Indonesian President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo on Thursday ordered government officials to find a permanent solution to prevent devastating annual forest fires, mainly started by humans but made worse by climate change.

Indonesia last year suffered the worst forest blazes in four years; 1.6 million hectares of its forests and peat lands were burned. The World Bank estimated total damage and economic losses from the fires amounted to $5.2 billion.

Southeast Asia has suffered for years from smoke caused by the fires, which raised health and environmental concerns and at times diplomatic tensions between neighbors.