Wayne Forrest

/wayne-forrest2

About wayne-forrest2

Wayne Forrest is President of the American Indonesian Chamber of Commerce, a private not for profit membership organization based in NY.

The January Surprise

On January 12, Indonesia’s mineral export ban came into effect with an unexpected kicker: an export tax on copper concentrates.   As predicted, a last minute compromise allowed them to be exported but soon after it was revealed that the Finance Ministry contradicted the thrust of the exemptions by imposing a graduated export tax that goes [...]

To Ban or Not To Ban

2013 ends a year in which the Indonesian economy made a strong start and sputtered mid year when rumors of an end to the US Fed’s monetary easing, and uncertainty over nationalist trade policy spooked investors.  Policymakers reacted with measures to preserve the rupiah’s value and reign in an advancing current account deficit. Come January [...]

By |January 8th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Structural Reform Anxiety

Its amazing and somewhat anxiety producing to watch both the US and Indonesia democracies struggle over structural reforms.   An inflection point seems to have simultaneously been reached in each country, with each nation's future depending on their implementation.  In America's case its primarily the troubled rollout of a new and improved healthcare system as [...]

APEC and America’s Image

I normally go about my business keeping my American roots a little under wraps.  AICC is after all a bi-national association.  Right before this year’s APEC meetings in Bali (October), there was the third US-Indonesia Commercial Dialog.  Seated opposite from each other around a large square table were roughly 10 CEO’s from each country.   I [...]

By |November 13th, 2013|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Issue to Watch: Rupiah Hits 11,000: Time to Stimulate

Steep declines in the rupiah (it briefly passed 11,000 on Friday) stock index and overall confidence-echoing earlier drops-finally sent enough shivers within the government for the President and his economic team to say "enough is enough".  Bank Indonesia probably knew its interventions could not last for long against strong headwinds.  After a hastily organized meeting [...]

By |August 28th, 2013|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Energy Subdies Reduced

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's government has finally moved to to reduce the ballooning energy subsidies that have absorbed far too much of the State budget for years. In the form of a budget revision, the reduction was approved by Parliament with the President's coalition (Golkar, PAN, PKB, PPP, PD) holding together except for the PKS [...]

Return of Paternalist Capitalism

A commonly held view of Indonesia's recent, more protectionist policy decisions (i.e. mineral export bans, beef and horticulture import restrictions, mining divestment rules) is that they are motivated by populist politics leading to the 2014 election.   Followers of this view say that once the election is over, Indonesian policymaking will somehow shift back to [...]

Political Parties and the Next President of Indonesia

  Political PartiesFor many years I have been a member of Columbia University’s Southeast Asia seminar, a fantastic group of scholars, writers, and a few private sector representatives.  We recently hosted a young scholar from the Australian National University, Marcus Mietzner, who has lived in Indonesia and closely follows the development of political parties.   Mietzner [...]

Outlook for 2013

Indonesia heads into 2013 with continuing questions for foreign companies within an overall atmosphere of solid 6% -6.5% economic growth.  The blemishes --if handled well--will not take away from the rosy complexion.  Those looking for stimulative reforms that would smooth the path for foreign companies may have to wait until the next Administration or look [...]

Heathcare Education For Sale

I recently read a disturbing report that indicates that training for nurses and doctors in Indonesia is for sale.  Admitted medical students are reportedly paying up to $2500 above tuition to gain acceptance with students with low grades paying more.  Once accepted under-performing students are paying to pass their exams.   Other reports indicate that doctors, [...]

By |May 2nd, 2012|Uncategorized|0 Comments