Tag Archive | "Sri Mulyani"

She Belongs To The World Now

Someone sms-ed me this morning from Jakarta (thanks, bro!), he said that Indonesia’s finance minister, Ms. Sri Mulyani had been appointed as Managing Director of World Bank. I followed the news until just now, and eventually the president gave approval.

I understand that this has brought waves of twitter messages, along the the pros and contras. To me, I put it simply this way… “The world needs her”. This selection highlights the rising global role of Indonesia, the fourth most-populous nation and a member of the Group of 20 emerging and developed countries.

She is arguably the one who has guided economic policy for Indonesia, navigating successfully in the midst of the global economic crisis, implementing key reforms, and earning the respect of her peers across the world. That’s what people out there say about her.


Sandiaga Uno

Anggito Abimanyu

In fact, I am sure, there are many other individuals in Indonesia whose capacities are at the same level with Sri Mulyani’s, and are ready to replace her position as finance minister. To name a few, there are Ms. Aviliani, Mr. Anggito Abimanyu, Cyrilus Harinowo, Sandiaga Uno, and many more. These people are certainly capable enough to take that position, and I am sure, they’ll again amaze the world.

Sri Mulyani, YOU GIVE US SO MUCH PRIDE. Indonesia thanks you!

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Sri Mulyani Is Still Powerful

Again, Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for the Economy Sri Mulyani Indrawati was listed in ‘s 100 most powerful women according to Forbes magazine edition August 2009. Last year, Forbes also listed Sri Mulyani in World’s most powerful woman 2008. In 2006 and 2008, Mulyani was elected as the best Economic Minister in Asia.

Since Indrawati’s 2005 appointment as Indonesia’s finance minister, the country’s foreign exchange reserves reached an all-time high of $60 billion, and foreign investment skyrocketed. She has fought against government corruption, created tax incentives and simplified investment laws. Her performance earned her a promotion. In June Indrawati was named to run the country’s economic affairs. — Kate Macmillan

Mulyani is truly a strong woman and known globally as next world’s economic leader. Kevin Rudd once said that Mulyani can be a successful economic minister in any country.

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The Most Influential Person In Indonesia?

The most influential person in Indonesia?

As Indonesia dodges the global economic crisis bullet, Sri Mulyani, a woman educated in America, has become a star.

By Peter Gelling – GlobalPost

Published: June 25, 2009 15:13 ET
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During an audit of the tax agency she found a dearth of income from the mining sector. As it turned out, mining companies owed millions of dollars in back taxes they were avoiding through an obscure understanding with former ministers of finance. Mulyani demanded the taxes be paid and when the executives, including Bakrie, protested, she barred them from traveling.

The public and the press celebrated.

“It created a lot of headlines. Even the president asked me what is going on and asked if I could do it without so many big noises,” she said. “But we had to set new standards. It definitely created some discomfort within the cabinet. But I think they finally understood.”

Mulyani is an unlikely leader. She is the daughter of two career academics. Born in Sumatra, she is the seventh of 10 children. She spent most of her young life in Semarang on the island Java, where her parents worked at a teaching college. She then attended the respected University of Indonesia before heading to the University of Illinois for her graduate degree.

She has served as both an executive director of the International Monetary Fund and as a consultant for USAID, both of which required her to spend time in the United States.

“As minister of finance, what first comes to my mind is the question, ‘Why are we stuck in this situation?’ When I was living abroad, I saw how an international audience perceived Indonesia. In a way I knew immediately when I assumed this responsibility that there was a serious problem of perception. I set out to change that perception,” she said.

The first thing she did was sack the directors of both the customs and tax offices. When she first started, she said there was a lot of skepticism among Jakarta’s elite businessmen and politicians. They were watching her, wondering if she’d be corrupted like the rest or if real change was coming.

“The directors of the tax and customs offices had strong reputations. But despite that, after six months here, I replaced them. I had to because it was important to have a new beginning. We needed to do something different. The first thing people want to see is a major change,” she said.

President Yudhoyono has enjoyed a lot of credit for choosing Mulyani and has now chosen another academic economist, Boediono, who goes by only one name, as his running mate for the July 9 presidential election, which Yudhoyono is widely expected to win.

Boediono served as an interim Bank Indonesia governor after the arrest of its previous governor, who was the second central bank governor to be arrested on corruption charges. Like Mulyani, Boediono has strong reformer credentials and was expected to help revitalize Bank Indonesia before he was tapped for the vice presidency.

Now it seems likely that Mulyani, in the next term, will work her magic at Bank Indonesia.

“I am proud that I do a job that I feel comfortable with and enjoy. I think I can assure myself that I have never compromised my principles — that is most important. It is very simple. I just want to make Indonesia better and respectable in the eyes of the world. When I am in international forums, I want the country to which I was born and in which I live to be well-regarded.

“I think I can also be quite proud that even with all the pressure, the pain and the loneliness, I have never sacrificed my principles,” she said.

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Indonesia’s Reason To Smile

Indonesia is now among the top 20 economies in the world (and on the UN Security Council) and its position within the G20 is assured by continuing growth rates. It is overtaking Belgium and Sweden and will very soon overtake Turkey to become the largest Muslim-led economy in the world. It is likely to keep growing and then join the top ten economies in the world sometime between 2020 and 2025.

Indonesia is really on the move despite the huge challenge regarding infrastructure and development. As long as it stays stable, with a strong democracy and gradually improving economic and financial management, then it will stay on track. Its economic results now speak for themselves and the country has much improved economic and financial leadership under the Government of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and its formidable Minister of Finance and Acting Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, Sri Mulyani Indrawati.

If Western leaders could see local Indonesian data on banks and business applied to their own countries, with 2008 growth at 6.3 per cent, low non performing loans in the banking system (around 3 per cent ), US$60 billions cash of foreign reserves, US$10 billion invested abroad and US$60 billions of inward investment, then they would be over the moon. Current newspaper headlines in Indonesia point to plenty of good news in this giant archipelagic country, six hours across on a jumbo jet.

Seen from Jakarta, Indonesia, the ups and downs of Wall Street and Main Street in the United States are a long way away and London, Paris and Berlin are not much nearer. But the cold winds of the Western recession are affecting Indonesian export markets and having some negative impacts on the financial system and the real economy. However there is absolutely no chance of a national recession there.

Although many Southern countries will suffer a downturn most are unlikely to go into national recession, if the economic news in Indonesia is anything to go by. Local news headlines are about declining growth in some sectors and additional risks to be managed. But some companies are doing better because of the worldwide downturn and there is an opportunity to focus on strengthening the economic grass roots here while the West takes two years to recover.

Local front page financial news has been dominated by the stock market crash in the first week of August and the ensuing saga, like a trip-roaring novel on high finance and intrigue, of the renowned Indonesian conglomerate, the Bakrie Group. But Bakrieland is not Indonesia. It’s just a part of the picture but not central to the new fundamentals. Indonesia has a self-generating economy sustained 65 per cent by consumption, and a huge and growing number of SMEs, backed by a large +US$100 billion state budget, and a strengthening tax base.

The stock market crash of the Bakrie Group and its Herculean efforts to sell off a 35 per cent stake of the shares in the Bumi Resources coal company, said to be worth US$1.3 billion, but subject to plummeting share prices in the last month, attracted rival offers from Northstar Equity Partners, a US buyer lined up with local Indonesian State Owned Enterprises, versus an offer from San Miguel Corp, the largest food and beverage conglomerate in the Philippines, which also has heavy clout in Asean and global reach.

This story tended to dominate the Indonesian headlines and the trades on the Stock Exchange. But this will not determine the future of the Indonesian economy.What it tells us about fundamentals is of more importance. Indonesia has substantial resources including huge coal reserves. Indonesia needs US$100 billion of private investment over ten years, half of it for energy. If Indonesia is to continue to grow at between 5 and 6 per cent, or to push the growth rate up to 7 per cent after 2010, then what is needed is less focus on the adventures of a few politically connected oligarchic families who previously dominated the economy, along with the State Owned Enterprises, and more focus on strengthening SMEs in the decentralised provinces, right down to community level, to mobilise the coalition that can put Indonesia into the top ten economies in the world.

Pic from Jakarta Daily.

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It’s Time For RI To Shine: Sri Mulyani

Aditya Suharmoko, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta|Fri, 05/29/2009 11:50 AM|Headlines

The economy will expand 4.3 percent this year, higher than what multilateral agencies estimated, giving the country a chance to gain world recognition for its cushioning of the crisis impact, a minister says.

“It is highly likely the country will record an economic growth of above 4 percent this year,” Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said in an interview Thursday.

“This beats many parties’ predictions that have been pessimistic about Indonesia.”

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecast Indonesia’s economy would grow 2.5 percent this year, while the Asian Development Bank (ADB) predicted a 3.6 percent growth. The government, meanwhile, insists the economy can expand between 4 percent and 4.5 percent in 2009.

“This momentum puts Indonesia in a respectable position as China may score a 6.5 percent growth, followed by a 5 percent growth in India and a 4.3 percent growth in Indonesia. So it is very close, and *the growth* looks very high compared to that in many other countries.”

Indonesia’s economic resilience has made global investment firm Morgan Stanley revise its forecast of Indonesia’s economic growth upward, from 1.9 percent to 3.7 percent, the firm’s economist Deyi Tan said in a report Wednesday, as reported by Bloomberg.

The economy grew 4.4 percent in the first quarter of 2009 from a year earlier, according to the Central Statistics Agency (BPS), as private consumption remained buoyant, offsetting weak exports and investment performance.

Government spending also helped as officials procured goods for the preparation of the legislative elections, which took place in April, said Mulyani.

She is optimistic Indonesia can maintain this momentum throughout the remaining three quarters due to the recent global economic situation – and certain indicators, particularly exports – suggesting the worst of the crisis may have passed.

Mulyani is certain exports, which plunged by around 30 percent in the first three-month period this year from a year earlier, would improve in line with a gradual recovery of the world’s economy.

“Private consumption accounts for 60 percent of our gross domestic product *GDP*; if it goes down even a little bit, it will be reflected in the *economic* growth. What will compensate this is exports,” she said.

“Japan, where exports have dropped by 60 percent, and other countries, where economies have also experienced dramatic drops, have seen signs of bottoming out. This creates hope that the idea of boosting private consumption helps improve the economy,” she added.

Government spending will also continue as some ministries – particularly those with big budget allocations like the Public Works Ministry, the Education Ministry, the Transportations Ministry, the Religious Affairs Ministry and the Agriculture Ministry – have started their procurement process for development projects.

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