Aceh Investment Forum 2017 Kicks off

Investment Board Coordinating (BKPM) head Thomas Lembong (center), Aceh governor Irwandi Yusuf (left) and Aceh investment agency head Iskandar pose for a photograph during the launch of the Aceh Investment Forum 2017 in Jakarta on Nov. 16. (JP/Stefani Ribka)

The Aceh Investment Forum 2017 kicked off at Shangri-La Hotel in Jakarta on Thursday to boost investment, trade and tourism sectors in the northern province of Indonesia.

Governor Irwandi Yusuf said despite implementing the sharia system, the province has been very open to national and international investment, especially in four sectors: agribusiness, tourism, infrastructure and business centers.

“At the moment, Aceh is focusing on its economic development through the improvement of people’s income, construction of strategic projects and opening access to remote areas, but respecting the environment,” he said in his opening speech.

“We’re seriously committed to making Aceh a major investment destination in the country,” he added.

Aceh is known for its diving sites, cultural cities, Saman dance, as well as Arabica Gayo coffee.

It is scheduled to kick off the groundbreaking of the Arun special economic zone in Lhokseumawe next December.

In the past five years, investment in Aceh accounted for Rp 21 trillion, 75 percent of which came from domestic investors, with the remaining from foreign investors, mostly from China and Malaysia, according to the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM).

Around 100 representatives of private and state firms as well as international delegates worldwide, especially from the Middle East, attended the event held by the Aceh provincial government. James Riyadi of Lippo Group and delegates from Japan, New Zealand, Palestine, Jordan and Sudan were among the attendees.