“ … Here is another one. A change in what Human nature will allow for government. "Careful, Kryon, don't talk about politics. You'll get in trouble." I won't get in trouble. I'm going to tell you to watch for leadership that cares about you. "You mean politics is going to change?" It already has. It's beginning. Watch for it. You're going to see a total phase-out of old energy dictatorships eventually. The potential is that you're going to see that before 2013.

They're going to fall over, you know, because the energy of the population will not sustain an old energy leader ..."
"Update on Current Events" – Jul 23, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: The Humanization of God, Gaia, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Benevolent Design, Financial Institutes (Recession, System to Change ...), Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Nuclear Power Revealed, Geothermal Power, Hydro Power, Drinking Water from Seawater, No need for Oil as Much, Middle East in Peace, Persia/Iran Uprising, Muhammad, Israel, DNA, Two Dictators to fall soon, Africa, China, (Old) Souls, Species to go, Whales to Humans, Global Unity,..... etc.)
(Subjects: Who/What is Kryon ?, Egypt Uprising, Iran/Persia Uprising, Peace in Middle East without Israel actively involved, Muhammad, "Conceptual" Youth Revolution, "Conceptual" Managed Business, Internet, Social Media, News Media, Google, Bankers, Global Unity,..... etc.)

Thursday, September 30, 2010

LPB To Host Int`l Conference on agricultural technology

Antara News, Thursday, September 30, 2010 16:25 WIB

Bogor, W Java (ANTARA News) - The Seventh International Conference of the Asian Federation for Information Technology in Agriculture (AFITA) will be held in Bogor, October 4 to 7, 2010.

AFITA President Prof Seishi Ninomiya will official open the conference, according to Prof Kudang Boro Seminar of the Bogor Institute of Agriculture.

A number of Asian countries, such as Indonesia, Japan, India, China, Korea and Thailand, Vietnam, the Philippines, Timor Leste and Malaysia will participate in the four-day seminar.

Individual invitees from Bangladesh, Mongolia, Israel, Pakistan, Laos, Bhutan and Iran will also join the meeting.

The conference will be organized at the IPB`s International Convention Center (IICC).

The upcoming conference will discuss a set of excellent or promising Information and Communication Technology (ICT)-based solutions for improving agricultural-based production systems and commerce to achieve their objectives.

The previous AFITA conferences had been organized respectively in Japan (1998), South Korea (2000), China (2002), Thailand (2004), China (2006), and again Japan (2008).

The Asian Federation for Information Technology in Agriculture, AFITA was founded in January 24, 1998 in Wakayama City, Japan.

The conference`s participants will discuss issues among other things on: Rural economies and ICT policies for rural development; Extension and knowledge repository services; Agricultural resources data banks and data mining; Remote Sensing and GIS applications for agriculture and precision farming; Agricultural Information System; Decision Support Systems for agriculture and agribusiness, Weather prediction models for profitable agricultural production; ICT applications in natural resources management; and e-governance standards/metadata and data standards in agriculture.

Papua holds workshop on forest conservation

Antara News, Thursday, September 30, 2010 15:47 WIB | Environment

Jayapura (ANTARA News) - The Papua provincial forestry office and the WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature)-Indonesia Sahul Papua office are organizing a two-day workshop on forest conservation here starting Thursday.

The workshop would discuss identification of high-value conservation areas to support sustainable development in Papua, Benja Mambai, program director of WWF-Indonesia Sahul Papua office, said here Thursday.

Some 26 participants representing the Papua and West Papua provincial administrations, academicians and NGOs are attending the workshop.

Bengkulu to host int`l meeting on earthquake

Antara News, Thursday, September 30, 2010 15:07 WIB

Bengkulu, Sumatra (ANTARA News) - An Asia-Pacific meeting on earthquake will be organized in Bengkulu Province, Sumatra Island, late 2010.

Some 16 Asia and the Pacific countries would participate in the meeting, Nana Sudjana, head of the Bengkulu provincial natural disaster mitigation office, said here Thursday.

Bengkulu is prone to earthquakes. In September 2007, Bengkulu was rocked by a 7.9 magnitude earthquake which killed at least 18 people and injured around 50 others.

The temblor seriously damaged 6,745 houses, and lightly damaged 13,184 others.

The natural disaster also damaged 277 houses of worship, 885 education facilities, 400 government offices, 331 healthcare facilities, 310 roads and bridges and 194 irrigation systems.

Indonesia`s Jakarta Industrial Estate to build US$130 mln plant

Antara News, Thursday, September 30, 2010 13:53 WIB

Jakarta (ANTARA News/Asia Pulse) - PT Jakarta Industrial Estate Pulogadung (JIEP), said it would start building a 130-megawatt power plant for its own use this year.

Agus Dwitarto, the president of the company, which is owned by the Jakarta city administration, said the US$130 million project will be discussed with a number of Japanese partners next month.

The power plant will likely use gas for fuel to be supplied by state gas distributor PT Perusahaan Gas Negara (PGN, JSX:PGAS), Dwitarto said. Construction of the project will be carried out by phases with the first and second phases each with a 40-MW capacity and third phase having a capacity of 50 MW.

The project to be completed by the end of next year will guarantee power supply to all tenants of the industrial estate.

Ministers’ wives launch village program

Erwida Maulia, The Jakarta Post, Yogyakarta | Thu, 09/30/2010 10:09 AM

First Lady Ani Yudhoyono and Cabinet ministers’ wives launched on Wednesday a program called Prosperous Village, which is aimed at empowering villagers with the help of university students.

The pilot project launched in Hargotirto village, Kulonprogo regency, is a joint undertaking between the Solidarity of Unity Cabinet Ministers’ Wives (SIKIB) and Yogyakarta’s Gadjah Mada University (UGM).

“We hope the scheme can serve as an example for other villages in Indonesia,” UGM rector Sujarwadi said in a speech.

The project is a collboration between five major programs of SIKIB and the student-run UGM rural field work program.

Ani said the SIKIB had been developing five major programs aimed at improving health, creativity, education and social and environmental awareness among the less-privileged.

“The five programs are expected to help Indonesia meet its MDGs [Millienium Development Goals] targets. We try to do simple but concrete jobs,” she said, citing as example the SIKIB’s dispatching of a number of “smart cars” (mobile libraries) to several regions and the establishment of “smart houses” (small libraries) in others.

She said university students taking part in the implementation of the Prosperous Village scheme would also benefit from it because it would give them the opportunity to put what they learned at school into practice.

“And with their villages being developed, we hope the youths will stay there and support the development instead of leaving the villages to seek jobs in big cities,” Ani said.

Hargotirto, which is home to more 1,900 families, is located in rural Yogyakarta, about an hour drive from the provincial capital. Most of its population work as farmers arning on average US$2 a day.

The scheme has built the community center a “smart house”, which combines the functions of a library and an Internet cafe, and a small traffic education center where children can learn about road signs and rules.

Related Article:

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Chinese steel firm considering relocating production to RI

The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Wed, 09/29/2010 9:43 AM

China’s state-owned steel company Guo Feng Iron Steel is mulling plans to relocate its Tang Shan production plant to Indonesia in the near future, with a total investment worth US$1 billion, an Indonesian government official says.

The government of China has asked Guo Feng relocate its Tang Shan plant because it is situated in a city area and produces intolerable pollution, Industry Ministry Metal, Machinery, Textiles and Miscellaneous Industries Director — General Ansari Bukhari said Monday.

“The company has visited several countries including Indonesia, seeking a new location for the plant,” Ansari said after meeting Guo Feng representatives at the Industry Ministry in Jakarta.

Guo Feng had approached Industry Minister M.S. Hidayat to ask him directly what support the government could provide foreign investors, specifically those intending to invest in the steel industry.

“In principal, the minister fully supports the relocation plan,” Ansari said.

“The minister will help the company obtain a business permit for the plant, find a site and secure energy supply for its production activities.”

Indonesian steel producer Gunung Garuda president director Jamaludin said Guo Feng was considering relocating here because of Indonesia’s wealth of raw materials, including iron ore.

“Indonesia’s political climate is also stable, so [Guo Feng] feels secure about relocating here.”

Jamaludin said Guo Feng would create a joint venture with Gunung Garuda if the relocation plan was to go ahead.

The plant could be built in Cilegon, Banten, or South Kalimantan, and would produce up to 3 million tons of steel per year, he said.

To support its operations, the plant would need up to 2 million tons of coal per year.

Guo Feng chairman Zang Zhen said he had come to Indonesia on an invitation from Gunung
Garuda, to ascertain how suitable Indonesia would be as a new home for the facility.

“Relations between the governments of China and Indonesia are very good.

“Our government also encourages businesses to invest in other countries, including Indonesia,” he said.

Zang said he had been impressed with Indonesia, and that it would be better suited for steel production than other countries he had visited including Iran.

Jamaludin said he was optimistic that the relocation plan would materialize soon. He added that this year Guo Feng would complete its survey and could begin developing a plant here next year.

The relocation would improve the competitiveness of Indonesian steel products, because the plant would use blast furnace technology, he said.

“Blast furnace machines are not new to China, but in Southeast Asia, this technology has not become popular yet.” (rdf)

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First lady to inaugurate `prosperous village" in Yogyakarta

Antara News, Wednesday, September 29, 2010 13:34 WIB

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - First Lady Ani Yudhoyono is scheduled to make a one-day working visit in Yogyakarta, to inaugurate a "prosperous village" program.

The "prosperous village" program is located near Sermo Dam, Hargotirto village, Kokap sub district, Kulon Progo District, Yogyakarta, and has been developed with the cooperation of Gadjah Mada University.

The First Lady is expected to present a car and five motorcycles to a representative of the university, and to symbolically plant a tree in the village.

Australia rebuilds eight public health centers in W Sumatra

Antara News, Wednesday, September 29, 2010 13:26 WIB

Padang, West Sumatera (ANTARA News) - The Australian Government helped rebuild eight public health centers (Puskesmas) damaged by the 7.9-magnitude quake in the West Sumatra on September 30, 2009.

That eight health centers were in Padang Pariaman district, Australian Charge d`Affaires Paul Robilliard said here on Wednesday.

The eight Puskesmas are located in Dauh Pauh Kampar Sikabu, Padang Alai, Koto Bangko, Batu Basa, Geringging river, Kayu Tanam and Kampung.

He said this assistance was to show the Australian government`s commitment to the long term improvement of health of the Indonesian people especially women and children.

Paul Robilliard was in West Sumatra until September 30, 2010 to inspect the implementation of the Australian government assistance to the province.

Paul will also visit other 39 schools damaged in the earth quake and organize assistance for their repair.

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Herbal Plants to be Cultivated in Perhutani Areas

Tempo Interactive, Tuesday, 28 September, 2010 | 20:41 WIB

TEMPO Interactive, Semarang: Agriculture Minister Suswono said herbal plant farmers can use the state forest company, Perhutani’s space to cultivate herbal plants. Suswono was responding to farmers’ complaints about the little area they had to work on. “Please contact the local Perhutani to use the land for herbal plantations,” Suswono said during a meeting dialog with farmers in Ungaran, Semarang, yesterday.

Suswono said Perhutani has a program called “Managing Forests Together with the People,” through which farmers are allowed to utilize Perhutani areas to plant herbal plants among the existing hard plants. Seman, a farmer from Karanganyar, complained about the lack of area for herbal plant cultivation. “If only the farmers had the space and enough capital, the welfare of medicinal plant farmers would improve,” he said.


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Bungo receives Rp3.21 billion grant from Japan

Antara News, Tuesday, September 28, 2010 21:16 WIB

Muarabungo, Jambi (ANTARA News) - The regional government of Bungo district, Jambi province, has received a grant worth Rp3.21 billion from Japan for agricultural development in the region, a regional official said.

Head of Bungo`s Food Crops and Horticulture Service Harmadji said on Tuesday that the funds provided by Japan would be used to develop the agricultural sector.

Apart from Bungo, there were several other districts in Indonesia which received the Japanese grant. They included Lombok Timor in West Nusa Tenggara, Purworejo and Tegal in Central Java.

"We are the only district in Sumatra which received the Japanese grant. This is something to be pride of by Bungo district," he said.

Australia launches website for earthquake safe house in Padang

Syofiardi Bachyul Jb, The Jakarta Post, Padang, West Sumatra | Tue, 09/28/2010 5:56 PM

The Australia Indonesia Facility for Disaster Reduction (AIFDR) has launched www.rumahamangempa.net, a website which provides information on an earthquake safe house in Padang, West Sumatra.

The launching was held in remembrance of the massive tremor that shook the city on Sept. 30 2009, damaging almost 250,000 houses and 7,000 public facilities.

“Given that West Sumatra is an earthquake-prone province, we expect the website will convey earthquake information to local people,” Australian charge d’affaires to Indonesia Paul Robilliard said during the ceremony.

The AIFDR will also promote the earthquake safe house on social networking websites, such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, he added.

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Govt plans to buy more Sukhoi jet fighters

Dicky Christanto, The Jakarta Post, Makassar | Tue, 09/28/2010 9:36 AM

The government will in the near future purchase at least six more Russian-built Sukhoi jet fighters to form a complete fighter squadron, the defense minister says.

“Our strategic plan for the 2010-2014 period is to buy more Sukhoi fighters so that we could have a squadron of them,” Defense Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro told reporters after the handing over ceremony of three Sukhoi SU-27 SKM fighters from Russia in Makassar, South Sulawesi, on Monday.

Purnomo said he was upbeat the plan would materialize soon given the country’s robust economy.

“Our state budget has reached more than Rp 1,000 trillion and our GDP is about five times that. I believe we will be able to complete our Sukhoi squadron.”

Alexander Ivanov, the Russian Ambassador to Indonesia said his government was more than ready to provide assistance to Indonesia to complete the existing Sukhoi fleet.

“We expect further cooperation with the Indonesian government regarding its plan to develop the Sukhoi squadron. We will provide any assistance required,” he said.

Three Sukhoi SU-27 SKM fighters were delivered by the manufacturer, Rosoboronexport Russia, to the Ministry of Defense on Monday.

The delivery of the last three fighters completed the purchase of six Sukhoi jet fighters, under an agreement signed by Jakarta and Moscow in 2008.

Indonesia now has 10 Sukhoi fighters and it will need at least six to eight more to form a squadron.

Secretary-general of the Defense Ministry Vice Marshall Eris Haryanto said the government has spent a total of US$ 335 million to purchase the six aircraft.

Air Force Chief of Staff Air Marshall Imam Sufaat said the Russian jet fighter had been able to perform beyond satisfactory level and therefore suited the air force in carrying out its duty to safeguard both the country’s air and land territory.

“The aircraft has been able to perform both air to air and air to ground striking maneuvers satisfactorily. Thus there will be no reason for us to doubt this aircraft to safeguard our country’s territory,” he said.

The newest Sukhoi is equipped with guided missile facilities, which have not been included in most of jet fighters in its class.

However, Imam said that right now none of the newly produced Sukhoi had its own weaponry system in place. “The weaponry system is sold separately from the aircraft. But this will be no problem for us since now we have been able to manufacture almost all of the aircraft’s weaponry systems. We are still in the middle of developing its missile,” he said.

Besides the Sukhoi, Indonesia, which has 43 air bases throughout the country, is also the home for the other two squadrons of jet aircraft, made up of the US F16 jet fighters and British Sky Hawks.

China wants more intensive defense cooperation with Indonesia

Antara News, Tuesday, September 28, 2010 11:17 WIB

Beijing (ANTARA News) - The Chinese government wants its defense industry cooperation with Indonesia to become stronger in the future considering that both nations already have a strategic partnership cooperation which includes the defense sector, a Chinese official said.

Director of State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defence (Sastind) Wang Yi Ren, said his side had formulated a draft on a memorandum of understanding between Indonesia and China on defense industry.

He made the remarks when receiving Indonesian Deputy Minister for Defense Affairs Sjafrie Sjamsoeddin.

"With the MoU, we view that the relations of the two countries in the defense, particularly in the defense industry will undergo rapid progress in the future," Wang said.

Therefore, China was waiting for Indonesia`s response soon regarding the MoU draft.
He said that China had defense industry cooperation with a number of developing countries such as Pakistan in the production of war planes.

"We are sure that with the capability we have, the defense industry cooperation with Indonesia would undergo rapid progress and make achievements," he added.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Tri Polyta Deal to Create Top Chemical Company

Jakarta Globe, Reuters & JG | September 26, 2010

Tri Polyta Indonesia, the country’s No. 1 maker of polypropylene resins, said on Saturday that it would acquire nonlisted petrochemical firm Chandra Asri in a $1.2 billion share swap to form the biggest player in the sector.

The companies are controlled by Indonesian tycoon Prajogo Pangestu through holding company Barito Pacific.

“We expect the deal to be completed by January 1, 2011,” said Tri Polyta’s director, Suryandi.

Polypropylene resin is a lightweight yet durable material used by manufacturers to create fibers and molds.

Barito owns 77.9 percent of Tri Polyta, which is listed on the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX), as well as 70 percent of Chandra Asri. Barito will hold a 71.6 percent stake of the combined company after the deal.

Suryandi said Chandra Asri’s shareholders would be issued 2.93 billion in new Tri Polyta stock worth $1.2 billion in exchange for their equity. He declined, however, to give an indicative price for the new shares.

Tri Polyta has appointed Deutsche Bank and Singapore’s DBS Group as advisers for the share swap deal.

Prajogo, a business tycoon who emerged during former President Suharto’s era, lost ownership of the two chemical companies amid the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis, but has since managed to claw back control of the firms.

Tri Polyta in 2009 booked a net profit of Rp 483 billion ($54.1 million), which marked a huge swing back to profitability after posting losses of Rp 13.75 billion the year before.

Shares in Tri Polyta soared 6.6 percent on Friday to close at Rp 3,250.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

RI, China ink agreement on forestry

Dicky Christanto, The Jakarta Post, Beijing | Sat, 09/25/2010 10:45 AM

Indonesian Forestry Minister Zulkilfli Hasan said the Indonesian government wanted closer cooperation with China to develop forest management, particularly in the use of bamboo and rattan.

“China has been widely known for its success in developing sustainable forest management. Its research and development division, in particular, is known for its success in developing the quality of non-timber products, such as bamboo and rattan,” Zulkifli said during a three-day visit to China recently.

“They know how to produce fine quality paper from bamboo while back home our capacity to use [bamboo and rattan] is still quite limited.”

Hadi Daryanto, director general for Production Forest Management said China had marketing ability.

“Their lamination technique is renowned and we should learn about it to add to the quality of our timber and non-timber products,” he said.

During the visit, the forestry ministry signed a five year agreement on forest management knowledge sharing. The China State Forestry Administration in Beijing was represented by Vice Minister Madame Yin Hong.

It was agreed to encourage the use of wood and non-wood products processing technology as well as biomass energy from sustainably managed forests. Also to carry out information exchange on forest land rehabilitation and social forestry.

The agreement also covered cooperation on wildlife and plant protection and the sustainable use of flora and fauna. Both sides agreed to promote forestry law enforcement and sustainable forest management and research.

Hadi said even before the agreement, China had assisted the Forestry Minister office, especially to promote legal timber trading.

“China’s authorities have warned the forestry ministry several times regarding illegal logging activities in the Papua region. Thus we have developed mutual cooperation long before this agreement,” he said.

The Indonesian Ambassador to China, Imron Cotan, said it was very strategic for Indonesia to work
with China to promote sustainable forest management because China was one of the world’s leaders in this field.

“With US$2.55 trillion of [Gross National Product] China has become recognized as one of the world’s new leaders. From the political perspective, there can be no major international problems discussed from now on without China,” he said. 

China has 1.25 million square kilometers of forested areas equivalent to 75 percent of Indonesia’s total and area. China therefore has one of the world’s largest forest areas.

China’s administration has developed environmentally friendly economic activities in or adjacent to forest areas in the form of community forest programs. Through these programs, people get to lease land from the state for 30 to 35 years. They can plant trees and gain profits from forestry products.

The Chinese government said that with such programs there was an increase in the volume of lands planted with trees by local people.

Bilateral cooperation between both administrations on forestry development was initiated in 1992 following the signing of agreements on forest resources management and conservation as well as research, training and extension work.

Unhan introduces disaster management program

The Jakarta Post | Sat, 09/25/2010 11:30 AM

JAKARTA: Indonesian Defense University (Unhan) introduced a new master study program on disaster management for national security.

Unhan, a state university under the Defense Ministry, said the new program was aimed at producing graduates to meet the need for experts who could help mitigate the impact of disasters and rehabilitate disaster-hit areas.

Unhan rector Maj. Gen. Syarifudin Tippe said Indonesia was wracked by many disasters. “Not many people realize the importance of understanding disasters, how to prepare for them, what to do when disasters strike and how it impacts the defense system,” he said in press release made available on Friday.

Applicants to the program are required to have a minimum TOEFL score of 500 and minimum Academic Potential Test score of 550. The program is open to members of the military and police corps as well as civilians.

Unhan said it would grant full scholarships to all students of the program, including covering the cost of field study to universities at home and abroad.

Every academic year, Unhan accepts between 20 and 30 students for each program. —JP

Friday, September 24, 2010

RI, Aussie special forces to hold joint exercise

Antara News, Friday, September 24, 2010 17:44 WIB

Denpasar, Bali (ANTARA News) - Indonesia`s Special Force (Kopassus) and Australia`s elite unit SAS will hold a joint anti-terrorism exercise in Bali soon.

The upcoming joint exercise had been planned for some time, Lt Col I Kadek A Atmawijaya, head of the Udayana/Military Regional Command IX`s information section, said here Friday.

The exercise would involve members of the Counter Terror Unit of the Kopassus Headquarters in Cijantung, East Jakarta, and Australian SAS personnel.

Key officers of the two special forces arrived in Denpasar a few days ago, and are currently conducting field coordination and command line equation.The anti-terror exercise would take place at several locations in Bali.

"We still do not know the exact scenarios but it will start at Nitimandala Renon square, Denpasar, and end at Ngurah Rai international airport," he said.

Bali is famous as a world-class tourist destination, he said. "It`s our common responsibility to safeguard it. In this case we will carry out our tasks in accordance with our functions, and we are currently in partnership with the Australian Army," he said.

Indonesian Student Wins International Award for Laser Plasma Research

Jakarta Globe, Kinanti Pinta Karana | September 24, 2010

Jakarta. Ali Khumaeni, an Indonesian student currently studying at Fukui University in Japan, received the highest honor at an international conference on Sept. 17 for his breakthrough in the field of laser plasma spectroscopy.

Ali Khumaeni won an international award for his
breakthrough research in laser plasma technology.
(Photo courtesy Ali Khumaeni)
He accepted the award for the best paper at the 6th International Conference on Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy held in Memphis, Tennessee.

The conference is the biggest in the field of laser plasma spectroscopy, and is held every two years.

It attracts hundreds of postgraduate students, LIBS experts, professors and corporate representatives from the fields of optics, lasers and imaging.

Ali, 27, told the Jakarta Globe in a telephone interview that it had taken two years of research before he was able to finish the winning paper.

“My professor in Fukui suggested that I do a powder analysis.

"We progressed gradually and finally we found the technique on how to use a laser to analyze powder plasma, the first known technique in the world,” Ali said.

He added that many industries had difficulties using laser plasma technology for powder analysis.

“Once powder is exposed to a laser, the material will be ruined, hence the atom cannot be analyzed, but my research has found a way to use the laser properly without ruining the atomic material,” Ali said.

“Now we can analyze, for example, the calcium content in powdered milk or the tiniest particle in face powder.”

Born in Kendal, Central Java, Ali said that he never imagined he would have the opportunity to study in Japan.

“I am a village boy, always have been. My village, Kendal, is a remote area in Central Java. I lived there until I graduated from senior high school because I had to help my parents work. We're not a rich family,” he said.

He first left home to study at state-owned Diponegoro University in Semarang, Central Java's capital.

“I studied physics and I was blessed to have been taught by amazing professors who inspired me to pursue a higher education here [in Japan],” he said.

In 2007, he received a scholarship from the Japanese government to study at Fukui University.

Ali said he would stay in Japan for another three to four years until he received his PhD in physics.

“As soon as I finish my PhD program, I will come back home to Indonesia and see my parents again in the village before deciding what to do next,” he said.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

US to give education assistance to Indonesia

Antara News, Thursday, September 23, 2010

Yogyakarta  (ANTARA News) - The United States government will give education assistance amounting to US$165 million to Indonesia for five years.

"The assistance will be focused on students exchange program and basic education development," US Ambassador to Indonesia Scot Marciel said here on Thursday.

Marciel made the remark during his general lecture at Gajah Mada University, and added that the US government would also promote better education for the people, both in Indonesia and in the United States.

"Our cooperation with Indonesia in the education field for the past 18 months was intensively made to step up the quality of education," Marciel said.

He said the US government this year would also open the opportunity for 700 students from Indonesia and other countries to study in the United States.

"The opportunity is given by hundreds of institutions including several colleges in the United States," Marciel said, admitting the the number of students from Indonesia and other countries in the US in the past few years had dropped drastically.

"It was because of the impact of economic crisis and other conditions in education in the United States," he said, adding that only around 14,000 foreign students including from Indonesia were studying in the US in the past 10 years, but at present there were about 7,000 students.

Therefore he said it was important for the country to make more intensive cooperation in education field with other countries, including Indonesia.

He said the US government would like to cooperate with Indonesia in various fields to overcome the problems of corruption, social issue, and climate change.

Earlier in the day the US envoy met with Yogyakarta Governor Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwono X to introduce himself as the new US ambassador to Indonesia.

"I met with Sri Sultan to introduce myself as the new US ambassador to Indonesia and for a dialog on cultural and education issues in Yogyakarta," Marciel said.

Indonesia's Sinar Mas Censured by Palm Oil Watchdog

Jakarta Globe, September 23, 2010

Sinar Mas has come under attack by Greenpeace who are campaigning against further expansion of forest industry and palm oil plantations in prime forest and peatlands that stores massive amount of carbon deposits. Palm oil industry watchdog, The Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil, said on its Web site its grievance panel had written to SMART and Golden Agri censuring the firms for the breaches uncovered by an audit. (AFP Photo/Romeo Gacad)

Jakarta. An industry body for sustainable palm oil has made its first public censure of a member, saying Indonesia’s Sinar Mas Agro Resources & Technology breached its principles and may face sanctions.

Sinar Mas Agro Resources & Technology, also known as SMART, last month released an independent audit after Greenpeace alleged SMART bulldozed high conservation value forests and damaged carbon-rich peatlands.

The audit gave SMART a mixed score card, highlighting some instances in which Indonesia’s environmental laws were breached.

The Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil, also known as RSPO, — an industry body of planters, green groups and consumers — said on its Web site its grievance panel had written to SMART and Golden Agri censuring the firms for the breaches uncovered by the audit.

SMART is a member of the RSPO but Golden Agri-Resources is not.

“In its letter to SMART and GAR, the panel finds there has been serious non-compliance with the RSPO code of conduct, specifically a failure by SMART to work towards implementation and certification of the RSPO principles and criteria,” it said.

In particular, RSPO principles on social and environmental impact assessments and peatland management have been infringed, it said.

“Members who have been found to not be in compliance and who continue to be in non-compliance with the RSPO regulations could ultimately face sanctions, including the suspension and, eventually, the termination, of their membership of the RSPO.”

The comments may be a blow to SMART’s aims to win back big palm oil buyers including Burger King, Nestle and Unilever, who have said they will stop buying from SMART because of environmental concerns.

The RSPO also urged GAR to stop publicly suggesting it was in the process of obtaining RSPO certification.

“GAR is not a member of the RSPO, nor has the RSPO yet received a membership application from the company. The Panel encourages GAR to submit a full and complete application for membership,” the statement said.

SMART said in a statement it would work toward the requirements set by the RSPO, including environmental impact assessments and conservation of deep peatlands.

Enormous amounts of climate-warming gases are released when deep peatlands are disturbed, and the deforestation of Indonesia’s extensive tropical forests led the World Bank to name it the world’s number three emitter in a 2007 report.

“We take the feedback of our stakeholders very seriously and this applies to the concerns of the RSPO, whom we are in touch with,” said Daud Dharsono, President Director of SMART.

Golden Agri referred queries to the SMART statement. SMART and Singapore-listed Golden Agri are controlled by the Widjaja family that founded Sinar Mas, a group with interests from plantations to property and finance.

Greenpeace welcomed the RSPO’s statement, saying RSPO should follow up on its reprimand by expelling SMART within four weeks if the company does not take action.

“Greenpeace is calling on other companies, like Cargill, to follow Unilever, Nestle and Kraft’s lead and cancel its palm oil contracts with Sinar Mas until it stops destroying rainforest and carbon rich peatlands,” said Greenpeace activist Bustar Maitar.


End of deal: A Burger King franchise is seen on Sept. 2, 2010, in Los Angeles. The US hamburger chain has said it will stop buying palm oil from an Indonesian company accused of destroying rainforests. – AP/Damian Dovarganes

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WHO assistance to create healthy, pleasant traditional markets

Antara News, Thursday, September 23, 2010 00:10 WIB

Gunung Kidul, Yogyakarta (ANTARA News) - The World Health Organization (WHO) has provided 2,400 US dollars to support a program to improve the sanitary health infrastructure of the Argosari traditional market in Wonosari, Gunung Kidul district.

A Health Ministry official, Wilfred M Purba, said here Wednesday the financial assistance was given under a cooperation agreement between the ministry and WHO.

"The program has a non-physical aspect , namely to change the general public`s perception of traditional markets as disorderly, untidy, dirty establishments so that they would be able to compete with modern markets which were already beginning to operate in Gunung Kidul district." he said.

He said the physical assistance in the form of infrastructure was given based on the traditional market`s needs determined by market`s stakeholders and the Gunung Kidul district government.

According to Wilfred, the best way to create a healthy traditional market was changing the market stakeholders behavior, namely the behavior of the people selling their goods in the market, the market visitors, the market traders` association and the market management.

He said altering the stakeholders` behavior was important to change the traditional market`s image in addition to the provision of supporting facilities needed to keep the market healthy, clean, neat and pleasant to see.

"The direction of the traditional market can be used for buying and selling transactions and tourism market so that visitors besides buying what they need can also engage in recreation," he said.

He said the Argosari traditional market as one of tens of traditional markets in Indonesia which turned into model traditional markets.

A WHO Indonesia officer, Tri Prasetyo, said the aim of the programs was also to anticipate the spread of avian influenza.

"The interest of market users will possible decrease if directly talking about the anticipation of avian influenza so that we have delivered to the people about a healthy market as general," he said.

He said that the traditional market program had been implemented since July 2009 and it would end on 2011. "Now we are coming to the phase of training the market management." he said.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

RI, Russia to establish economic forum

The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Wed, 09/22/2010 9:44 AM

The governments of Indonesia and Russia will soon sign an agreement to set up a bilateral economic forum to address issues on economic and trade cooperation between the two countries, an official says.

Trade Minister Mari Elka Pangestu said Tuesday the forum would function as a place for Jakarta and Moscow to discuss and exchange potentials and constraints in boosting trade and investment.

“Businessmen from Indonesia barely recognize the huge economic potential of Russia and vice versa,” she said at her Jakarta office.

Mari said that among the constraints that currently hindered the growth of Indonesia’s exports to Russia was limited access to export finance from either Russian or Indonesian export facilities. The absence of direct transportation to send goods from Indonesia to Russia, had become a major concern, she added.

According to Trade Ministry data, the value of Indonesia’s exports to Russia in the first half of this year reached US$242 million, while the value of imports was $540.3 million, bringing the deficit to $298 million.

In 2009, total bilateral Indonesia-Russia trade volume hit $774 million with exports reaching $316 million while the deficit was $142 million.

Mari said the Indonesia-Russia economic forum was very important in facilitating direct talks on Russian import duty regulations. Russia was not a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), so many regulations were different from those in WTO member-states, she added.

She said that Russia was a potential market for various Indonesian products, including palm oil, cacao and tea. She added that Russia not only was a large market, but it also had strong purchasing power.

“We are now still discussing which sectors should be prioritized in this cooperation. We will also listen to opinions from businessmen in both countries. The fact is, Russia is very upbeat with this cooperation,” she explained.

Robust economic performance in recent years has made Indonesia an appealing partner for economic cooperation. Indonesia’s competitiveness index rating has climbed 10 places to 44 out of 139 countries in the Global Competitiveness Index (CGI) 2010-2011. (rdf)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Czech tire company to launch US$1.2 bln Indonesia plant

Antara News, Tuesday, September 21, 2010 16:48 WIB

Jakarta (ANTARA News/Asia Pulse) - Tire maker Matador Tires Group, from the Czech Republic, plans to build a tire factory in Indonesia with an investment of US$1.2 billion.

Aziz Pane, chairman of the Indonesian Association of Tire Producers, said Matador is interested in producing tires for armored cars and heavy duty trucks using German technology.

Tires for heavy equipment and armored cars have potential export market, Pane said.

RI, Japan explore forest products processing cooperation

Antara News, Monday, September 20, 2010 23:50 WIB | Science & Tech

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Japanese government is exploring forest products processing cooperation with the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) in the country as world log prices had been increasing.

"We are exploring cooperation between the two countries, and Japan had asked Indonesian loggers to manage their forests," LIPI`s innovation center chief, Bambang Subiyanto, said here, Monday.

The Japanese wood processing initiative was triggered by the increasing log prices.

Japan has been importing wood from other countries to preserve its natural forests and meet the country`s wood consumption.

According to a statistical data, about 24.081 hectares or more than 60 percent of the Japanese mainland is still in the form of forests due to tight forestry control regulations.

The Japanese national forest management is under the related agencies namely, Forestry Agency, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fishery covering 7.8 million hectares.

The Japanese government`s main policy in the forestry sector is utilizing its forest resources for the protection of watersheds and soil conservation, biodiversity conservation of natural resources, and needs for timber and other forest products for the Japanese people without disrupting the protection function.

Monday, September 20, 2010

China pushes for business and cultural cooperation with RI

Desy Nurhayati, The Jakarta Post, Ubud, Bali | Mon, 09/20/2010 10:22 AM

China is looking forward to developing new areas of cooperation with Indonesia as the two countries celebrate their 60th anniversary of bilateral relations this year.

Fields of cooperation worthy of further development include trade and investment and tourism and culture, delegation chief Cai Jinbiao said during the group’s visit to Ubud on Saturday.

The delegation came to Indonesia to attend a public seminar “Indonesia and China after 60 years of diplomatic relations” to be held in Jakarta this Monday when scholars will engage in intense discussion of new ideas to promote bilateral bonds.

Delegates from China include representatives from the Chinese People’s Institute of Foreign Affairs, while the Indonesian counterparts are scholars from the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).

Jinbiao, the vice president of the Chinese People’s Institute of Foreign Affairs, told The Jakarta Post that in the past 60 years, especially after China applied its openness policy, the bilateral relationship had been developing by leaps and bounds through various forms of partnership.

“We have reached the stage where our relationship could be promoted to an even higher level.

The scope of our trade and investment relationships is widening. I am confident that there will be more investment in the future,” he said.

Both countries expect to achieve US$30 billion in trade in 2010 and $50 billion in 2014.

The two countries have also established strategic cultural partnerships nurtured by exchange visits.

Regarding tourism, Indonesia has become a destination for many Chinese travelers, Jinbiao added. “There is a growing number of Chinese tourists coming here, and we’d like to see more. We also welcome Indonesian tourists to visit our country,” he said.

Advancing bilateral relations not only serves the interests of both nations, but also promotes relations between China and ASEAN, and broader development across the region, he said, acknowledging that Indonesia has played a very important role in the regional grouping.

With the FTA between China and ASEAN set for implementation this year, both parties have explored the benefits of declining import tax rates and increased trade volumes, Jinbiao said.

Year-on-year trade between China and ASEAN increased 49.6 percent in the first seven months of this year, reaching US$161 billion, with ASEAN enjoying a $7.54 billion surplus.