Introspection, not revenge, needed over loss of RIM to Malaysia


Investment Coordinating Board Chairman Gita Wirjawan is right to ask why indeed would a company like RIM that has exponentially more consumers in Indonesia and Malaysia choose the latter for its production base. It makes little financial and political sense.

Gita is also right to speculate that it may be because Indonesia last year required RIM to set up a regional network aggregator, or data center, in the country, establish at least 40 authorized customer care centers, facilitate lawful interception of its encrypted BlackBerry Messenger services by officials and filter pornographic content.

But he does not ask and speculate on the important questions: Were there other factors behind RIM’s decision to locate its base in Malaysia? Is Indonesia’s corruption and lack of legal certainty a factor? What about the red tape in setting something like this up here, compared to Malaysia? And how much of a concern should IT and communications-related companies have over an Information Minister as mercurial as Tifatul?

But at least Gita did make an effort at asking. The Industry Minister just went straight for the revenge bit. Companies make business decisions based on what’s good for their business. Being close to their market and winning the goodwill of their largest markets are very important factors for businesses in their decision-making processes. Unspun is sure that RIM, and Bosch for that matter, considered the pros and cons of Indonesia and Malaysia carefully and the sad truth, for them, is that the cons in Indonesia outweigh the very strong pro of a huge consumer base in Indonesia.

Instead of acting with the fury of a woman scorned the Indonesian ministers would do well to do, as the late Suharto would have advised, some introspection on what Indonesia needs to change to make itself more attractive as an investment destination. Or at least to mitigate the cons that help outweigh its pros of a huge population and market, a stable and growing economy and vast store of resources.

See also: Indonesian Government threatens RIM with additional taxes over Malaysia decision

An extract of the news as it appears in The Jakarta Globe today:

Govt Upset as RIM Chooses Malaysia for Base

The decision of BlackBerry maker Research In Motion, to set up its production base for Asia in Malaysia is upsetting some senior Indonesian officials and prompting them to consider hitting back at the Canadian company.

“Why did they choose to build in Malaysia?” said Gita Wirjawan, the chairman of the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM), suggesting Indonesia’s large market should have been a factor.

Gita said the market for BlackBerrys in Malaysia — less than 400,000 units sold annually — was small compared to the Indonesian market — estimated at 4 million units a year.

He said he believed that Jakarta’s demand for the company to establish a data center here was behind the decision.

RIM spokesman Oliver Pilgerstorfer said the company was unable to comment on the matter.

Last year, Indonesia required RIM to set up a regional network aggregator, or data center, in the country, establish at least 40 authorized customer care centers, facilitate lawful interception of its encrypted BlackBerry Messenger services by officials and filter pornographic content.

German company Bosch recently announced it was planning to build a solar-panel plant in Malaysia, even though Indonesia was its target market, Gita said. The BKPM chairman proposed tariff barriers for companies that import luxury goods rather than produce them in Indonesia.

He received some support from Industry Minister M.S. Hidayat, who said the government should penalize producers with a large market share in Indonesia who import their products.

“I suggest we impose an additional value-added tax, or luxury tax, for such goods, so that people would choose to invest here instead,” Hidayat said.

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6 thoughts on “Introspection, not revenge, needed over loss of RIM to Malaysia

  1. You are right, instead of thinking about revenge, the Head of BKPM and Minister of Industry should
    think what are the reasons that make RIM and Bosch invest in Malaysia and not in Indonesia.
    That way they can make necessary improvements so that in the future others would want to choose
    Indonesia.

    PS: I would like to post this article on my blog. I hope you wouldn’t mind. Thank you.

    Like

  2. Semua issue menjadi propaganda politik murahan dari Utusan …. pantaslah jika banyak dari kami memusuhi negara ini … A trouble maker of Asia …. .. hahahaha
    ——
    Malaysia pilihan

    Ketika berada di Jakarta baru-baru ini, Awang tertarik dengan laporan akhbar berhubung keputusan syarikat pengeluar telefon bimbit pintar Blackberry untuk membina pusat pengeluaran di Malaysia berbanding Indonesia.

    Keputusan itu mencetuskan isu di Indonesia dan pihak berkuasa negara berkenaan memberikan reaksi terkejut dan ada yang mencadangkan supaya diambil tindakan balas ke atas Research In Motion (RIM) iaitu pengeluar Blackberry yang berpangkalan di Canada.

    Akhbar Jakarta Globe terbitan Khamis lalu menyiarkan di muka depan dengan tajuk Govt Upset as RIM Choose Malaysia for Base diikuti laporan utama di seksyen bisnes keesokkannya.

    Ketua Badan Penyelarasan Penanaman Modal (BKPM) Indonesia, Gita Wirjawan berkata, pihaknya kesal dengan keputusan RIM antaranya kerana penjualan Blackberry di negara terbesar di Asia Tenggara itu adalah jauh lebih besar iaitu empat juta unit setahun berbanding 400,000 unit setahun di Malaysia.

    Jumlah pasaran di Indonesia juga lebih besar dengan penduduk berjumlah 240 juta manakala Malaysia tidak sampai 30 juta orang.

    Turut disentuh dalam laporan tersebut ialah langkah sebuah lagi syarikat dari terkemuka dari Jerman, Bosch untuk membina kilang solar panel di Malaysia walaupun sasaran utama pasaran adalah di Indonesia. Keputusan kedua-dua syarikat antarabangsa itu mencetuskan rasa tidak puas hati beberapa pihak di Indonesia.

    Dalam pada itu, ada penganalisis di sana mengkritik kerajaan Indonesia kerana kelemahan tertentu dalam menarik keyakinan RIM dan Bosch. Ini meliputi soal perundangan dan persekitaran lebih kondusif untuk pelabur besar. Indonesia sedang berusaha untuk meminta RIM mengkaji semula keputusan tersebut.

    Awang boleh faham reaksi pihak Indonesia dalam isu tersebut. Itu lumrah dalam dunia persaingan. Tujuan Awang paparkan hal ini bukan untuk melahirkan rasa tidak puas hati terhadap reaksi Indonesia. Tetapi yang lebih penting perkembangan tersebut mempunyai makna besar buat rakyat Malaysia.

    Keputusan RIM dan Bosch menjadikan Malaysia destinasi pelaburan mencerminkan keyakinan terhadap negara kita. Pada Awang, ini semua bukan berlaku secara kebetulan. Ia disumbangkan hasil dasar kerajaan yang jelas dan konsisten, strategi ekonomi yang lebih menarik selain kestabilan negara.

    Lalu teringat tindakan ketua pembangkang, Anwar Ibrahim yang agresif memburuk-burukkan Malaysia di luar negara termasuk kononnya negara ini tidak lagi mendapat keyakinan pelabur asing. Tidak perlu untuk panjang lebar melawan tohmahan Anwar. Pemilihan RIM dan Bosch adalah jawapannya.

    http://www.utusan.com.my/utusan/info.asp?y=2011&dt=0911&pub=Utusan_Malaysia&sec=Rencana&pg=re_04.htm

    Like

  3. “Semua issue menjadi propaganda politik murahan dari Utusan …. pantaslah jika banyak dari kami memusuhi negara ini … A trouble maker of Asia …. .. hahahaha”

    Kalau betul kenapa jutaan rakyat Indonesia rela melintasi lautan dan hutan untuk datang ke Malaysia? Sesekali lihatlah muka sendiri di kaca.

    Like

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