"A Summary" – Apr 2, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Religion, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Intelligent/Benevolent Design, EU, South America, 5 Currencies, Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Middle East, Internet, Israel, Dictators, Palestine, US, Japan (Quake/Tsunami Disasters , People, Society ...), Nuclear Power Revealed, Hydro Power, Geothermal Power, Moon, Financial Institutes (Recession, Realign integrity values ..) , China, North Korea, Global Unity,..... etc.) -

“ … Here is another one. A change in what Human nature will allow for government. "Careful, Kryon, don't talk about politics. You'll get in trouble." I won't get in trouble. I'm going to tell you to watch for leadership that cares about you. "You mean politics is going to change?" It already has. It's beginning. Watch for it. You're going to see a total phase-out of old energy dictatorships eventually. The potential is that you're going to see that before 2013.

They're going to fall over, you know, because the energy of the population will not sustain an old energy leader ..."
"Update on Current Events" – Jul 23, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: The Humanization of God, Gaia, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Benevolent Design, Financial Institutes (Recession, System to Change ...), Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Nuclear Power Revealed, Geothermal Power, Hydro Power, Drinking Water from Seawater, No need for Oil as Much, Middle East in Peace, Persia/Iran Uprising, Muhammad, Israel, DNA, Two Dictators to fall soon, Africa, China, (Old) Souls, Species to go, Whales to Humans, Global Unity,..... etc.)
(Subjects: Who/What is Kryon ?, Egypt Uprising, Iran/Persia Uprising, Peace in Middle East without Israel actively involved, Muhammad, "Conceptual" Youth Revolution, "Conceptual" Managed Business, Internet, Social Media, News Media, Google, Bankers, Global Unity,..... etc.)
.

The headquarters of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) in 
Jakarta. (BeritaSatu Photo)
"The Recalibration of Awareness – Apr 20/21, 2012 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Old Energy, Recalibration Lectures, God / Creator, Religions/Spiritual systems (Catholic Church, Priests/Nun’s, Worship, John Paul Pope, Women in the Church otherwise church will go, Current Pope won’t do it), Middle East, Jews, Governments will change (Internet, Media, Democracies, Dictators, North Korea, Nations voted at once), Integrity (Businesses, Tobacco Companies, Bankers/ Financial Institutes, Pharmaceutical company to collapse), Illuminati (Started in Greece, with Shipping, Financial markets, Stock markets, Pharmaceutical money (fund to build Africa, to develop)), Shift of Human Consciousness, (Old) Souls, Women, Masters to/already come back, Global Unity.... etc.) - (Text version)

… The Shift in Human Nature

You're starting to see integrity change. Awareness recalibrates integrity, and the Human Being who would sit there and take advantage of another Human Being in an old energy would never do it in a new energy. The reason? It will become intuitive, so this is a shift in Human Nature as well, for in the past you have assumed that people take advantage of people first and integrity comes later. That's just ordinary Human nature.

In the past, Human nature expressed within governments worked like this: If you were stronger than the other one, you simply conquered them. If you were strong, it was an invitation to conquer. If you were weak, it was an invitation to be conquered. No one even thought about it. It was the way of things. The bigger you could have your armies, the better they would do when you sent them out to conquer. That's not how you think today. Did you notice?

Any country that thinks this way today will not survive, for humanity has discovered that the world goes far better by putting things together instead of tearing them apart. The new energy puts the weak and strong together in ways that make sense and that have integrity. Take a look at what happened to some of the businesses in this great land (USA). Up to 30 years ago, when you started realizing some of them didn't have integrity, you eliminated them. What happened to the tobacco companies when you realized they were knowingly addicting your children? Today, they still sell their products to less-aware countries, but that will also change.

What did you do a few years ago when you realized that your bankers were actually selling you homes that they knew you couldn't pay for later? They were walking away, smiling greedily, not thinking about the heartbreak that was to follow when a life's dream would be lost. Dear American, you are in a recession. However, this is like when you prune a tree and cut back the branches. When the tree grows back, you've got control and the branches will grow bigger and stronger than they were before, without the greed factor. Then, if you don't like the way it grows back, you'll prune it again! I tell you this because awareness is now in control of big money. It's right before your eyes, what you're doing. But fear often rules. …

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Friday, May 22, 2015

Joko Announces All-Female KPK Selection Committee

Jakarta Globe, Ezra Sihite, Novianti Setuningsih & Erwin Sihombing, May 21, 2015

The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) headquarters in South Jakarta.
(BeritaSatu Photo)

Jakarta. President Joko Widodo announced nine new members of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) selection committee on Thursday, all of whom are women.

“In the past few weeks I have been working hard to form a selection committee for the anti-graft agency [KPK]. Its members have to be competent and possess integrity; they must possess skills and knowledge in a wide range of areas,” Joko said on Thursday.

The president appointed economic analyst, Destry Damayanti, and state administrative legal expert, Enny Nurbayaningsih, as the committee’s head and deputy head respectively.

Other members of the team include Harkristuti Haskrisnowo, a criminal law and human rights expert; Betty Alisjabana, a technology, information and management analyst; Yenti Garnasih, a money laundering and criminal law expert; noted psychologist Supri Wimbarti; Natalia Subagio, the chairwoman of Transparency International Indonesia; as well as Diani Sadiawati, the director of legal human rights at the National Development Planning Agency (Bappenas) and Meuthia Ganie-Rochman, an expert on corruption sociology and social capital.

Joko’s decision to form an all-female selection committee has been welcomed by female activists.

“No one can doubt their [professional] backgrounds; we have a psychologist, an anti-corruption expert, legal experts. They are all great women,” said Ani Soetjipto, a University of Indonesia political lecturer.

The new panel is completely different to potential candidates tipped in the media prior to the announcement — all of whom were males and most of whom were former members of the Independent Consultative Team.

The team was formed by Joko earlier this year to advise him on the then-growing conflict between the KPK and the police, which was sparked after National Police chief candidate, Comr. Gen. Budi Gunawan, was named as a bribery suspect by the KPK.

State Secretary Pratikno said the president chose the selection committee on his own, from 40 candidates proposed to him.

“He read their profiles. It was a long process, taking place for the past couple of weeks, before he finally decided on those names,” Pratikno said, adding it was only a coincidence that the new selectors happened to all be female.

KPK Deputy Chief Johan Budi applauded the president’s choice, saying not only were the members known for their professional integrity, they were also free from political affiliations.

“I see the selected committee as having no affiliation or relation to any political parties,” Johan said. “There will be a lot of political interests and people who will try to interfere in the selection of KPK leaders.

“Therefore we need a selection committee that is credible, capable and free from political interests.”

Chudry Sitompul, a criminology professor at University of Indonesia, echoed Johan’s remarks.

“I think all the nine names presented by President Jokowi are mostly new people. They are not yet contaminated by particular interests,” he said, referring to the president with his popular nickname.

Hifdzil Amil, a researcher at Gadjah Mada University’s anti-graft study center, said he could not be sure if the president had made the right choice.

“I know several names,” he said, adding the public in general were not familiar with the other names.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Basuki Demotes 57 Civil Servants for Poor Performance

Jakarta Globe, Lenny Tristia Tambun, May 18, 2015

Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama has demoted dozens of
bureaucrats for not performing. (GA Photo/Mohammad Defrizal)

Jakarta. Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama has demoted dozens of top Jakarta bureaucrats for failing to perform in their jobs.

A total of 57 officials in echelon 3 and 4 positions have been downgraded to regular staff, the outspoken city leader announced on Monday.

“There are many people down in the hierarchy who wish to go up,” Basuki said. “We want to have competition in governing the city.”

Agus Suradika, chief of Jakarta’s civil service bureau, said most of the demoted civil servants came from the Jakarta Development Planning Agency (Bappeda) and the city’s urban planning office.

The bureaucrats will have a chance to redeem themselves if they show “progress” during an appraisal in three months’ time, Agus said.

“If they don’t get better, we will cut their performance allowance,” Agus said. “They will only receive a basic salary.”

Basuki introduced quarterly performance-based bonuses for civil servants in February, as part of City Hall’s wider push to incentivize bureaucrats to improve their services to the public.

Basuki has made no bones about his displeasure with poorly performing and lazy city bureaucrats, and has repeatedly expressed his intention to recruit more professionals into his team.

The governor on Monday also promoted 196 officials who will now assume high-ranking posts while 452 others are transferred to other similar ranking positions.

“To be honest I would rather fire as many public officials as possible. We are overstaffed and thus not running efficiently. So maybe one day you too will be [downgraded to] regular staffers if you are not diligent, if you don’t raise the bar,” he said to those receiving their promotions.

Basuki said he would continue to solicit input from the lower ranking officials. “So many staffers reported that ‘my boss can’t even use a typewriter.’ Some also say ‘[my boss] only polishes his gemstones all day,’ ” he said.

The governor said he had tried to verify this by assessing their superiors’ performances.

“I asked them, why aren’t you performing well. I got many excuses. [They say] our staff is incompetent. So we let them choose their subordinates,” he said.

“But we will evaluate again in six months. If the evaluation [results] are still appalling then there’s something wrong with the superiors. Then I will be left with no choice but to downgrade them again.”

Related Article:


Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Former N. Sumatran District Chief Jailed in Akil Bribery Case

Jakarta Globe, Erwin Sihombing, May 11, 2015

Raja Bonaran Situmeang becomes the latest regional official to be convicted
of bribing Akil Mochtar, once Indonesia’s top judge, in exchange for a favorable
ruling in an election dispute. (Antara Photo/Akbar Nugroho Gumay)

Jakarta. An Indonesian court on Monday sentenced a former North Sumatra district chief to four years in prison for bribing the country’s top judge in exchange for a favorable ruling in an election dispute.

Judge Muchammad Muchlis of the Jakarta Anti-Corruption Court also fined Raja Bonaran Situmeang, the former head of Central Tapanuli district, Rp 200 million ($15,200) after finding him guilty of paying Rp 1.8 billion in bribes to Akil Mochtar, then the chief justice of the Constitutional Court, to rule in his favor in a dispute arising from the 2012 district election.

The sentence and fine were lower than the six years and Rp 300 million sought by prosecutors. Both sides said they would study the ruling before deciding whether to appeal.

Bonaran becomes the latest regional official to be jailed in the wake of the Akil scandal. The judge himself was convicted in June last year of taking bribes in connection with more than a dozen regional election disputes, and handed an unprecedented life sentence by the Jakarta Anti-Corruption Court — the stiffest sentence ever given in a graft case in Indonesia.

Others jailed in the same case include Ratu Atut Chosiyah, the former governor of Banten province, and Romi Herton, the former mayor of Palembang in South Sumatra, as well as a host of fixers and lawyers.

Saturday, May 09, 2015

Ex-Jambi Education Agency Head Arrested Over Rp 1.5b Graft Allegation

Jakarta Globe, May 08, 2015

The former head of the education office of Jambi City, identified only as R in
 this photo, is a suspect in the alleged corruption in the stationery procurement
of Rp 1.5 billion. (Antara Photo/Wahdi Septiawan)

Jakarta. The Jambi State Prosecutor’s Office on Friday said it had arrested the former head of Jambi City’s education agency over allegations of mismanagement in the stationery procurement budget worth billions of rupiah in 2013.

Karya Graham Hutagaol, chief of the intelligence unit at the Jambi State Prosecutor’s Office, said Rifai had been detained for the next 20 days as part of the investigation process after the State Prosecutor’s Office had compiled enough evidence and questioned 98 witnesses.

“We decided to arrest Rifai as an attempt to prevent the suspect from destroying the evidence and from fleeing,” said Karya.

Rifai, who was named a graft suspect in February, has been accused of corruption to the tune of Rp 1.5 billion ($114,000) in connection to misappropriation of stationery procurement for various schools in the city.

Karya said the project should have been openly auctioned given the large amount of cash, but instead it was divided into 76 packets and then given directly to eight partners that delivered the budget in cash to the schools instead of procured stationery.

Karya added that Rp 1.5 billion was divided in order to avoid an open auction process and that the partners were simply designated as “formality.”

The state prosecutor’s office estimated at least Rp 1 billion in state losses.

According to Karya, Rifai is charged with a 2001 law on anti-corruption and could serve at least five years’ jail time.

Thursday, May 07, 2015

Google Indonesia Wants to Know Your Business and Help You Market It

Jakarta Globe, Tabita Diela, May 07, 2015

A logo is pictured at Google’s European Engineering Center in Zurich,
Switzerland on April 16, 2015. (Reuters Photo/Arnd Wiegmann)

Jakarta. Google Indonesia, the local arm of the global Internet giant, launched on Thursday a free platform called “Google Bisnisku” that will allow small and micro businesses to register and promote their works over the Internet.

The service will let Google to recognize almost every small and medium-size enterprise in Indonesia, offering free services to widen the businesses’ exposure to markets.

“Every kind of business can have the online presence while building its credibility and visibility on the eye of the customers without any charge with Google Bisnisku,” said Mira Sumanti, Google Indonesia’s head of small and micro business.

A recent study by Google and  Ipsos MediaCT, a Paris-based media research firm, fund that business with complete information on the internet can attract 29 percent more customers, Mira said.

Indonesia is home to 56.5 million SMEs with monthly sales between Rp 100 million and Rp 4 billion ($7,700 and $308,000), data from the Cooperative and SME Ministry showed.

A business owner can register with the program simply by logging in to the “Business” section on the Google.com home page. The owner must wait for around two weeks to receive the verification code mailed.

“We need to send it by mail to make sure of the validity and the presence of its owner is such as the address,” Mira said.

After the validation process has been completed, anyone who has registered can then find the business’s name, address, operating hours and phone number at the right side of Google.com’s page. Both customers and the business owner can leave ratings, feedback or comments on the page.

Maulana Cristanto, who owns Locco Gelato, a small ice cream shop in Bumi Serpong Damai City at Tangerang District, is enthusiastic of the new Google facilities. “I’ve been wanting to have my shop on the right side of Google’s search page, just like those big companies do.”

“I hope it will increase awareness about my shop because they can see my shop address right on the first page,” Maulana said.

Right now, search results for “Locco Gelato” only show lists of some blogs, its website and Twitter account.

Google also offers business owner the ability to view simple statistics that might help the business, such as how many people search for their business, how often they look for it, and when is the busiest time at the store.

“We want to introduce hundreds of Indonesia’s local business with the importance of being online,” said Jason Tedjasukmana, Google Indonesia’s head of communications at the press conference on Thursday.

“Small businesses help the economy. We’ve seen how Indonesian economic growth was very slow in the first quarter — 4.71 percent, the weakest since the 4.12 percent pace in the third quarter of 2009. With those small businesses thriving, we might have a chance to grow,” he said.

GlobeAsia

Former Minister Jero Wacik Detained by KPK

Jakarta Globe, May 05, 2015

Former Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Jero Wacik is shown here
 leaving the headquarters of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK)
on July 16, 2014. (Antara Photo/Fanny Octavianus)

Jakarta. Former minister Jero Wacik was detained by the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) on Tuesday, after finally showing up for questioning in two separate graft cases against him.

Jero had appeared nonchalant when he arrived for questioning at the KPK’s headquarters in South Jakarta.

“KPK is summoning me today, and I answer the summons as a cooperative and law-abiding citizen,” Jero told waiting media ahead of the grilling.

But later in the day he was escorted out of the building wearing an orange detainee vest.

Jero skipped the first three KPK interview requests on the grounds that he had submitted a pretrial motion challenging his corruption status.

However, that was rejected by South Jakarta District Court Judge Sihar Purba last week.

Jero has been accused of abusing his executive power at the Tourism Ministry (2004-09), causing some Rp 7 billion ($539,000) in state losses according to KPK estimates.

He has also been accused of extortion while serving as the energy minister (2011-14). KPK prosecutors allege that Jero has illegally pocketed Rp 10 billion during the latter term.

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

US Companies Eying More Than $1b Investment in Indonesia

Jakarta Globe, Arientha Primanita, May 04, 2015

Workers clean the windows of an office building in Central Jakarta on
April 23, 2015. (Antara Photo/Andika Wahyu)

Jakarta. A delegation of top executives from 10 major US companies arrived in Jakarta on Monday, as they seek to forge stronger business relationships in Indonesia and are collectively considering more than $1 billion in new investment over the next three to five years.

US-Asean Business council, the organizer of the visit, said in a statement on Monday that the envoy is scheduled to meet government officials and business leaders in Indonesia — including President Joko Widodo; the Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Sofyan Djlail; and chairman of the Indonesian Investment Coordination Board (BKPM) Franky Sibarani.

They are also scheduled to meet Lim Hong Hin deputy secretary general if the Association of the Southeast Asian Nations; the chairman of the Indonesian Employers Association (Apindo), Hariyadi Sukamdani; and senior leaders of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce (Kadin).

The delegation includes companies from Ace Group, Cigna, the Coca-Cola Company, DuPont, Intel, Medtronic, Monsanto, and Procter & Gamble, of which all have a business presence in Indonesia.

“The companies on the delegation have substantial investments in Indonesia which support millions of jobs, and are collectively planning or considering more than $1 billion in new investment in the next 3-5 years,” US-Asean Business council said in the statement.

Most of the US investment in Indonesia has been from large oil and gas exploration firms such as Chevron and ExxonMobil, and diversity of investment into other sectors from US companies in the Indonesian economy has been small by comparison.

March Mealy, vice president for Policy at the US-Asean Business Council, praised Joko’s administration for its impressive slate of economic reform achievements in the first semester since taking office.

He said Joko’s economic policies — such as the fuel subsidy reduction; a one-stop shop for licensing launched in January; and the revised State Budget for 2015 that gave room for more infrastructure and social spending — made notable differences in the business environment.

“We look forward to continuing to work together on other key issue areas to enhance the domestic business environment and unleash Indonesia’s full trade and investment potential,” Mealy said in the statement.

Prakash Mallya, managing director for Southeast Asia at Intel, said the company believes that technology is the great equalizer leading to positive impacts for businesses, people and society.

“As Indonesia embarks its journey on a new economic frontier, Intel together with US-Asean Business Council is committed to accelerate key government programs on e-education, e-government, e-health, e-logistic, e-procurement as well as overall implementation of National Broadband Plan,” he said.

The companies of the US-Asean Business Council also gave their support for regional integration through the Asean Economic Community set to launch at the end of this year.

Patrick Graham, chief executive officer of the Asia-Pacific region for insurance company Cigna, said that companies are willing to enable greater regional connectivity and integration to build sustainable business, communities and governments that meet the challenging needs and opportunities present in the region.

“I am confident that this Mission will bring to the forefront the key priorities of the private sector to key leaders in the region and set the stage for even more fruitful partnerships and engagement in years to come,” Graham said

GlobeAsia

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Govt Starts Distribution of Social Benefit Cards

Jakarta Globe, Novy Lumanauw, Apr 28, 2015

President Joko Widodo, center, distributes the Indonesia Health Card (KIS) to
workers at a rubber plantation in North Sumatra. (Antara Foto/Septianda Perdana)

Jakarta. Tens of millions of disadvantaged Indonesians will start receiving the government’s much-touted Indonesia Health Card (KIS) and Indonesia Smart Card (KIP) from this week — months after the flagship social benefit programs were officially unveiled.

The government says the cards will improve Indonesians’ access to education and health services, and it aims to distribute them to more than 100 million people.

A total of 88.2 million people will receive the KIS card, which provides the nation’s poor and near-poor with access to healthcare.

Card holders will be entitled to treatment at public primary care clinics (puskesmas) and treatment in third-class hospitals. Benefits provided under the health card will be managed by the Social Security Agency (BPJS) but funded by insurance premiums of Rp 19,225 ($1.60) per person — paid by the Ministry of Health.

Meanwhile, 20.3 million people will be provided with the KIP card, which entitles students from underprivileged families to 12 years’ free education, as well as education resources and free higher education provided they pass university entrance exams.

Workers at a rubber plantation in North Sumatra were the first to get their hands on the KIS cards on April 18, but the government started national distribution on Tuesday.

Distribution of the cards, a campaign promise of President Joko Widodo, was slated for late 2014, but budget wrangling that was only resolved in January pushed the schedule back.

“We’ll start distributing the cards this week,” Joko said on Tuesday after disbursing 3,289 KIS cards to employees of state-owned shipping and dock company, Dok & Perkapalan Kodja Bahari, in North Jakarta.

The cards are similar to the Jakarta Health Card (KJS) and Jakarta Smart Card (JKP) implemented when Joko was governor of the capital,

Related Article:


IMF Debt Confounds Govt Officials, SBY

Bank Indonesia, the country’s central bank, was forced to release a statement clarifying the status of the debts


Democratic Party chairman Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, center, accompanied by
 his wife Ani Yudhoyono, right, and Syarif Hasan, left, are seen together after
attending a consolidation meeting of the Democratic Party's Jakarta branch
on Nov. 28, 2014. (Antara Photo/Wahidin)

Jakarta. Bank Indonesia, the country’s central bank, has weighed in on a public debate on Tuesday over Indonesia’s debts to the International Monetary Fund following misunderstanding of international accounting between President Joko Widodo’s aides and political rivals.

A $9.1 billion debt created by Indonesia to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during the Asian financial crisis in 1998 was paid off by the government in 2006, Bank Indonesia said on its official Twitter account on Tuesday.

Still, the central bank records a liability to the Fund of $2.8 billion in its balance as of the end of April, which reflects an allocation of the country’s special drawing rights (SDR).

“It is a consequence for us being an IMF member,” Bank Indonesia said.

Bank Indonesia drew SDR in early 2009 in order to boost its foreign exchange reserves to shield the country’s financial sector from the global financial crisis. IMF members are entitled to certain allocations of SDR in their reserves based on their economy’s size.

The countries can then trade SDR for hard currency with other members. SDR is not a currency and its value is determined against a basket of key international currencies — the euro, Japanese yen, pound sterling and US dollar. As of Tuesday, 1 SDR is equivalent to $1.39, according to the IMF’s website.

Still, such monetary issues might be difficult to comprehend for some of Indonesia’s politicians, who erupted in debate through national media.

Former president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono was lambasted for making false claims when he criticized his successor over Indonesia’s debt to the IMF.
In a series of tweets, Yudhoyono criticized Joko’s remarks made during last week’s Asian-African Conference during which the current president called for new global order.

Joko criticized global financial institutions — namely the IMF, Word Bank and the Asian Development Bank — for failing to accommodate the shift in economic power to emerging countries. The speech did not go well with Yudhoyono.

“Bottom line is Jokowi said Indonesia is still borrowing money from the IMF,” Yudhoyono tweeted late on Monday, referring to the president by his popular nickname.
“I must say Jokowi’s statement is false. Indonesia has paid all of its debt to the IMF in 2006,” he continued, crediting his own administration for the payment.

“Since 2006, Indonesia is no longer IMF’s patient. No longer dictated by the IMF. We are free to design our own economic development.”

Some officials and activists, though, dismissed Yudhoyono’s statements, saying that after Indonesia paid off its debt to the IMF in 2006, Yudhoyono’s administration again borrowed $3.09 billion from the same institution in 2009.

Joko’s Cabinet Secretary Minister Andi Widjajanto said on Tuesday that the 2009 loan was to increase Indonesia’s central bank reserves. “It is not a fiscal debt which we can use for development,” he said.

Scenaider Siahaan, a director at Indonesia’s Debt Office Management confirmed that Indonesia still has debt outstanding with the IMF, but added that it was proposed by Bank Indonesia, an independent body not under the auspices of the president.

Finance Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro said the fund is a standby loan that Indonesia never used. “Anytime [Indonesia] wishes to use it we can. But, because the fund originates from the IMF, we call it a loan,” he said, adding that so far Indonesia has yet to pay any interest on the SDR allocation.

A country would only pay interest should its SDR holding be lower than its allocation, according to IMF website. Conversely, the country gains interest from holding SDR higher than its allocation.

In his speech to delegates at the Asian-African Conference in Jakarta, Joko challenged Western-based institutions saying that the notions that only they can solve global economic problems “are obsolete views that need to be discarded.”

Several of the countries that participated in the original Bandung Conference 60 years ago are today among the biggest and fastest-growing economies in the world, including China, India and host Indonesia. But the so-called Bretton Woods global financial institutions set up after World War II continue to be dominated by rich Western countries. The US, for example, holds a 16.5 percent stake in the IMF with veto powers.

GlobeAsia

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Indonesia Sets Second Tax Amnesty Program for April 29

The directorate general of tax set to launch the second sunset policy tax program
 by the end of this month as a way to help reach 2015’s tax revenue target.
Antara Photo/Zabur Karuru)

Jakarta. Indonesia’s directorate general of tax is set to launch its second tax amnesty program on April 29, as a way to help reach the government’s tax revenue target of Rp 1,249.3 trillion ($92 billion) for 2015.

This policy allows corporate and individual taxpayers to pay and report back taxes without penalty or interest charges for up to one year from the start of the amnesty date.


President Joko Widodo will set the policy on April 29, a day before the deadline for companies to report taxes. The tax office will start taking in back taxes in May.

This is the second so-called sunset policy — for either voluntary or mandatory program — after the first one in 2008 helped increase tax revenue by about a third to a total of Rp 566 trillion ($44 billion).

“I can’t predict this year’s tax revenue, but there was a 30 percent growth in 2008, and I hope that it can grow by over 30 percent this year,” director general of taxation Sigit Priadi Pramudito said on Thursday.

Beijing encourages more companies to build Indonesia's infrastructure

Want China Times, Xinhua 2015-04-24

Xi Jinping shakes hands with Indonesian finance minister Bambang
Brodjonegoro at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Jakarta, April 21.
(Photo/Xinhua)

President Xi Jinping in China said on Wednesday that Beijing will encourage more companies to participate in infrastructure construction and operations in Indonesia.

Xi made the remarks when meeting with Indonesian president Joko Widodo in Jakarta during the two-day Asian-African leaders' meeting held here. He also promised to encourage more Chinese citizens to travel to Indonesia.

Widodo welcomed Xi's proposal to increase investment in Indonesia's infrastructure. The two presidents witnessed the signing of cooperation documents for a high-speed rail project after the meeting

Noting that this year marks the 60th anniversary of the Bandung Conference, Xi said the conference is of epoch-making significance and he is willing to work with Widodo to inherit and carry forward the Bandung Spirit, and strengthen solidarity, friendship and cooperation among developing countries.

Stressing that this year also marks 65th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Indonesia, Xi said following Widodo's successful visit to China last month, the two countries should work together to translate the consensus reached into tangible results.

China and Indonesia should maintain the good momentum of close communication at all levels to step up the implementation of agreements already reached between the two countries, he said.

He urged the two countries to achieve trade balance through a comprehensive approach and well implemented bilateral currency swap agreement.

China will continue to support the building of ASEAN community, he said, pledging that China will support ASEAN to play a leading role in the regional cooperation of Southeast Asia.

Widodo welcomed Xi to attend the Asian-African summit and the 60th anniversary of the Bandung Conference in Indonesia.

He said Indonesia hopes to expand cooperation with China in various fields and is willing to discuss the opportunities for cooperation brought by China's "21st Century Maritime Silk Road" initiative and Indonesia's new development strategy.

The Asian-African leaders' meeting opened here Wednesday with the aim of carrying on the Bandung Spirit and promoting common development of the two vibrant continents.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

China Minsheng to Lead Chinese Firms’ Investment of $5b in Indonesia

JakartaGlobe, Muhamad Al Azhari, Apr 21, 2015

A crane at work at Jakarta International Cointainer Terminal (JICT) in Tanjung
Priok, Jakarta, on March 23, 2015. (Antara Photo/Wahyu Putro A.)

Jakarta. Investment fund China Minsheng Investment said on Tuesday that it will lead a group of Chinese private companies to invest $5 billion in Indonesia.

“This investment is a clear demonstration of CMI’s commitment to support China and Indonesia’s existing international agenda on overcoming economic challenges and providing investment for growth,” the company said in a statement to GlobeAsia on Tuesday.

Li Huaizhen, chief executive of CMI, joined the delegation to Indonesia as one of the major representatives of China’s private enterprises to further discuss strategic plans for investment via the Asian-African Business Summit, which started in Jakarta on Tuesday as part of the Asian-African Conference.

CMI said in the statement that it will guide dozens of leading private enterprises to construct industrial parks, which will bring in a variety of industries and sectors to the Indonesian market. That will help companies from China as well as from Indonesia and abroad to establish businesses with interests that include coal, chemicals, iron and steel, power generation, cement, infrastructure, ports and the Internet.

CMI also said in the statement that it will bring its technology, managerial know-how, capital and talent to Indonesia.

GlobeAsia

Indonesia Woos African Business

Jakarta Globe, Arientha Primanita & Leonard Cahyoputra, Apr 21, 2015

Flags from Asian and African countries are hoisted on a main street in Jakarta on
 April 14, 2015 in preparation for the 60th anniversary of the Asian-African Conference
 in Indonesia taking place between April 22-24, 2015, which leaders from Asian and
African countries are attending. (AFP Photo /Bay Ismoyo)

Jakarta. Indonesia has called on countries in Asia and Africa to strengthen economic ties and fulfill the massive trade potential between the two continents.

Franky Sibarani, the chairman of Indonesia’s Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM), said on Tuesday that emerging economies, mostly in Asia and Africa, received more than $700 billion in foreign direct investment last year, or 56 percent of the total global investment, citing data from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development’s (UNCTAD) 2014 World Investment report.

He said this was a remarkable achievement, given that global investment flows declined 8 percent last year compared to the year before. He also quoted Financial Times data that showed total direct investment among Asia and Africa countries only reached 35 percent of total global investment.

“With this big potential, Asian and African countries can explore available opportunities and create beneficial cooperation,” Franky said at the Asian-African Business Summit in Jakarta, part of the 60th anniversary commemoration of the Asian-African Conference, taking place in Jakarta and Bandung this week.

“Therefore, let us all take advantage of this good momentum to strengthen the economic cooperation in investments between Asian and African countries.”

Some 600 local and foreign business leaders attended Tuesday’s summit, which was hosted by Indonesian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Kadin).

Investments in Indonesia from Asian and African countries between 2010 and 2014 amounted to $58.58 billion, according to BKPM figures, with Asian countries accounting for $55.56 billion.

The main investments from African countries came in the sectors of food, agriculture, tourism and construction, while investments from Asia included transportation, telecommunications, food, agriculture, metals, machinery and electronics. Most foreign investment in Indonesia was concentrated in Java.

Franky said Indonesia’s government was committed to creating a climate that was conducive to foreign investment. He said the government was exploring ways to get investors to participate in a host of development projects, particularly infrastructure and manufacturing.

“The BKPM is ready to facilitate Asia and Africa investors to realize their investments in Indonesia,” he said.
The government launched in January a “one-stop” platform meant to help investors acquire business permits, and is working on improvements in other sectors to boost investments.

Meanwhile, Kadin chairman Suryo Bambang Sulisto said Tuesday’s summit was also a chance for Indonesian businesses to gain greater knowledge about Africa’s largely untapped market potential.

He said the trade balance between Asia and Africa over the past 20 years had increased 100 times to $200 billion. “We expect it will reach $1 trillion by 2020,” Suryo said, adding that investors would look to do business with African countries that were “free of conflict.”

“There are some stable countries in Africa. Besides South Africa,” — rocked in recent days by violent xenophobic attacks — “other potential countries are Nigeria” — where the militant Islamic group Boko Haram has taken over entire towns and sent the military on the run — “and Egypt,” whose military in 2013 overthrew the democratically elected president in a coup.

GlobeAsia

Monday, April 20, 2015

From Aceh to Papua: Jokowi’s Infrastructure Visions


Cyclists crossing the Kelok 9 flyover in Payakumbuh, West Sumatra on
 July 3, 2013. GlobeAsia Both local and international investors have turned
 their attention to President Joko Widodo’s ambitious plans. (JG Photo/Afriadi Hikmal)

The building of infrastructure in Indonesia is the key to understanding the extent of progress in the country.

During the World Economic Forum on East Asia, a question will be asked: Is Indonesia doing enough to show the public and investors they can trust that infrastructure development is moving ahead toward growth and becoming competitive in the region.

Indonesia, meanwhile, has been given the opportunity to showcase development and attract investment while playing host to the WEF event.

The administration of President Joko Widodo has set an infrastructure target, to be achieved by 2019, in which 24 seaports, 15 airports, power plants with a capacity of 35,000 megawatts and nine million hectares of agriculture land will be developed.

This was reiterated by WEF Indonesia committee member and Trade Minister Rachmat Gobel in a recent briefing to ambassadors and prominent business leaders.

The administration is confident in its programs to build dams, toll roads and railways to boost the local economy and raise the living standards of local communities.

Joko traveled to Aceh in March to inaugurate a number of projects in the area.

In North Aceh, he presided over the groundbreaking of the Keureuto dam — the largest to be built this year and expected to increase agricultural output in the region.

The construction of the dam will allow the irrigation of other regions which are in a deficit of rice production.

The dam is being built by state-owned construction companies Brantas Abipraya, Hutama Karya and Wijaya Karya.

It will hold 167 million cubic meters of water and irrigate 4,768 hectares of agricultural land. The reservoir will also prevent flooding in the downstream region.

Joko then moved on to Sabang, Indonesia’s most western tip, where he jump-started the construction of the Seunara reservoir, which has been stalled for more than nine years due to land clearance issues.

The issue was eventually solved as Joko negotiated with over 200 local residents who had been holding out for a larger compensation package.

“After talking to the residents, they have no problem. We have the budget, what’s important is the reservoir will be completed this year and function,” said Joko, who was accompanied by Aceh Governor Abdullah Zaini and Public Works and Housing Minister Basuki Hadimulyono.

The reservoir will provide water and help the local community boost income through the development of water tourism and aquaculture.

Veteran infrastructure expert Scott Younger says the president’s move to resolve the stalled Seunara project provides encouragement.

“He has quickly recognized the serious issue of lack of water storage across the country and acted on it. It is also positive that he has inaugurated the long-defined Keureuto project.

“With this early action it would seem that the president will certainly be trying to meet the target of 13 dam projects for this year,” Younger said.

But, he says, the longer-term concern is the lack of engineering and construction industry capacity to carry out all the work planned in the administration’s term, not just in water storage but across the infrastructure space as a whole.

Undaunted, the president pressed on to Lhokseumawe, the home of Kertas Kraft Aceh.

The company stopped production years ago, but the president has voiced he would like to see it running again as to contribute to the local economy.

“For more than 15 years I have wanted the company to be in operation again. There is adequate supply of raw materials from the forests which can be managed by the local people.

“We can plant fast-growing sub-tropical trees such as albizia or pine and we don’t have to wait 15, 20 or 30 years,” he said.

The president is no stranger to Aceh. He spent his early working years there and his first child was born in the province.

“Ibu Jokowi and I are very familiar with Aceh,” he said.

In Arun, just north of Lhokseumawe, the president launched the Arun regasification and storage terminal, marking a milestone in the country’s efforts to shift its energy consumption toward gas.

The plant sits on the now-depleted wells of Indonesia’s first natural gas resource, now run by Perta Arun Gas, a subsidiary of state-owned Pertamina Gas.

“The facility will regasify LNG sent from Kilang Tangguh in Papua,” Pertamina Gas president director Hendra Jaya explained, adding that the plant will provide the state electricity company with gas to power its generators in Belawan, Medan.

Joko’s initiative in Aceh marks a significant move in the nation’s infrastructure building, no president before him has had a similar strategy.

Dams and roads

This year, the administration is at work building at least 13 of the projected 49 dams it wants to construct over the next five years. The cost of the 13 dams will be at least Rp 12 trillion ($934 million), excluding land-clearance costs. The projects will be funded by the state budget.

Rising transportation and logistics costs have also won the attention of the government.

Many toll roads are to be constructed and work on the 2,700-kilometer Trans-Sumatra toll road, which will link Aceh and Lampung, is due to start this month.

The government has assigned Hutama Karya to undertake the project, as it is the only large state infrastructure firm not listed on the stock exchange.

Construction of the road has been estimated to cost Rp 300 trillion, with the government asking other state enterprises and local governments to cooperate without reservation.

The first stage of the project is to build 1,300 kilometers of road. Hutama Karya has been given an additional injection of funds by the government to get the job done.

Earlier Hutama Karya and other state enterprises, including banks, were ready to finance the project without relying on the state budget but the government deemed it would create too much of a burden.

During the previous administration of president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, the project was also to be managed by Hutama Kaya. The project proved difficult to get started due to financial concerns with investors reluctant to commit to such a long-term project.

The focus then turned to building the Medan-Binjai toll road, but that plan has also changed, with the focus now on the link between Bakaheuni in Lampung and Palembang, the capital of South Sumatra.

The April ground-breaking date was chosen at a limited cabinet session presided over by Joko, Vice President Jusuf Kalla, Public Works Minister Basuki Hadimulyono, State-owned Enterprises Minister Rini M. Soemarno and Finance Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro.

An important part of the decision was the revision of the previous presidential decree number 100/2014 which put an emphasis on land acquisition as a priority.

In a recent development, Rini revealed that four state enterprises — Hutama Karya, Jasa Marga, Waskita Karya and Wijaya Karya — will be tasked to jointly commission the project.

“The project will be done in sections. For instance Waskita Karya will do section 1, Wijaya Karya section 2 and so forth, Part of it will hopefully be completed in 2018,” she said, adding that some sections of the road will be commissioned by local governments involving the private sector.

Railway development

Following Joko’s pledge last year to develop railways in Papua, the Transportation Ministry will allocate at least Rp 105.6 trillion over the next five years to build railway networks beyond Java.

“We have evaluated the budget needs of the Directorate General of Railways at the ministry for the next five years and according to the new master plan pushed by the president, completion of the project is slated for 2019,” Director General for Railways Hermanto Dwiatmoko said.

In business terms, railway development beyond Java can be complex because of feasibility and financing, and as a result funding for railway development has to come either from the state budget or through public-private partnership, he said.

The plan may appear ambitious but Hermanto insisted that the project will begin in 2016.

It will contribute to what will become a total national railway network stretching 3,258 kilometers and be the longest railway project since the Dutch occupation of Indonesia.

Meanwhile, a feasibility study for the construction of the Trans Papua Railway has already begun. The new railway track will span 595 kilometers connecting Sorong and Jayapura.

Home Affairs Minister Tjahjo Kumolo said that development outside Java is one of the president’s priorities.

“There are many regions and border areas which are still untouched by infrastructure development.

“The president is committed to developing the eastern part of Indonesia where infrastructure is less developed.

“We at the Ministry of Home Affairs have reached a consensus with the Ministry of Public Works to support and develop infrastructure mainly in Papua, East Nusa Tenggara and the Kalimantan border areas,” he said.

House Commission V members who have visited Papua to see the prospective railway plan say they back the government’s initiative.

They have also encouraged the people of Papua to support it.

At the local level, regional officials have discussed the railway project with the central government but still have questions about the source of finance.

“We will have certainty on that in one or two months,” said regional secretary Ella Loupatty.

“We think that the project will begin from Sorong in West Papua and connect the Sarmi district in Papua province. If the project is realized, the distribution of goods will be easier and prices will go down in many areas.”

Hermanto added that he had asked regional officials to help in the process of land clearance, which poses one of the major hurdles to any infrastructure project.

He believes it is feasible to complete the Papua railway project within five years.

“We expect the project to be expedited although we note that any infrastructure development in Papua is not easy. But, we can’t delay it,” he said.

Higher commodity prices

Without the development of better infrastructure in the area, the price of cement could go as high as Rp 2 million for a 50 kilogram sack, while basic commodities such as sugar could cost between Rp 15,000 and Rp 50,000 a kilogram, many times over the price for such staples on Java.

Commenting on the rail plans, Younger, the infrastructure expert, says the target dates are highly optimistic.

“While railways must be part of the transportation infrastructure build-out, an emphasis for off-Java railway construction seems difficult to reconcile,” he says.

“There is still much to do in rail in Java and especially around the main urban centers, such as Jakarta and for fast rail links between the major cities. Railways make sense when there are many people and/or a large volume of commodities to transport.

“Java and off-Java highly-populated centers, such as Medan, fill the first criterion and off-Java in certain specific locations for the movement of commodities.”

And, he adds, the public-private partnership concept has been around for more than a decade, but a workable model is still to be found.

More needs to be done to encourage private investment.

Meanwhile, a number of countries in the East Asia region such as Singapore, Japan, and China have expressed interest to invest power plants projects in Indonesia, according to the Investment Coordination Board (BKPM).

The BKPM has received 12 new applications for investment permits from foreign investors to build power plants worth $8.9 billion, or around Rp 116 trillion.

It’s not just foreign investors looking towards Indonesian infrastructure — many domestic investors are interested as well.

BKPM chairman Franky Sibarani said that his office has also received applications for investment permits from 17 local investors.

GlobeAsia and the Jakarta Globe are media partners of the World Economic Forum on East Asia. Parts of this article originally appeared in the April issue of GlobeAsia.

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