Investment Initiative Gets Government and Business Talking
AmCham and Paramadina Public Policy Institute host two-day focus group gathering to forge policy recommendations for 2015 US-Indonesia investment report
By AmCham Correspondent
Thursday, September 10, 2015
AmCham continued its year-long US-Indonesia Investment Initiative in August, holding a two-day series of focus group discussions (FGD) as part of research for the 2015 Investment Initiative report, which will be released in October.
In order to create more realistic policy recommendations, the FGD, hosted in conjunction with Paramadina Public Policy Institute and held in Jakarta August 18-19, involved companies that are part of the Initiative and government officials. The objective of inviting government officials was also for them to hear first-hand the companies’ concerns on policies toward foreign investment.
The sectors discussed were information and communication technology, extractive and energy, banking and finance, the creative economy, heavy industry/technology/infrastructure and consumer goods.
The member companies were represented by MasterCard, HM Sampoerna, 3M, Cargill, Fluor, Disney, ConocoPhillips, Freeport and AIG.
From the government side, there were representatives from the Indonesia Investment Coordinating Board and the ministries of energy, agriculture, home affairs, trade, public works and finance. The office of the Directorate General of Tax, the National Agency of Food and Drug Control, Bank Indonesia, the National Exploration Committee and the National Creative Economy Agency were also represented.
There was more common ground than conflict as working-level issues were discussed. At the conclusion of the two-day event both government officials and US investors agreed they have a shared interest in attracting more foreign investment to help the country achieve its growth targets. In some cases, of course, the two sides differed on the best way to spur greater investment.
Throughout the Investment Initiative process, which will culminate with an Investment Summit event in Washington, DC timed to the planned visit of President Joko Widodo in October, AmCham has sought numerous opportunities for companies and government to share views and look for common ground. The FGD deepened that engagement by bringing in some agencies that are indirectly rather than directly involved in investment policy.