"Indonesia has enough water potentials but the potentials are not well managed so that they become causes of floods," the told a seminar on natural disasters here on Monday.
Of over five thousand rivers in the country, about 600 have to be managed well because they have the potentials to cause floods.
The Ciliwung River, for example, which is one of the 13 rivers running through Jakarta, overflowed last January resulting in floods which claimed dozens of lives and crippled activities in Jakarta.
The minister said that because water became a problem if it was not handled properly, hundreds of countries once held a conference to find out solution and water utilization in the Middle East.
He said he was the Indonesian ambassador to Saudi Arabia at that time and took part in the conference which was attended by participants from 200 countries.
Salim said that the Nile River which was the longest river in the world stretching about six kilometers long and passed on a number of countries had been managed well. "It has been managed well with regard to which countries get the water allocation," he said.
However, a number of countries in the world, including Indonesia, faced difficulties and water crisis during the dry spells but experienced floods during the rainy season.
In the meantime, seeing from the geographical aspect, Indonesia, which an island country, had two-third water area while the remaining one-third was land area.
This condition during certain seasons caused Indonesia to also experience tidal floods in a number of coastal areas, he said.
Editor : A Abdussalam
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