From The Jakarta Post

British investment in RI can only grow, PM says

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and visiting British Prime Minister Tony Blair agreed Thursday to boost economic ties and build on the changing business climate here and the enormous opportunities Indonesia has to offer to British investors.

"There is already substantial British investment here but that can be much, much more. The reforms that Indonesia are making to its system of business are going to offer real opportunities and potential for us to move toward closer cooperation in the future.

"There are, I know, many British firms that believe Indonesia today is a good place to invest in," he said after meeting with Yudhoyono.

Indonesia British Business Council (IBBC) co-chairman Maxi Gunawan said exports to Britain were expected to grow by up to 25 percent this year from US$1.5 billion last year, and British investment in Indonesia to grow by some 15 percent from $1.6 billion.

"Even though British firms are mostly low profile, they have one of the biggest commitments to Indonesia. British Petroleum, Standard Chartered and Premier Oil provide examples that could attract more British companies here," he said.

Blair also made a speech to members of the IBBC at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Jakarta. (photograph)

British investment is significant in Indonesia, coming second last year after Japan's. Maxi said new British investors were interested in entering the prospective agriculture, health and education sectors. -- Tony Hotland
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