Port of Pontianak
Review and History

The Port of Pontianak is the capital of the province of West Kalimantan, Indonesia. Lying in the delta of the Kapuas River, the Port of Pontianak is about 22 kilometers east of the river’s mouth to the Java Sea.

West Kalimantan is famous for its food and produce. The main industries in the Port of Pontianak include ship-building, rubber production, and the manufacture of palm oil, pepper, sugar, tobacco, and rice. In the past, the Port of Pontianak was a center for Borneo’s gold industry. The Port of Pontianak has strong trade links with Malaysia and other ports in southeast Asia. In 2005, over 500 thousand people lived in the Port of Pontianak.

Port History

In 1771, Abdurrahman Alqadrie cleared the forest from the land between the Landak and Kapuas rivers and created a settlement. He was given the title Sultan, and the new village attracted many traders among ethnic Malays. Founded in 1772, the Port of Pontianak was the capital of the Sultanate of Pontianak, a trading station and main gold city of Borneo.

In the early 1800s, the Port of Pontianak was occupied by Dutch colonial forces, along with the rest of West Kalimantan. The Port of Pontianak became an important trading post where the Dutch exported the area’s rich natural resources.

After China’s civil war at the end of the 19th Century, many Chinese refugees came to the Port of Pontianak, adding a strong Chinese flavor to the town. Sporadic rebellions forced the Dutch to bring in additional forces to control the area.

In 1943 and 1944 during World War II, over 21 thousand people, including women and children, were killed by Japanese troops when the Japanese suspected a possible rebellion. After the war, the Japanese officers responsible for the massacre were tried by an international military tribune for their acts. Sixty years after the massacre, hidden graves were still being found in the area.

When the Japanese left the Port of Pontianak, the Dutch returned to West Kalimantan. They retained their colonial control for a few years until Indonesia independence was recognized in 1949.

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