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30 May, 2016

“Indonesians’ assets kept abroad are larger than those at home” – VP Jusuf Kalla

Jakarta (ANTARA News), 29 May 2016 – Indonesia is lagging behind other countries in economic development because of its own wrong policies, not because it lacks capability or potential, Vice President M. Jusuf Kalla said.

“If we had not spent too much money on fuel subsidies in the past 10 years, we would have earned Rp2,000 trillion from interest alone. If we had that huge fund, we would have been able to build various kinds of infrastructure. Our policies must be evaluated because there have been big mistakes,” he pointed out during the launch of a book, “Widjojo Nitisastro: Panditaning Para Raja” (Widjojo Nitisastro: The Adviser of Kings) here on Saturday.

Indonesia lags behind other countries due to wrong policies: VP Kalla

Vice President Jusuf Kalla. (ANTARA/M. Agung Rajasa)

Kalla underlined that Indonesia’s economic growth has not been proportional to its capabilities. As a result, other countries, such as Malaysia, South Korea and China, which once had lower economic growth than Indonesia, have progressed steadily, moving ahead of Indonesia.

Much of Indonesian citizens have kept their assets abroad. Cumulatively, they will exceed the country’s national gross domestic product, he argued.

If the assets are proven, Indonesia will be richer than Malaysia, he added.

“Indonesia’s assets kept abroad are larger than those at home. What is wrong? Our export import law could have been wrong. We may be wrong with our foreign exchange law. We may be wrong with our tax law. Admittedly, our policies need to be evaluated,” he explained.

To push state revenue and national financial development, the government is drafting a tax amnesty law as an instrument to bring back the Indonesian assets into the country, he stated.

The tax amnesty bill, if endorsed into law, will increase tax receipts by Rp180 trillion.