Tue, 25 Feb 2003

A common malpractice

I'm referring to the letter from Patrick Schwarz titled Leave workers out of it published in The Jakarta Post on Feb. 20.

It seems the writer of this article is out of his mind and not at all familiar with the current problems the Indonesian export industry is facing.

Corruption, in whatever form, is known to be a common malpractice in all the countries Indonesia is competing with. In some places less, but in other places more (like here).

The main reason for an exodus of foreign investors is a militant and under-performing labor force. Its efficiency and performance is 20 percent to 30 percent below other competing countries.

And this should be rewarded by an increase in minimum wages 2.5 times the already extremely high -- again compared with Indonesia's Southeast Asian competitors -- salary structure?

If this would happen, then it would mean saying good-bye to the Indonesian export industry.

WOLFGANG H. LUFT, Bogor, West Java