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Time To Clean Up

Efforts to cleanup Indonesia’s waterways of harmful plastic waste have been accelerating recently. This month 8,000 volunteers will assemble at 34 spots along the 110 kilometer Ciliwung River to haul out the garbage. Thousand of tons of plastic bottles and other materials wash up on Indonesia’s beaches every year and [...]

By | 2019-07-24T17:56:08+00:00 July 24th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Election Idul Fitri

Indonesians have begun the mass movement (mudik) that occurs annually at the conclusion of Ramadhan, the holy fasting month. Idul Fitri/Lebaran is a back-to-one’s-roots moment relocating millions out cities to be with their families. Jakarta suddenly becomes a quiet, small town. The holiday’s message of peace, inclusiveness, and forgiveness could not have come at [...]

April Post Election Visit

Commentary by Wayne Forrest I spent 9 days in Indonesia recently, April 20-30, and had very productive meetings in Jakarta and Banda Aceh. The run up to the recent Presidential Election was much hyped by the international media as a serious threat to Indonesia’s pluralist state. To me, it was much ado about nothing. [...]

By | 2019-05-14T14:33:29+00:00 May 14th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Resilient Indonesia/Financial Pulse 2019

                         Kancil Indonesia is like the folktale character Mouse Deer (Kancil) Kancil,  a small “mouse” deer that despite his size outwits crocodiles, tigers, elephants, using his cunning and resourcefulness to survive in a dangerous world. Given that Indonesia is about to have Presidential and Parliamentary elections next month, the topic of the current [...]

By | 2019-05-09T14:34:19+00:00 May 9th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Limits of Hard Infrastructure

The huge promise of the Jokowi Administration’s infrastructure efforts has not yet resulted in lower logistics costs. The rosy future predicted in glossy reports of McKinsey, Citibank, World Bank and others depends in large measure on solving the riddle of high local transportation costs, something that has plagued Indonesia for a long time. Just [...]

By | 2019-03-28T18:46:40+00:00 March 28th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Time For Straighter Talk

Since January 1 the rupiah has strengthened from 15,000 to 14,000, mostly on the heels of announcements from the Fed that it would not be raising the prime rate imminently. With a yawning current account deficit this development was met with a sigh of relief from Indonesia’s economic brain trust. They could certainly use it [...]

By | 2019-02-08T22:09:42+00:00 February 8th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments

2018: A Year of Red Ink

Looking back at 2018 one sees a year many of us might otherwise want to forget; it was a true test of Indonesia’s capacity for resilience. Amid a string of natural and human disasters; an uncertain economic environment involving the country’s major trading partners (EU, China and the US); a yawning current account and [...]

By | 2019-01-07T16:11:28+00:00 January 7th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Wisdom of Yogyakarta

Commentary by Wayne Forrest I recently spent 5 days in NY and Connecticut with the man who would be President of Indonesia. Its not hard to see why Sultan of Yogyakarta examines a puppet at Yale so many Indonesians have backed him in past elections, especially in 1999 after President Suharto’s epic resignation. Although he [...]

By | 2019-01-02T19:36:34+00:00 January 2nd, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Where’s the Transformation ?

Commentary by Wayne Forrest It keeps happening over successive Indonesian presidencies: a transformational figure is elected (Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, Joko Widodo) who appoints transformational ministers, who propose reforms. But, then things bog down. Frustration sets in, or the person leaves the Cabinet. Growth atrophies and the language of discourse remains in the pluperfect tense. [...]

MULTIPLE PERSONALITIES

The principals of 5 US-Indonesia organizations with Vice President Jusuf Kalla and US Ambassador Joseph Donovan Commentary by Wayne Forrest Indonesia seemed to be exhibiting multiple personalities during my visit last week as it simultaneously hosted a major athletic event(Asian Para Olympic Games) and banking event (World bank/IMF Annual Meetings) while organizing [...]