Media engagements

List of ANU Indonesia Project’s outreach, advocacy and engagements through Indonesian, Australian and global media.

10 February 2020 - On President Joko Widodo visit to Australia

ABC report on Jokowi’s visit to Canberra

Peter McCawley was interviewed on ABC National TV on Monday 10th following President Joko Widodo’s address to the Australian Parliament.

Topics discussed during the interview included the significance of the President’s visit to Indonesia and the issues that he highlighted during his address to the Australian Parliament. The President had mentioned the importance of social tolerance in Indonesia, and the need to avoid divisions resulting from identity politics. Peter McCawley noted that in choosing to focus on these matters, the President was aiming to remind Australians that the goal of national unity remained a key objective for Indonesian leaders. The President also discussed economic priorities in his address to the Parliament. He stressed the importance of openness as a principle of economic policy in Indonesia, and also the need to promote development. He said that he hoped that Australia and Indonesia could be “development partners” in Southeast Asia.

Commenting on these priorities, Peter noted that both Indonesia and other developing countries are experiencing a remarkable boom in growth. The boom will need to be supported by a rapid expansion in energy supplies. Looking to the future, he said that it will not be easy to reconcile the forecast rapid growth in energy use in Southeast Asia with the need to address global climate change challenges.

7 February 2020 - On economic growth

Jokowi wants Indonesia to be rich by 2045

Link to article

“Broader policy reforms remain elusive, to achieve faster economic growth, alongside addressing urgent environmental challenges and the moderately high inequality that is a feature of democratic Indonesia.

For example, the tax effort is anaemic, meaning that the government cannot provide the goods and services that an aspiring middle-income democracy expects. More so than its ASEAN neighbours, there is also persistent ambivalence about the merits of globalisation, including rising protectionist sentiments in some influential quarters.”

By Hal Hill and Arianto Patunru, Australian Financial Review.

12 January 2020 – On economic reform

The challenge for Jokowi 2.0: how to revitalise the economy

Link to article

“In practically every other area of economic policy, reform is difficult. The state is struggling to lift the performance of local governments, raise taxes to finance its ambitious spending programs, reduce inequality, and open the economy to new commercial opportunities abroad. Nor can it seem to reform the corruption-prone bureaucracy and judiciary, protect workers while creating a more employment-friendly labour market, or improve efficiency in the state enterprise sector.

Indonesia’s recovery from the dark days of the late 1990s was little short of miraculous. But its economy is no longer an ‘East Asian miracle’, as the World Bank characterised it in its seminal 1993 volume.”

By Hal Hill in the East Asia Forum.

29 October 2019 – On corruption

Concerned about the fate of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK), economists sent an open letter to President Jokowi Why did a number of Indonesian economists send an open letter to the Indonesian President? Why is their concern important for Indonesia’s future? What will the economists do if President Jokowi ignores their request? Professor Budy Resosudarmo explains. Professor Budy Resosudarmo talks to SBS Sri Dean about why he co-signed an open letter that Indonesian economists sent to President Jokowi (in the Indonesian language). Listen to the interview.

15 January 2019 – On economic growth

The Indonesian economy: in search of dynamism Indonesia has achieved almost 20 years of continuous economic growth. The country navigated the 2008 global financial crisis with little difficulty and effectively weathered the emerging market volatilities of 2018. It has adjusted to the end of the China-driven commodity boom more effectively than the commodity-exporting members of the now-forgotten BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) group. Professor Hal Hill wrote about the issue.

28 November 2013 – On food policy

Indonesia hungers for better food policy to overturn chronic food insecurity Despite years of reasonable economic growth, 19.4 million Indonesians are still unable to meet their daily dietary needs. The 2017 Global Food Security Index ranks Indonesia 69th out of 113 countries, and its overall score (which is independent of relative country rankings) has barely increased over the past five years. The continuity and severity of this problem indicate that Indonesia is facing chronic food insecurity. Dr. Arianto Patunru and Rainer Heufers elaborate the issue.

28 November 2013 – On trade

Australian trade with Indonesia: what’s really at stake? Indonesia has a population ten times as big as that of Australia, but its per capita income is only one-tenth of Australia’s, so what’s really at risk if the trade relationship between the two countries breaks down? Dr. Arianto Patunru explains.

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