, the IMB has been updated to the PBG (Permit for Building Usage).

This update represents a shift in how Indonesia manages urban development and enforces construction standards. By introducing the PBG, the focus extends beyond just the construction phase to include the entire lifespan of a building, ensuring ongoing compliance with safety and regulatory standards. 

This move towards the PBG shows Indonesia's dedication to improving construction methods, enhancing safety measures, and developing buildings that positively impact their environment over time. 

How to Obtain a PBG in Indonesia?

Obtaining a PBG in Indonesia involves a series of steps designed to ensure that buildings meet the required legal and safety standards.

Step 1: Preparing the Documentation

Securing a PBG starts with thorough preparation of all necessary documentation.

This includes; acquiring land ownership certificates to prove your right to the land, detailed plans of the proposed building design that comply with local zoning and architectural standards, and comprehensive environmental impact assessments to demonstrate the project's sustainability. 

These documents form the backbone of your PBG application, laying the groundwork for a successful submission. It's essential to ensure accuracy and completeness to avoid delays or rejections.

Step 2: Submitting the Application

With your documents in hand, the next step is to formally submit your PBG application to the local building authority. This involves filling out the application form with precise details about your project and attaching all the required documentation. 

The submission process may vary slightly depending on the local jurisdiction, so it's advisable to check with the local authority for specific guidelines. Timely and complete submission is key to moving your application forward in the process.

Step 3: Inspection and Approval

After submitting your application, the local building authority will review your documents and may schedule an on-site inspection. 

This inspection is to verify that your proposed project meets all the necessary regulations and standards, including safety, environmental impact, and adherence to zoning laws. 

Following a successful inspection, and assuming all criteria are met, the PBG will be issued, permitting you to move forward with your building project. 

Step 4: Compliance with Additional Requirements

In some cases, additional requirements may need to be met before final approval is granted. 

This could include getting clearances from other governmental departments, such as the fire department for fire safety measures or the environmental agency for additional environmental protection. 

Being proactive in identifying and fulfilling these extra requirements can speed up the PBG process.

Step 5: Finalizing the Permit

Once all inspections are passed and additional requirements are met, the final step is to collect your PBG. This may involve paying any associated fees and submitting any final paperwork. 

It is important to keep a copy of  PBG and all related documents for your records and future reference. 

With your PBG in hand, you are now authorized to begin construction

Reasons Why Your PBG Permit May be Denied

Securing a PBG permit is a critical step in the construction process in Indonesia, but there are several reasons why an application might be rejected.

Non-Compliance with Zoning Laws

Zoning laws are designed to organize urban spaces in a way that balances development with community needs and environmental protection. 

If your proposed construction project doesn't fit within the local zoning regulations, for example, if you're planning a commercial building in a residential area, your PBG application is likely to be denied.

It's essential to understand and adhere to these laws to ensure your project can proceed.

Inadequate Environmental Impact Assessment

An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) evaluates how your construction project might affect the surrounding environment. This assessment must be thorough, covering potential impacts on local wildlife, water sources, air quality, and more. 

If your EIA is considered poor or if it shows negative impacts without offering acceptable mitigation actions, your PBG application may be rejected.

Insufficient Safety Measures

Building projects must meet strict safety standards to protect workers, future occupants, and the general public. This includes structural integrity, fire safety, and emergency evacuation plans. 

If your application or building design fails to demonstrate that these safety measures are in place and fully compliant with Indonesian building codes, your PBG could be denied.

Incomplete Documentation

The PBG application process requires a complete set of documents, including ownership certificates, detailed building plans, and the EIA.

Missing any required document or submitting incomplete or inaccurate information can lead to a denial. 

Ensuring that all paperwork is complete, accurate, and submitted in the correct format is essential for a successful application.

Failure to Consult with Local Communities

In some cases, especially for projects that impact local environments or communities, failure to engage with and get approval from local stakeholders can be a ground for PBG denial. 

Community consultation can identify potential issues or opposition early in the planning process, allowing for adjustments that accommodate community concerns and requirements.

Lack of Infrastructure Support

If the proposed construction site lacks the necessary infrastructure support, such as access to roads, water supply, sewage, and electrical services, the PBG application may be denied. 

Projects must show that they can be supported by existing infrastructure or that there are plans to develop the required infrastructure without negatively impacting the surrounding area.

Historical or Cultural Preservation Concerns

Projects located in areas with historical, archaeological, or cultural significance may face additional scrutiny. If construction threatens to disrupt or damage sites of cultural heritage, the PBG application could be rejected.

It's important to conduct comprehensive research and possibly consult with cultural preservation bodies before applying to these areas.

Overburdened Public Services

In areas where public services and amenities are already stretched thin, adding more strain through new construction might not be viable. 

If a project is considered to overburden existing public services like schools, hospitals, and emergency services, the PBG permit may be denied. This is to ensure that the quality of life for existing residents is not affected by new developments.

Non-Adherence to Design Standards

Indonesia has specific design standards that buildings must adhere to, which may include aesthetic considerations, height restrictions, and setback requirements from property boundaries. 

Projects that do not comply with these design standards may see their PBG applications denied.

How Much Does the PBG Permit Cost in Indonesia?

The cost of obtaining a PBG permit in Indonesia is not a one-size-fits-all figure; it fluctuates based on several factors including the project's geographical location, its scale, and the specific type of construction being undertaken. 

Typically, the fee structure is designed to calculate costs based on the total area of the building and its intended function, meaning that larger commercial ventures are likely to face higher fees than smaller residential projects. 

This variation emphasises the need to directly consult the local building authority or regulatory body in your project's area to get an accurate estimate of the PBG permit costs. 

Municipalities across Indonesia may have different fee schedules and requirements, making it vital to gather this information early in the planning process to ensure you budget for all necessary expenses.


What is the difference between IMB and PBG?

While both IMB and PBG are building permits in Indonesia, the PBG is an updated version that focuses on the construction phase of the project, as well as the long-term use and compliance of the building within safety and environmental standards.

Can foreigners apply for a PBG in Indonesia?

Yes, foreigners can apply for a PBG in Indonesia if they are involved in commercial projects or own property through a legal entity. However, the process might involve additional steps or requirements to ensure compliance with Indonesian laws regarding foreign ownership and investment.

How long does it take to obtain a PBG?

The time it takes to get a PBG can vary depending on the complexity of the project, the completeness of the submitted documents, and the efficiency of the local authorities. Generally, it could take anywhere from a few weeks to several months. 

Is a PBG required for renovations or only new constructions?

A PBG is required for both new constructions and significant renovations that change the structure or intended use of a building. Minor renovations may not require a new PBG, but it's always best to consult with local authorities to determine if your project falls under the PBG requirements.


Understanding building regulations and permits in Indonesia is crucial for compliance and successful project completion. 

By following the outlined steps and being aware of potential reasons for permit denial, you can navigate the process more confidently. 

For further assistance and detailed information on available properties, get in touch with our agents and get started on your dream project.

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