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Showing posts from 2010

Indonesia's Middle Class Comes of Age

From FT.com

Dini Shanti, a web marketer, struggled for years to pay the rent and put food on the table for her two children.

Yet in the past 24 months she has moved into a new home, bought her retired father a car and begun paying into investment funds and a life assurance policy.

Her rapid climb to financial security was, until recently, a rare story in Indonesia, a young democracy of nearly 240m people and one of Asia’s fastest-growing economies. But in the coming decade, more than 60m low-income workers are poised to join her in what will be the coming of age of Indonesia’s middle class.

That projected boom will also make Indonesia - already a member of the Group of 20 nations and the largest south-east Asian economy - the fastest-growing consumer market after India and China. Big retailers, banks, carmakers, insurers and consumer goods producers are tapping the growth, posting record profits this year.

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President Obama’s Visit to Indonesia: Putting the Country on the Map

From Brookings.edu

President Obama’s visit to Indonesia is not only personal but political. He will have the opportunity to visit the home where he lived as a young boy and the primary school he attended and learned the local language. None of the other 43 American presidents have had this kind of exposure to a non-Western country. One of the president’s political objectives for this trip is to raise Indonesia’s global profile. Many Americans underestimate the significance of Indonesia—often described as the most important country in the world that people know the least about. With 230 million inhabitants, it is the fourth most populous nation after China, India, and the United States. Eleven years ago, it began an impressive transition from 30 years of authoritarian rule by former President Soeharto to become arguably the most democratic country in all of East and Southeast Asia. What makes the transition all the more remarkable is that about 85 percent of Indonesia’s citiz…

Indonesia’s GDP beats forecasts

From FT.com

Indonesia on Wednesday announced better than expected figures for 2009 growth in gross domestic product, making it one of the fastest growing economies in the G20 group of nations. Indonesia posted 4.5 per cent annual GDP growth for 2009, down from 6.1 per cent in 2008. Fourth-quarter growth was 5.4 per cent year-on-year, the fastest level since the third quarter of 2008. The economy has held convincingly on to positive ground throughout the financial crisis and seen growth accelerate in the fourth quarter.
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