Tue, 02 Aug 1994

Country tour seen effective for international promotion

JAKARTA (JP): The recent on-the-road tour of a government delegation to several international business centers gained positive and warm welcomes from international businesspersons, Minister of Finance Mar'ie Muhammad says.

"The first country road show was very beneficial for promoting the Indonesian economic development among international businesses," he told reporters after meeting with President Soeharto at the Bina Graha here yesterday.

Mar'ie said the effectiveness of the tour was proven with so many questions about rules and regulations for investment in Indonesia, including one on when Indonesia lifts the current 49 percent limit on foreign ownership of shares listed on the capital market.

The minister recently led a group of Indonesian delegates on a two week on-the-road tour to London, New York, Boston and Hong Kong to promote investment potentials in Indonesia in meetings with international fund managers and investors.

Mar'ie said the tour was meant to publicize Government Regulation PP No. 20/1994, which allows foreigners to control the whole equity of investment projects in the first years of operation and to build and operate infrastructure facilities, including ports, airports and roads.

He said the tour provided information to foreign businesspersons and investors about the privatization programs of state-owned companies and wider access for long term investment through foreign direct investments or joint ventures.


Mar'ie said with the possible increasing allocation of foreign investors' assets here, the tour was also expected to stimulate foreign indirect investment to enter domestic capital market.

"We need to put such a tour into our annual program because we got a strong impression from our discussions with several international businessmen that their understanding on Indonesia is still limited," Mar'ie said.

In London, Mar'ie held a meeting with Britain's ministers of finance and trade to discuss increasing economic and financial relationships between Indonesia and Britain.

In the United States, besides discussing the same topics with the U.S. minister of finance, he also discussed the follow-up of the recent Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) ministerial meeting in Hawaii and preparations for the next meeting in Indonesia in November.

Mar'ie said the delegates had an intensive meeting with U.S. businesspersons about Indonesia's investment rules and economic outlooks.

Mar'ie said he also attended a ministerial meeting of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which discussed the importance of increasing the role of IMF and the World Bank in stabilizing the world's monetary system and currency exchange rates, which currently depend mostly on the Group of Seven (G-7) industrial countries.

The meeting also discussed improving the private sector as a catalyst for economic development, he said. (02)