Saturday, December 22, 2007

Skipping Indonesia as Investmen Target?

Recently - well, not so recently - I talked to a friend of mine who is now living in the States. He is an American citizen and a successful businessman. He's now thinking of investing in new regions and at the same time becoming a philanthropist. When I asked him which region he was thinking, he said Africa.

Why Africa? I don't know. Can somebody enlighten me?

In another occasion I met with an investor (originally he started a company and was bought by a larger company - I am not naming name here. :) ). He visited Indonesia and met with me in Bandung. He's been around in the region looking for an investment area. You know what he picked? Vietnam.

In a sense I should be happy that people in Africa and Vietnam are getting investment from abroad, but I am a little sad that not many come to Indonesia. What's wrong with us?

I've been living in North America for quite a while (to know some of the culture - heck, I am a bit westernized in thinking and action) and traveled to parts of the world. I could honestly say that Indonesia is heaven. It's just, things here are just different. If you're not used to, you'll be frustrated. (I know, I did.) But, no parts of the world is perfect.

I've been back in Indonesia for 10 years now. I am enjoying this beautiful place. I am mixing business and pleasure - running IT companies while playing music. Ha ha ha. I want to share this with the rest of the world. Investing here is tough, but is there such an "easy" place to invest? China? India? Africa? Vietnam?

Welcome to Indonesia ...


Tomi Satryatomo said...

When I was in Singapore last month, I accidentally watched a beautiful TV ad with Indonesia as the focus. I thought it were a tourism ad, but it turned out to be the ad from the Investment Coordination Board.

The ad was truly impressive, with beautiful scenes, but when it told the audience about how good the Indonesian infrastructure was, with the scene of empty Semanggi bridge, I could only think about the growing traffic jam all across Jakarta --two hours just to go for two kilometers away-- and the 'small kings' all over the regions who created the so-called 'the decentralization of corruption.'

I admire the effort of the Investment Board to promote Indonesia, but as Indonesian journalist, I know that the ad was merely a beautification of a bitter reality --or a dream.

Best regards

Empty Tetra Pak @ My Desk said...

Nothing new. It's very fundamental. Certainty and risks are the main concerns of investors. Sorry guys, the "yes yes" but Javanese culture of not doing it rightaway (or at all!) would mean uncertainty to business of whatsoever. Thus legal system is still sux here, another uncertainty; this is a risk that cannot be managed nor forecasted accurately. "Yes, yes..." I mean "No, no"?

Investors don't want to put their moneys where there are bigger chance of loosing them instead of doubling them. By all means, most Indonesian cannot speak English. "Yes, yes... err No, no..."