We at AIYA hope everybody had a safe and happy Idulfitri celebration, and wish the Republic of Indonesia a very happy 68th birthday. Selamat membaca!
In the news
- The biggest news story in Indonesia this week was undoubtedly the arrest of the chief of the country’s upstream oil and gas regulator, SKK Migas, by the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK).
- ANZ is said to be looking to sell its stake in Bank Panin to Japan’s Mizuho, according to media reports.
- The FT’s Ben Bland (@benjaminbland) has a terrific feature on the state of Indonesia’s presidential election cycle.
- Indonesia’s central bank—which has the unenviable task of having to deal with high inflation, slowing economic growth and a weakening Rupiah—left official interest rates on hold yesterday. The Australian’s Jakarta corro Peter Alford has some good analysis of Indonesia’s fiscal situation.
- Reuters interviewed Finance Minister M. Chatib Basri, and he had some interesting things to say about the 2014 national budget and the temptations of protectionism.
- As Schapelle Corby looks to be heading for parole, Fairfax’s Michael Bachelard (@mbachelard) says that maybe it’s ‘time to let go of our decade-long obsession and finally just leave [her] alone.’
- ANU Indonesian studies alumna Hannah Purdy has a great piece in Inside Indonesia about the cultural significance of Balinese arak, which has made headlines in Australia for all the wrong reasons lately.
- Some encouraging environmental news: Al Jazeera reports from South Sulawesi on a community project rehabilitating ecologically vital mangrove forests.
Jobs and events
- Tonight, Sydney: leading expert on radical Islam, Solahudin, will appear in conversation the Lowy Institute’s (@_DaveMcRae_) to talk about the new English translation of his book The Roots of Terrorism in Indonesia: from Darul Islam to Jema’ah Islamiyah, a highly-regarded history of militant jihadism in Indonesia. 6:00 to 7:30pm at Gleebooks in Glebe, for more information see the Lowy Institute’s website.
- The Canberra launch of Solahudin’s book was held at the ANU on Wednesday—the Lowy Institute has helpfully put the audio of the event online.
- This weekend, Perth: the Perth Indonesian Film Festival, organised by the Balai Bahasa Indonesia Perth, is showing some great Indonesian movies. Get all the details on their website.
- Sunday night, Darwin: beloved Indonesian six-piece retro band White Shoes and the Couples Company will perform on Sunday night at the Darwin Festival—details here.
- Applications to be part of the inaugural Conference of Australian and Indonesian Youth (CAUSINDY) in Canberra on 17-20 October are still open.
Tomorrow, 17 August, is the 68th anniversary of the proclamation of the Republic of Indonesia by Soekarno and Mohammad Hatta. Tempo magazine has special edition full of interesting historical stories for the occasion.
We wish you all a happy Hari Kemerdekaan with this great video of students at Marlborough Primary School in Melbourne singing Indonesia Raya, the Indonesian national anthem, to friends at a Jakarta madrasah via videolink.