Interview – Agustinus Tampang
Occupation: marketing executive
What progress has Indonesia made since it became democratic eight years ago?
The economy has improved after it was hit by the (1998) financial crisis.
Has democracy generally been a positive force?
No, it hasnâ€™t. People are too free to say what they want and many people take part in demonstrations when thereâ€™s no clear reason why they should be demonstrating, or taking part.
What are the challenges?
There are so many. We still need a lot of time for the economy to fully recover, and when itâ€™s back to where it was before the economic crisis, other sectors will automatically improve.
Is Indonesia a confident member of the international community?
Our president has a good relationship with other countries, and I think heâ€™s doing a lot of good for us internationally.
Should the country be taking a more proactive stance regionally?
Indonesia still has lots of problems to deal with internally, but for sure it should also be taking proactive steps on regional issues.
What three things would change the country dramatically, for the better?
Having strong leadership, a robust economy and solid security.
Whatâ€™s the biggest global threat right now?
AIDS. Itâ€™s everywhere and has killed so many people. (BT/PO)