Mon, 29 Aug 1994

Indonesia, U.S. to hold trade and investment meeting

JAKARTA (JP): The first annual United States-Indonesia Trade and Investment Conference here next week will discuss efforts to increase trade and investment relations between the two countries.

Louis A. Clinton, the president of the Indonesian office of the American Chamber of Commerce (Amcham), told reporters here over the weekend that the conference will assemble the region's business leaders and key Indonesian government officials at the Grand Hyatt Hotel on Sept. 6 and Sept. 7 to discuss how to capitalize on and promote the investment potential of the region.

The conference is organized by Amcham Indonesia, in cooperation with the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin).

Clinton said that speakers at the conference will include Coordinating Minister for Industry and Trade Hartarto, U.S. Ambassador Robert Barry, State Minister of Investment Sanyoto Sastrowardoyo, Chairman of Kadin Aburizal Bakrie, as well as various other officials and business leaders from Indonesia and the United States.

Clinton, who is also the vice chairman of PT Freeport Indonesia, said the conference will concentrate on how small and medium sized enterprises can participate in Indonesia's economic development in association and partnership with large Indonesian and American companies.

He said that Indonesia is one of the most competitive countries for foreign investment.


Husein Aminuddin, a vice chairman of Kadin, said that the conference is expected to attract around 200 participants, half of them are expected to represent American companies.

About 58 American companies have been registered to participate in the conference, he said.

In addition to the scheduled speeches, the conference will also break into working groups categorized by industrial sectors, including the machinery and metal industry, telecommunications, transportation, the food processing and agricultural industries, banking and financial services, as well as the medium and small scale enterprise sector.

According to data at the Investment Coordinating Board, U.S. direct investments approved by the Indonesian government for non- oil and non-financial businesses sharply declined from US$922.5 million in 1992 to $445.3 million last year.

With the cumulative investments of $3.7 billion as of January, the United States ranks fifth among foreign investing countries after Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore.

Indonesian exports to the United States increased to $5.2 billion last year from $4.3 billion in 1992, while Indonesian imports from the United States decreased to $3.2 billion from $3.8 billion. (05)