Introducing Aljosja van Dorssen
I have become very fond of Indonesia when I lived in Singapore during the period 1997-2008. I then was partner at A.T. Kearney responsible for selling and delivering engagements in the financial services practice in South East Asia. Rather then helping companies grow and expand, they needed to be restructured as a result of the unfolding Asian crises in 1997-1998. I led the 3-year restructuring of the Central Bank of Thailand, where the Asian crisis started.
In Indonesia I was involved in the consolidation program of the State Banks in Indonesia, which was desired by the Ministry of Finance. We recommended that four banks should be merged, which became Bank Mandiri, now the leading bank in Indonesia. The crisis was long and deep in Indonesia and lasted till 2003. This difficult period coincided with the most remarkable journey of Indonesia itself, from strong centralized governance to democracy even at the village level!
It is not only the common history that we as Dutch people have with Indonesia. There is so much more, including the amazing size, its immense diversity in cultures and food, its beautiful scenery of tropical beaches, volcanoes, mountains, underwater coral reefs and marine life and off course last, but not least, its very friendly, genuine and immensely hospitable people. I always enjoy working and traveling in this amazing country. In addition, I am an avid golfer and diver, and Indonesia offers tremendous opportunities on both fronts! For peace of mind and relaxation, I regularly choose Bali as the preferred destination, and I very much appreciate the laid back lifestyle there.
During the last few years, I have returned to my former consulting firm Asia Value Partners, which is also actively pursuing strategy and operational consulting engagements in Indonesia. One of our current initiatives is to establish a Municipal Infrastructure Finance Facility (MIFF) in Indonesia in order to reduce the enormous backlog in infrastructure investments.
The concept involves the issuance of long term Rupiah bonds in the capital market, after which the proceeds will be passed on as a pool of loans to local and regional governments for infrastructure investments and we are pursuing this together with our local partner Dr Ilham Habibie, who is the son of the third President of Indonesia.
I have a strong desire for the relationship between Indonesia and The Netherlands to remain strong at the highest level, to cross fertilize business opportunities where possible and to further enhance cultural and educational exchanges where valuable. With much pleasure, I have therefore served on the Board of the INS since 2013, taking responsibility for our patrons and pursuing the establishment of our sister organization in Indonesia.