21 March 2013 - 23 March 2013

Indonesia - the other Asian giant

Chair: The Lord Williams of Baglan PhD

Unseasonal cold and snow outside did not inhibit an intense but friendly debate on Indonesia’s economic and political future, and her potential role in Asia and the wider world. Strong and diverse representation from Indonesia fed a rich discussion, with strong contributions from the international foreign policy and business communities too. We were very grateful for the support of Chatham House, our co-sponsors for this conference, and for wise chairmanship from Lord Williams of Baglan.


Indonesia’s democratic transition had been extraordinarily impressive, and it was hard to envisage circumstances under which this was likely to be reversed. But there were still many challenges for democracy to overcome, and many complaints, as rising expectations of better services and better governance were not always met. The Presidential election of 2014 would be a crucial moment. The new President would need to be committed not only to democracy but also to continuing reform, while a close election could test the system.

Indonesia had a reasonable legislative and administrative framework in place, but lacked strong institutions and the human capacity to implement decisions wisely. The education system was not producing the skilled people required in sufficient numbers. The rule of law remained a basic weakness because of the unreformed police and judiciary, and generally inadequate law enforcement. While major conflicts had been largely addressed, with the significant exception of Papua, minor conflicts were proliferating. The track record of religious and ethnic tolerance was on the whole positive, but there were worrying signs, particularly on the religious side, where movements with hard-line agendas were not being taken on by the government.

The country’s recent economic performance had been very strong, and the potential for the future was high, with major assets in the young population, a dynamic internal market, a sound macroeconomic framework, and huge natural resources. But constantly rising growth could not be taken for granted: it depended on consistently good economic decision-making by the government. There were some worrying trends here, not least a tendency to economic nationalism, and poorly considered short-termism. It was reasonable to want to maximise national benefits from growth, but recent policies on international trade and foreign investment looked short-sighted from everyone’s point of view, including the poorest parts of Indonesian society. Other concerns and constraints on growth included poor infrastructure, ineffective land policies, regulation and bureaucracy, corruption, rapid wage inflation, and rising income inequality. The economic glass still looked more than half full overall, but future success and rates of growth higher than 6%, needed to tackle poverty ineffectively, would not happen by themselves. They required consistently good decision-making.

Internationally Indonesia was now ready to be more outward-looking, and to play a more leading role regionally and on the wider international stage. Her inclination was still to lead from behind and to regard ASEAN as the cornerstone of her approach, avoiding any suggestion of an ambition for regional hegemony. This desire to be everyone’s friend was admirable, but it was less clear how well it would stand up to the reality of a complex world and an increasingly tense region. Priorities needed to be set, and stands taken. Nevertheless Indonesia could be a good example to others, including in the Middle East and North Africa, of a successful democratic transition and of religious tolerance. She could usefully increase her outreach to the rest of the world.

If the conference identified various areas where changes and reforms were needed, the conclusion was generally positive. Indonesia was now a functioning democracy, with normal democratic problems; its future strong development could make a real difference for its own people, and for the wider world. But Indonesians would have to make this destiny happen, not wait for it to fall into their lap.

Indonesia’s democratic health

One key question posed in advance of the conference was how far Indonesia’s democratic progress should now be considered irreversible. The answer was strikingly positive. The country had made amazing strides since the crisis of 1998, and had defied all the dire predictions made then of chaos and break-up. People had taken to democracy with relish, as shown by the continuing high turn-out in elections. Democracy was now firmly established, and it was hard to imagine circumstances in which this highly successful transition could be reversed. It would certainly take a very major shock, or combination of shocks, to change the present dynamic.

Of course, nothing was impossible, even in long-established democracies, let alone recent ones. A leader could be elected to provide a return to ‘stronger’ government, and run out of control on the basis of such a mandate. Democracy might get much tougher if and when a period of lower economic growth came along. Future generations could easily forget what it had been really like under Suharto and military rule. But for the moment the foundations looked solid. Talk of a crisis of national identity had faded, and, although there were naturally tensions of many kinds around such a huge and diverse country, the sense of ‘Indonesian-ness’ seemed to have increased in general.

This did not mean there were not many complaints about the quality of Indonesian democracy, and about recent lack of reform. Such complaints were widespread and often justified. They could well become still more vocal in the future. But this was a normal process of rising expectations not always being met, and the resulting clamour was amplified by a generally free and vibrant press. Outsiders needed to understand and accept that decision-making in a democracy, especially a relatively new one, would be slower and more complex than in a dictatorship, and to avoid appearing at times to be hankering for the good old days. Some issues raised by internal and external critics were of course serious: corruption, rising inequality, centre-periphery tensions, weak law and order institutions, lack of human capacity. However Indonesia’s democracy was still one of the strongest in the region, and a real asset for the country in terms of both domestic stability and international attractiveness and soft power.  This was an extraordinary achievement, which should not be under-estimated.

The elections in 2014 would nevertheless be a significant challenge and a key moment for Indonesia’s continuing development. The fact that President Yudhoyono had not sought to change the rules to allow himself a third term was a good sign for Indonesian democracy. But it was essential that the next President remained committed to democracy and good governance, and that the process of reform resumed. Stasis would be a bad outcome. At the moment it was not clear who the candidates would be, and whether the current political system would prove able to throw up new, dynamic figures well-placed to lead the country. The political parties were weak, without proper financing, and based more on personalities than programmes. Concerns had been expressed about the possibility of former General Prabowo winning, and heralding a move back towards military dominance. These fears were no doubt exaggerated. He above all would have to prove his democratic credentials. But the nervousness was understandable.

Another concern might be the ability of the unreformed electoral machinery, and the political system more widely, to withstand the test of a close and potentially contested election result. Robust mechanisms and institutions would be needed to ensure no trouble on the streets, given lack of faith in the courts, and it was not clear that Indonesia yet had them.

Strengths and weaknesses of the system

The overall view was that Indonesia had a few good institutions, but many weak ones; and some good individuals, but no strength in depth in terms of human capital. The net result was that a decent legislative and administrative framework seriously lacked implementation capacity. Too often laws which were good in intention and well-written were not enforced. Civil service capacity was poor, even in some mainstream Jakarta ministries, and was extremely uneven, to say the least, outside the capital. The educational system was simply not producing the numbers of quality people required. This was one of the biggest problems the country faced.

The weakest link in the chain was law and order. The police force was not fit for purpose, even for protecting the country’s citizens, and the judicial system also desperately needed reform. For now, too many judgments were almost openly for sale. This meant that the rule of law was a fiction in large parts of national life. This fundamental weakness was mitigated to some extent by a vibrant free press and an increasingly strong civil society. But that could not be enough. The next President and government urgently needed to grasp this nettle.

Most of the major conflicts in the country had been tackled, and largely resolved, with the exception of the complex problems of Papua. But there was now a proliferation of minor conflicts, driven by local tensions over issues like land, religion and tribal loyalties, which were not being effectively addressed. Some of them could get out of hand if left untreated.

Decentralisation had overall been positive in Indonesia’s development, but there were many unresolved issues which were hampering development – allocation of resources between the centre and the local authorities, and the role of government, were two obvious examples.

Future economic growth

Indonesia’s economic performance in the last few years had been exceptionally strong. Growth rates of 6% had been higher than almost every other country in the region, or indeed the world, despite the global recession. Indonesia had huge assets for the future: for example a young and dynamic population, a huge and growing internal market, a healthy macroeconomic position, and massive natural resources. The future should therefore be bright. A recent McKinsey report had predicted that Indonesia would be the world’s 7th biggest economy by 2030. She was managing her natural disasters much better than before, and had shown great economic resilience and adaptability at difficult moments

However, the mood of the conference was a good deal less upbeat than this outward picture might have suggested. Many speakers made the point that the McKinsey prediction was not manifest destiny – it depended on whether Indonesian governments continued to take the right decisions. And here the evidence was mixed at best.

The biggest single concern was that economic nationalism, which came naturally to many in Indonesia, would lead to bad decisions and bad outcomes, not just for foreign investors and traders, but for Indonesians themselves, not least the poorest parts of the population. It was perfectly reasonable and legitimate for the Indonesian authorities to want to maximise local value-added and local content in key sectors. But good intentions did not necessarily lead to sound decisions, especially when instincts and short-term political calculation were being followed, not evidence. Too many decisions seemed to be badly thought through, and to be bound to lead to counterproductive results: measures ostensibly designed to increase domestic rattan and garlic production were cited to illustrate this.

Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) had done reasonably well in recent years. The huge domestic market was obviously attractive. Many long-term investors had flourished. New investment in manufacturing facilities from Japan and Korea was particularly welcome, likely as it was to produce higher quality jobs than investments in natural resources. Indonesia was certainly less unattractive than other countries in South East Asia, as a recent outside report had put it. But FDI could have been higher, given Indonesia’s natural advantages. One problem was that the government did not seem to have a coherent set of policies and incentives to attract FDI. Indeed it often seemed that Indonesia was not even trying to attract FDI, and thought that it was doing international investors a favour just by letting them in at all. This was short-sighted, when competition for FDI was so fierce around the world. Potential new investors could certainly be easily put off. Indonesia risked becoming more like India than, say, Thailand in this respect.

Indonesia had also managed to develop remarkably poor and bad-tempered trade relations with many parts of the world, including the US, the EU, and some of her neighbours. Protectionism often seemed to be an instinctive reaction, including from some big Indonesian companies. Indonesia was not of course alone in such reactions. But in many other countries there was at least some understanding from experienced thinkers and players that international trade was good for everyone’s economies, and therefore some pushback against instinctive protectionism. This seemed to be largely absent in Indonesia. Certainly the government never made the case for free trade. Part of the reason was perhaps that Indonesia so far had few international business champions out there in the world, interested in exporting and in how the wider world worked.

These concerns were irritating for now, but not game-changers. The fear was that under populist pressures, economic nationalism would become even more the default option than it was now, and that in future not only would past battles between nationalists and reformers have to be refought, but there would be ever fewer reformers willing to stick their heads above the parapet.

A wider, related concern was whether Indonesia’s ability to make a good and relatively easy living out of abundant natural resources had undermined the competitive spirit of some of its companies, and reduced willingness to take tough decisions aimed at making the country’s economy more competitive and better integrated internationally. The recent boom in commodity prices (now waning) and huge demand for products like coal from China and India had obviously been part of this. Views were divided on whether Indonesia was successfully avoiding the ‘curse’ of natural wealth, or could do so in future. But the risk was certainly there. In any case the economy needed to move away from reliance on domestic consumption for growth, and become genuinely internationally competitive, to achieve more sustainable growth. Productivity needed to rise to make this possible.

A number of other serious constraints on future economic growth were identified:

  • Poor infrastructure – particularly in areas like roads, ports and airports. Logistics were hugely expensive in Indonesia, even allowing for the costs of inhabiting a massively spread-out archipelago. Not enough investment was going into creating new infrastructure.
  • Land – difficulties in land acquisition were widely seen as a major problem. Ill-defined land tenure was a fundamental issue. The cultural and economic sensitivities around land were appreciated, with the risk of local village views being ridden over roughshod and related challenges to agricultural production and tropical forest cover. But much better and quicker land allocation policies were possible without undue damage in these areas. The new land acquisition law could be a significant improvement but there were big question marks over implementation, not least because of popular opposition in some places.
  • Regulation – there was too much poorly thought-out regulation and a slow bureaucracy, and often lack of coherence over different regulatory regimes between the centre and the provinces. Corruption – Indonesia’s place on the global corruption index had been stuck around 120 for a decade. It was far from the worst in the world, and the existence of a strong anti-corruption commission and a free press certainly helped. But the commission’s mandate and focus were too limited, with excessive emphasis on individual prosecutions rather than tackling systemic corruption.
  • Rapid wage inflation – recent large increases had perhaps been justified, and also helped fuel consumption-led growth and reduce inequality. They could be absorbed in the short term. But continuing increases on this scale could rapidly make Indonesia uncompetitive in labour terms.
  • Income inequality – this had been rising rapidly in recent years, and was a recipe for trouble. The gap between Hollywood-style conspicuous wealth in Jakarta – the “Marie Antoinette syndrome”, as one participant put it – and the 100 million rural poor was vast and growing. Current anti-poverty policies were poorly targeted, and most seemed to be patchily effective at best. The fuel subsidy was a particularly egregious example. It benefitted the well-off much more than the poor, and was absorbing a huge proportion of the budget. It could not be stopped overnight, but gradual reduction should be possible, even in a tumultuous democracy.
  • The financial sector – a comparative strength for Indonesia after the clean-up, but the recent banking law could prove an unnecessarily large risk to future foreign investment in the sector. Meanwhile bank lending was rather conservative from a growth-promotion point of view;
  • Lack of middle-sized companies and educated middle managers;
  • The rising power and influence of state-owned enterprises, which dominated some sectors, and could crush private enterprise there, though not the important consumer area;
  • Lack of legal certainty in some key areas, for example taxation.

Overall, we certainly saw the economic glass as more than half-full. But we also saw a rising risk that Indonesia would not make the policy step-change necessary to go to the next level, and avoid the middle income trap. She needed 7-8% growth to tackle poverty effectively. The good news was that the problems were all fixable, if the political will and conducive decision-making circumstances were there.

Indonesia on the international stage

Indonesia had naturally gone through a reticent foreign policy phase in the wake of the traumatic post-Suharto transition. But she was steadily becoming more outward-looking. The consensus was that she was now ready to take a more leading role once more, and that this would be both appropriate and positive for the wider world as well as the region. The question was what form of leadership she should adopt – should she go on “leading from behind” or now move to a more exposed role? Should she always operate through regional organisations, above all ASEAN, or be ready to go more unilateral when appropriate?

For the moment Indonesia’s foreign policy stance had been described by the foreign minister as having “a million friends and zero enemies”. The point was that this was the first time in her history as an independent country that Indonesia saw no states as her enemies, while no outside states regarded her as an enemy either. This was notable and worth preserving. She had no desire for a hegemonic role within ASEAN or Asia and was pursuing a “dynamic equilibrium” in the region, rather than a more traditional “balance of power” approach. This “benevolent giant” approach might not stand the test of time, and of wider rising tensions in East Asia, but it was meanwhile admirable – and a good example to other big countries (China, India, Brazil… ) on how to behave towards their smaller neighbours. Her low current spending on defence reflected this approach – but might again prove to be based on an illusion over the longer term. For the moment she had a number of strategic partnerships around the world, but these were for the most part empty of much content.

In any case, for the time being Indonesia had increased confidence and greater diplomatic space in which to operate. In the view of most of us, she clearly preferred to be acting wherever possible through ASEAN, as the cornerstone of her foreign policy; and more widely in Asia through the East Asia summit. On the global stage, she was proud to be a member of the G20, though not taking a very active role hitherto. She was not, and did not want to be a member of the BRICS, which she did not see as a cohesive or effective group. She wanted to be seen still as a developing country, and a representative of other developing countries, though again this could well prove increasingly difficult to maintain over time, if her own economy continued to grow rapidly. One obvious point of concern was the small size of her diplomatic service – a global role would mean significant investment to boost her overseas presence.

Indonesia could also play a very important role as a model of democratic transition and domestic pluralism, particularly religious tolerance. This might be especially helpful in the Middle East and North Africa context, as countries with majority Islamic populations like Tunisia, Egypt and Libya struggled with their own transitions. However, it was important not to classify Indonesia as a ‘Muslim democracy’, any more than the US should be classified as a ‘Christian democracy’. Indonesia was a democracy which also happened to have a Muslim majority. Should she be more active in promoting herself as a model for other countries? Views were divided on this. But there was a general feeling that she needed to do a lot more outreach to the rest of the world, to ensure that what she had to offer was at least known – which would have the added advantage of helping more Indonesians get out and see the world too. The Bali Democratic Forum was one mechanism which could be more intensively used.

At the same time, some warning notes were sounded over how long Indonesia’s reputation for tolerance, particularly on the religious side, might continue. Groups inside major Islamic organisations such as Muhammidiyah were beginning to push their own agendas harder, without any apparent resistance from the government. Some were xenophobic and anti-globalisation. Islam was not the state religion, certainly, but at times the government was behaving as if it were. Other religious communities were feeling the strain of this. Minority rights were under pressure. Once again the risk of erosion of valuable past gains was there, and needed to be guarded against.

There was some debate about whether Indonesia was already a leader and game-changer in one area of global policy – the environment. Some thought so, citing its readiness to break with the rest of the G77 over initiatives on forestry protection, carbon emissions and coastal protection. Others pointed out that the gap between rhetoric and reality remained wide, and that once again implementation lagged a long way behind promise. Coal and palm oil, two pillars of the Indonesian economy, both posed huge and continuing threats to the environment.

We also discussed how far Indonesia, if she wanted to lead, would have to start taking stands on more issues, thereby alienating some of her current friends. This was not a question of aligning more or less with the US, or with the West more generally, but of deciding where she wanted to use her weight in her own interests, and in those of regional and global stability. One obvious question mark was over future relations with China. Links were good at present, but China’s apparent ambitions, and tougher stances, in the South and East China Seas were bound to concern Indonesia, even if she had no territorial issues with China herself. She would not want to line-up with the US pivot to Asia, but at the same time would want to make sure the Americans were still around as a counterweight to China’s predominance in the neighbourhood. This would be a tricky balance to strike. Indonesia might also be well-placed to mediate, as she was trying to do over the South China Sea Code of Conduct, but again this would mean sticking her head further above the parapet.

A final issue was who in Indonesia would shape future foreign policy. The days of domination of this agenda by the President and a small elite were now clearly over. Parliament, civil society and public opinion all now wanted and needed to have their say. This was healthy – as long as there was some pushback from the government and others with international experience against simplistic and nationalist voices. President Yudhoyono had been the first Indonesian leader since Suharto to show a certain skill in foreign policy, and taste for it. It was important that his successor continued this trend.

The following suggestions were made for areas of action, particularly for the Indonesian government, with all due modesty and humility, and in no particular order:

  • Strengthen the electoral mechanisms and electoral institutions, including new arrangements for political party funding;
  • Step-up the fight against corruption on a more systemic basis;
  • Make reform of the police and judiciary a top priority;
  • Maintain religious tolerance despite pressures in the opposite direction;
  • Education, education, education;
  • Reform of the bureaucracy, including much better training for civil servants at all levels;
  • Clarification of responsibilities and funding allocations between the centre and the provinces;
  • Keep economic nationalism in check, and devise coherent, positive and effective policies for international investment and trade;
  • Invest much more in infrastructure;
  • Increase spending, public and private, on R&D to levels more like those of China, i.e. around 1% of GDP
  • Improve and speed up land allocation policies while respecting fully local sensitivities;
  • Keep wage rates under sufficient control to retain international competitiveness, and reform labour law
  • Develop agriculture and manufacturing industry, and reduce reliance on natural resources;
  • Improve basic public services so that democracy can be seen by people to be delivering;
  • Revisit poverty alleviation policies to target them better;
  • Reform the energy and mining sectors, where government policies were seen as particularly poor;
  • Reduce gradually the fuel subsidy, and use the money saved for infrastructure and to start building a basic social safety net;
  • On Papua, open it up to travel, address concerns about security forces’ excesses, and promote transparency about resource allocation;
  • Decide where Indonesia’s foreign policy priorities really lie and act accordingly – an early White Paper on this would be a good first step;
  • Increase investment in diplomacy
  • Increase international visibility and profile to make Indonesia and its attractions, including its democracy and tolerance, better known, and help Indonesians know the rest of the world much better too.


Despite the apparent length of this list of desirable changes, the tone of the conference was overall positive about just how much Indonesia had achieved in the last 15 years. She had above all become a ‘normal’ country, with normal democratic problems, and had also shown remarkable resilience in all kinds of ways. The warning notes came from friendly concern that the opportunities to step up to the next level, politically, economically and internationally, might be missed. The country was still underperforming its potential, and momentum could easily be lost. Indonesia was a rising power in the world, with the chance to make a really positive difference not only for its own citizens but for the wider international community – if it continued to take the right decisions.


CHAIR: The Lord Williams of Baglan PhD
Distinguished Visiting Fellow and Acting Head, Asia Programme, Chatham House; International Trustee, BBC. Formerly: United Nations Under Secretary-General and Special Coordinator for Lebanon (2008-11); UK Special Representative on the Middle East and special projects (2007-08); UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East (2006-07); Director, Middle East and Asia, Department of Political Affairs, United Nations, New York (2005-06); Special Adviser to the UK Foreign Secretary (2000-05); Director, Office for Children and Armed Conflict, UN (1999-2000); Senior Fellow, International Institute of Strategic Studies (1995-98); Director of Information, UN Protection Force (UNPROFOR), Zagreb (1994-95); Director, Human Rights, United Nations, Cambodia (1992-93).

Professor Richard Barichello
Director, Centre for Southeast Asia Research, and Professor of Food and Resource Economics, University of British Columbia, Vancouver; International Advisory Committee, Journal of Southeast Asian Economies. Formerly: Consultant to World Bank, USAID, IDRC and HIID on selected Indonesia projects (1989-2005); Senior Resident Advisor, Harvard Institute for International Development, Customs and Economic Management Project, Department of Finance, Jakarta (1986-88).

Ambassador Ferry de Kerckhove
Fellow, Canadian Defence and Foreign Affairs Institute; Senior Fellow, Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Ottawa; Adjunct Professor, Department of Political Science, Cape Breton University. Formerly: Canadian Diplomatic Service (1973-2011); Ambassador to Egypt (2008-11); Director General, International Organisations (2004-06); Ambassador to Indonesia (2001-03); High Commissioner to Pakistan (1998-2001).

Ambassador Loïc Hennekinne
Adviser to Jacques Attali, President, Planet Finance. Formerly: French Diplomatic Service: Ambassador of France to Italy (2002-05); Secretary General, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Paris (1998-2002); Ambassador to Canada (1997-98); Inspector General of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Paris (1994-96); Ambassador to Japan (1991-93); Counsellor for Diplomatic Affairs, Office of the President (1989-91); Ambassador to the Republic of Indonesia (1986-88).

Dr Norbert Baas
Member, Economic and Commercial Advisory Board, German Federal Foreign Office (2012-); Supervisory Board Member, Swiss-German University, Jakarta (2012-). Formerly: German Diplomatic Service (1978-2012); Ambassador of Germany to the Republic of Indonesia, Timor-Leste and ASEAN (2009-12); Ambassador to the Republic of Korea (2006-09); Special Envoy for Eastern Europe, Central Asia and Caucasus (2003).

Professor Dewi Fortuna Anwar
Deputy for Political Affairs to the Vice President of the Republic of Indonesia (2010-); Director for Research and Program, Habibie Center, Jakarta; Member, UN Secretary General's Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters; International Advisory Board Member, Asia-Pacific College of Diplomacy, ANU Australia; Council Member, International Institute for Strategic Studies, London. Formerly: Deputy Chair for Social Sciences and Humanities, Indonesian Institute of Sciences (2001-2010); Assistant Minister/State Secretary for Foreign Affairs.
His Excellency Dr Dino Patti Djalal
Indonesian Diplomatic Service (1987-); Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia to the United States of America (2010-). Formerly: Presidential Spokesman (2004-10); Director for North American Affairs (2002-04); Assistant to Director General for Political Affairs.
Mr Rafendi Djamin
Executive Director, Coalition of Indonesian NGOs for International Human Rights Advocacy (2003-); Indonesian Representative, ASEAN Intergovernmental Commision on Human Rights (2009-). Formerly: Convener, Solidarity for Asian Peoples' Advocacy Task Force on ASEAN and Human Rights (2007-09); Independent Evaluator, Indonesian National Commission on Violence Against Women (2006); Project Coordinator, Campaign Against Impunity (2001-03); Social Worker and Founder, Indonesia's Forum for Human Dignity, The Netherlands.
Dr Ing Ilham Habibie MBA
Co-Founder, Shareholder and President Director (2002-), Pt. Ilthabi Rekatama, Jakarta; Vice Chairman for Research and Technology, Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Board Member, Alliance for Low-Carbon Businesses, Indonesia; Presidium Member, Indonesian Muslim Intellectuals Association; Member the Board of Experts, Golkar Party; Co-Founder and Head, Institute for Democracy, Science and Technology, The Habibie Center; Member of the Global Board of Advisors, Booth School of Business, University of Chicago.
Mr Dharsono Hartono
President Director, PT Rimba Makmur Utama; Financial Consultant. Formerly: Merger acquisition, debt management and financing and capital raising, PricewaterhouseCoopers and JP Morgan, New York.

Ms Clara Joewono
Researcher, Centre for Strategic and International Studies, Jakarta; Deputy Secretary, Indonesian National Committee, Pacific Economic Cooperation Council; Member, Indonesian National Committee, Council for Security Cooperation in Asia Pacific; Vice Chair, CSIS Foundation.
Mr Harry Kandou
Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia.
His Excellency Mr Arif Havas Oegroseno
Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia to the Kingdom of Belgium, Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the European Union, Belgium (2010-). Formerly: Director-General for Legal Affairs and International Treaties, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Jakarta (2008-10); President, 20th Conference of State Parties to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (1982); Chief Negotiator of Indonesia's Treaties on boundaries, extradition and security matters.
Dr Myrna Safitri
Executive Director, Epistema Institute, Indonesia; Member, UNDP Expert Panel on Participatory Governance Assessment for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation+; Founder, HuMa; Lecturer, University of Indonesia and President University; Member, Forest Tenure Reform Team, Ministry of Forestry; Coordinator, CSO coalition on forest and land tenure reform. Formerly: Legal Drafter, Indonesian bill of natural resource management, Ministry of Environment; Collaborator on Indonesian National Strategy on Access to Justice, National Development Planning Agency.
Dr Rizal Sukma
Executive Director, Centre for Strategic and International Studies, Jakarta; Chairman for International Relations, Central Executive Board, Muhammadiyah, Jakarta; Member, Board of Governors, Institute for Peace and Democracy; Member, Regional Editorial Board, 'Global Change, Peace and Security'; Member, International Editorial Board, 'Studies in Asian Security', Stanford University Press/EastWest Center. Formerly: Member, National Committee on Strategic Defense Review, Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Indonesia.
His Excellency Mr T M Hamzah Thayeb Indonesian Diplomatic Service: Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia to the United Kingdom (2012-). Formerly: Director General for Asian, Pacific and African Affairs (2009-12); Ambassador to Australia (2005-09); Director for East Asia and the Pacific, Directorate General for Asian, Pacific and African Affairs (2004-05); Director for International Security and Disarmament, Directorate General for Multilateral Political, Social and Security Affairs (2002-04).

Minister Noriyuki Shikata
Japanese Diplomatic Service (1986-): Political Minister, Embassy of Japan to the United Kingdom (2012-). Formerly: Deputy Cabinet Secretary for Public Affairs, Director of Global Communications, Office of the Prime Minister of Japan (2010-12); Director, Economic Treaties, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2009-10); Director, US and Canada Economic Affairs (2007-09); Director, Status of US Forces Agreement (2004-06); Energy Advisor, Japanese Delegation to the OECD (1999-2002).
Minister Makita Shimokawa
Japanese Diplomatic Service (1984-): Minister and Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of Japan to the Republic of Indonesia (2011-). Formerly: Director, Personnel Division (2009-11); Director, National Security Policy Division (2008-09); Chief of Staff to the Minister for Foreign Affairs (2007-08); Cabinet Counsellor, Office of the Assistant Chief Cabinet Secretary, Cabinet Secretariat (2005-07); Director, First International Economic Affairs Division and Asia-Europe Cooperation Division (2004-05).


Mr John Pang
Chief Executive, CIMB ASEAN Research Institute.


Mr James Sheppard
Policy Analyst, Directorate for Public Governance and Territorial Development, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Paris (2008-). Formerly: Public financial management Specialist, World Bank, Jakarta (2003-06); Researcher, School of Asian Studies, University of Western Australia (2002-03).

Mr Luo Yongkun
Researcher, Southeast Asian Studies, China Institute for Contemporary International Relations, Beijing.
Ms Xue Song
PhD Candidate, Developing Countries Studies Program, Department of International Relations, Tsinghua University, Beijing.

Dr Leonard Sebastian
Associate Professor and Coordinator, Indonesia Programme, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (2006-); Honorary Advisor, Bakrie Center Foundation (2010-); Honorary Advisor to the Board, Ancora Foundation (2008-); Member, Advisory Panel to Government Parliamentary Committee on Defence and Foreign Affairs (2002-). Formerly: International Policy Advisor to the Timor-Leste Foreign Ministry (2011); Consultant, Ministry of Defence, advising on establishment of Indonesian Defence University (2008-10).
Dr Pingtjin Thum
Coordinator, Project Southeast Asia, University of Oxford (2008-); Research Fellow, Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore (2013-). Formerly: Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore (2012); Affiliated Research Fellow, International Institute of Asian Studies, Leiden University (2012).


Dr Michael Buehler
Assistant Professor of Political Science, Northern Illinois University; Associate Research Fellow, Asia Society, New York City (2011-). Formerly: Consultant, World Bank, Jakarta and Washington DC (2011-12); Postdoctoral Fellow in Modern Southeast Asian Studies, Weatherhead East Asian Institute, Columbia University (2008-10); Technical Advisor on Local Infrastructure Privatisation, The Asia Foundation, Jakarta (2009); Consultant Governance Unit, United Nations Development Programme, Jakarta (2006-07).

Mr John Aglionby
Senior News Editor, World News Desk, The Financial Times, London (2010-). Formerly: International Economy News Editor, The Financial Times (2009-10); Indonesia Correspondent, Financial Times (2006-09); Jakarta correspondent, The Economist (2002-2009); Jakarta-based South-east Asia correspondent, The Guardian (1998-2006).
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Life Peer, House of Lords (2011-); Government Whip (2012-); Government Spokesperson for: Communities and Local Government (2012-), International Development (2012-), Justice (2012-). Formerly: Cabinet Member for: Community Safety and Engagement (2008-09); Environment and Transport (2006-08); Deputy Chairman, London Councils Transport and Environment Committee (2006-08).

Ambassador Mark Canning CMG
HM Diplomatic Service: HM Ambassador to the Republic of Indonesia and UK Representative to ASEAN (2011-). Formerly: Ambassador to Zimbabwe (2009-11); Ambassador to Myanmar (2006-09); Deputy High Commissioner, Kuala Lumpur (2001-05); First Secretary, British Embassy, Jakarta (1993-97).
Mr Tom Dodd
Head, ASEAN Department, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (2013-).
Mr Richard Graham MP
Member of Parliament (Conservative) for Gloucester; Chair, All Party Parliamentary Group for Indonesia; Prime Minister's Trade Envoy to Indonesia; Parliamentary Private Secretary to Minister for Asia, Huge Swire.
Mr John Hughes
Group Political Adviser, BP plc, London; Member, Court of Governors, London School of Economics and Political Science.
Mr Simon Keswick
Chairman: Mandarin Oriental International Ltd (1984-); Dairy Farm International Holdings Ltd (1984-); Hong Kong Land Holdings Ltd (1983-); Director: Jardine Lloyd Thompson Group plc (2001-); Jardine Strategic Holdings Ltd (1987-); Matheson & Co (1982-); Jardine Matheson Holdings Ltd (1972-). Formerly: Chairman: Hanson plc (1991-2005); Fleming Mercantile Investment Trust (1990-2003); Kwik Save Group plc (1990-98); Wellcome plc (1995-96); Trafalgar House plc (1993-96).
Mr Anthony Nightingale CMG, SBS, JP
Jardine Matheson Holdings Ltd (1969-): Non-Executive Director (2012-), formerly Managing Director (2006-12); Commissioner, Astra International, Indonesia (2000-); Hong Kong Representative to APEC Business Advisory Council; Member, UK ASEAN Business Council Advisory Panel; Honorary Professor, School of Business, Baptist University, Hong Kong. Formerly Chairman, Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce.
The Rt Hon John Spellar MP
Member of Parliament (Labour) for Warley (1997-); Shadow Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minister (2010-). Formerly: Government Whip (2008-10); Minister of State, Northern Ireland Office (2003-05); Minister for Transport (2001-03); Minister of State for the Armed Forces (1999-2001).

Dr Michael Auslin
Resident Scholar in Asian and Security Studies and Director of Japan Studies, American Enterprise Institute, Washington DC (2007-); Columnist, The Wall Street Journal. Formerly: Associate Professor of History, Yale University (2000-07). Author, Pacific Cosmopolitans: A Cultural History of US-Japan Relations (Harvard University Press, 2011).
Ms Sidney Jones
Senior Adviser, Asia Program, International Crisis Group, Jakarta. Formerly: Asia Director, Human Rights Watch (1989-2002); Indonesia-Philippines Researcher, Amnesty International (1985-88); Program Officer, Ford Foundation (1977-84).
Dr Terrence Markin
Deputy Director, Strategic Futures Group, US National Intelligence Council.
Dr Douglas Ramage
Managing Director (Indonesia), BowerGroupAsia, Jakarta; Chair, Trade and Investment Committee, American Chamber of Commerce in Indonesia; Board Member: American-Indonesian Exchange Foundation (Fulbright Commission), Lontar Foundation, United States Cultural Center in Indonesia. Formerly: Senior Governance Advisor, The World Bank and Australian Government Development Assistance Program in Indonesia; Country Representative, The Asia Foundation, Jakarta (1996-2008).
Dr David Rothwell
Assistant Professor, School of Social Work, McGill University, Montreal (2010-). Faculty, McGill Centre for Research on Children and Families (2010-); Faculty Associate, Center for Social Development, George Warren Brown School of Social Work, Washington University, St Louis (2009-). Formerly: Postdoctoral Fellow, National University of Singapore (2008-10).
Ambassador J. Stapleton Roy
Director, Kissinger Institute on China and the United States, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington, DC; Senior Advisor, Kissinger Associates Inc.; Co-Chair, The United States-Indonesian Society; Advisory Director, Freeport-McMoran Copper & Gold. Formerly: US Diplomatic Service: Assistant Secretary of State for Intelligence and Research (1999-2000); Ambassador to the Republic of Indonesia (1996-99); Ambassador to the People's Republic of China (1991-95); to Singapore (1984-86).
Ms Bridgette Walker
US Diplomatic Service (2002-): Senior Indonesia Desk Officer, Office of Maritime Southeast Asian Affairs, Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, Department of State.