Matthew's Feed
Apr 23, 2012

S&P warns Indonesia over policy moves, holds rating

JAKARTA, April 23 (Reuters) – Ratings agency Standard and
Poor’s sent Indonesia a warning on Monday over recent policy
“slippage” under President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, holding its
sovereign credit rating below investment grade rather than
raising it as many expected.

Although S&P retained a positive outlook on its Indonesia
rating and lauded record first-quarter foreign direct investment
figures released earlier in the day, it singled out policies in
the key mining sector and failure to approve an immediate fuel
price hike as worrisome developments.

Apr 12, 2012

Indonesia’s industry minister wants mining export tax soon

JAKARTA, April 12 (Reuters) – Indonesia should quickly
impose a tax on mining exports, the industry minister said on
Thursday in comments likely to worry miners in the world’s top
exporter of thermal coal and tin.

Government officials have previously said a 25 percent tax
on mining exports is being considered for this year and a 50
percent tax for next year, though miners and industry analysts
have speculated that such plans are likely to be toned down.

Apr 2, 2012

Indonesia fuel price fight bolsters Golkar ahead of 2014 polls

JAKARTA (Reuters) – Indonesia’s Golkar Party has emerged from a policy fight over whether to raise subsidized fuel prices less tainted than its main coalition partner, the Democrat Party, and voters are likely to take note ahead of elections in 2014.

A parliamentary vote on Friday to delay raising fuel prices by 33 percent and instead grant the government authority under certain conditions to raise prices later saddles President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s Democrat Party with an unpopular decision down the line.

Apr 2, 2012

Indonesia fuel price fight bolsters Golkar ahead of 2014 polls

JAKARTA, April 2 (Reuters) – Indonesia’s Golkar Party has
emerged from a policy fight over whether to raise subsidised
fuel prices less tainted than its main coalition partner, the
Democrat Party, and voters are likely to take note ahead of
elections in 2014.

A parliamentary vote on Friday to delay raising fuel prices
by 33 percent and instead grant the government authority under
certain conditions to raise prices later saddles President
Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s Democrat Party with an unpopular
decision down the line.

Mar 9, 2012

Indonesia stands ground with foreign miners

JAKARTA (Reuters) – Indonesia’s government offered a clearer view on Friday of a new regulation that limits foreign ownership in mines to no more than 49 percent, saying the rule applies to existing as well as new contracts.

The comments by senior officials in the Ministry of Energy and Minerals could unnerve foreign companies owning mines in Indonesia, including Australian miners who have played down the impact of the rule signed last month by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

Mar 9, 2012

Eyeing resource wealth, Indonesia taps foreign miners

JAKARTA, March 9 (Reuters) – Indonesia’s government
offered a clearer view on Friday of a new regulation that limits
foreign ownership in mines to no more than 49 percent, saying
the rule applies to existing as well as new contracts.

The comments by senior officials in the Ministry of Energy
and Minerals could unnerve foreign companies owning mines in
Indonesia, including Australian miners who have played down the
impact of the rule signed last month by President Susilo Bambang
Yudhoyono.

Mar 8, 2012

Indonesia says mine rules not just aimed at Freeport

JAKARTA, March 8 (Reuters) – A new Indonesian
regulation that changes the rules on foreign ownership of mines
applies to all foreign companies and is not aimed specifically
at the largest of those, Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc
, the deputy energy and mining minister said on Thursday.

Indonesia has substantial mineral wealth and is the world’s
top exporter of thermal coal and tin, but attention has focused
on Freeport since news on Wednesday of the regulation which
could deter fresh investment in the sector.

Feb 23, 2012

Cyclists risk life and limb to beat Jakarta jams

JAKARTA, Feb 23 (Reuters) – Traffic in Indonesia’s
capital snarls so badly during rush hour that even motorbikes
face gridlock and to get ahead a group of commuters have taken
up an extreme sport: cycling to work.

Their logic is simple. It makes more sense to inhale the
fumes and risk being flattened by a vehicle than it does to sit
in a car or a taxi for hours going nowhere fast.

Dec 21, 2011

Special Report: Phantom clinics bleed millions from Medicare

MIAMI/ATLANTA (Reuters) – By the time authorities busted a fake AIDS clinic in Miami, it had bilked Medicare of more than $4.5 million (2.8 million pounds). Still, the man behind the scheme remained far ahead of the agents pursuing him.

Michel De Jesus Huarte, a 40-year-old Cuban-American, hadn’t simply avoided arrest. He had hatched a plan to steal millions more from Medicare by forming at least 29 other shell companies – paper-only firms with no real operations. Each time, he would keep his name out of any corporate records. Other people – some paid by Huarte, some whose identities had been stolen – would be listed in incorporation papers.

Nov 14, 2011

Analysis: Views harden in Jefferson bankruptcy blame game

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (Reuters) – When the commissioners of Alabama’s Jefferson County emerged from a closed session last Wednesday to take their seats at the dais in the wood-paneled hall of the county’s 80-year-old courthouse, few expected drama.

Most likely, the five elected officials would vote to extend talks with creditors over the county’s $3.14 billion sewerage project debt. After all, they had been talking with Wall Street banks and other creditors for more than three years and had agreed to a framework for an agreement in September.