Get with the program: Yesterday Morgan Stanley came out and declared that the Rupiah is; well, oversold to say the least.
The Rupiah this year, along with the Malaysian Ringgit has faced tough devaluation, the worst in 17 years.
I consistently witter on about the size of Indonesia both in physical distance, a country that spans the equivalent of London to Tehran, but also its religious and cultural diversity as well as having 250M and expanding population growth. It is predominantly Muslim, the biggest Muslim community in the world. But as a country, it is also home to many Hindus and Christians all of which appear to co-exist in a relatively harmonious way.
As a country, it has its issues as well as perhaps a poor global reputation as a corrupt endemic race. However, apart from the stupidity from a few pockets of archaic individuals. Such as the Kuta Police, pistol whipping Australian tourists prior to marching them to an ATM in order to force-ably relieve them of AUD$23, 000 or the tourists will face trumped up charges of Indecency, More recently, this week, in fact, the Immigration officials who allegedly refused to apply a stamp to a Taiwanese tourist passport unless he paid and then followed the same tourist to the bus area attacking him whilst he was relieved of US$2, 300. All of which was caught on CCTV by a traveling tourist who was also allegedly attacked to remove the video. All of this needs to be dealt severely with and the individuals involved receiving a custodial sentence, apart from the gravity of the crime they are sullying the image of Indonesia.
That aside, the country is on the whole a peaceful environment rich in resources, labour and skills, all of which come at a vastly reduced cost not just because of the Rupiah's slide but also the lack of opportunity for several decades etc..
I have been involved with Indonesia for some 20 years and at times have sat in, the board room of some of the worlds largest mobile telcos, such as Telkomsel and XL I have also been unwittingly caught up in the 1998 downfall of the 40 year Suharto government as I navigated my way to the airport through Marauding masses.
In my opinion and clearly the opinion of Morgan Stanley; never before has the opportunity presented itself to be so ripe for Investment. The current government is determined to stamp on corruption and has to date removed many 100's of officials from their posts. Few places in the world give rise to an emerging middle class as that of Indonesia. A country that is predominantly moderate and cohesive, has a determination to evolve into a sophisticated Internationally established entity. It also has a homegrown market, which is ripe for the picking, both through consumerism as well as masses of infrastructure projects linking this vast archipelago by land and sea. Couple that with a currency that has been reduced by 55%, for me this country is now a must place to be involved, adding that when; Morgan Stanley alert its investment community of Indonesia's vast potential then now is definitely the time.
The world, conversely is saturated, all the toys have been purchased and all the labour exhausted as well as being financially savvy.
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