When Did Indonesia Became Independent from the Dutch?

Indonesia and the Netherlands shared special relationship where they have shared history of colonial interactions for centuries. If you curious about when did Indonesia became independent from the Dutch, read explanation below.

Dutch People Arrival and Start of Colonization

Dutch people first arrived in Indonesia on June 22nd, 1596. They came to Indonesia through Banten harbor after 14 months sailed the sea. The armada was led by Cornelis de Houtman. At first, their arrival in Indonesia was warmly welcomed by Indonesian people.

However, the Dutch people came to find spices in Indonesia. They became very greedy, rude, and arrogant. They force Banten people to give them spices without paying for them. This made Banten people want the Dutch to go away from Banten.

In 1958, Dutch people came again to Banten led by Jacob van Neck. They were more polite and warm than before so Indonesian people greeted and welcomed them. Indonesian people let the Dutch people to trade spices. This success made Dutch people came back to their country with success story and lots of spices.

The success of Jacob van Neck people to get spices from Indonesia led Dutch people to compete to get spices from Indonesia. To reduce the competition, they set up organization called VOC (Verenigde Oost Indische Compagnie) led by Pieter Both. 

The colonization of Dutch people in Indonesia happened for a very long time. They made Indonesia suffer by banned Indonesian people to trade spices with other party, force Indonesian people to build road and planting, and do many other labor works.

Japan Arrival in Indonesia

While Dutch people were strong enough to be able to catch Indonesian people leaders and banned the national organizations, they weren’t able to erase Indonesian sentiment toward them. However, Indonesian people weren’t strong enough to fight against Dutch people.

On March 1942, Japanese soldiers tried to offer help to Indonesian people by taking over Indonesia from Dutch people. At first, they were very welcomed in Indonesia. Japanese people had the power to make Dutch people go from Indonesia and help Indonesian people to set up national organization and help Indonesia to prepare its independence. However, later on, Japanese people make Indonesian people suffer under their control. However, after Japanese people came to Indonesia, Indonesia can be said to be independent from the Dutch.

When Japan took over Indonesia from Dutch people, the Dutch people were catch and put in the jail. Japanese people make Indonesian people take over their roles to do Indonesian government administrative business. Japanese people also help Indonesian people army and prepare the independence. This can be said as the new era after Indonesia became independent from the Dutch.

Read more about Indonesian history:

That’s all the explanation about the answer to the question when did Indonesia became independent from the Dutch. I hope the article will be helpful and can expand your knowledge on Indonesian history.