Aburizal Bakrie

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Aburizal Bakrie
Aburizal Bakrie - March 2011.jpeg
Leader of Golkar
In office
9 October 2009 – 31 December 2015
Preceded byJusuf Kalla
Succeeded bySetya Novanto
Personal details
Born (1946-11-15) 15 November 1946 (age 72)
Indonesia Jakarta, Indonesia
Political partyGolkar
Spouse(s)Tatty Murnitriati
ChildrenAnindya Noverdian Bakrie
Anindhita Anestya Bakrie
Anindra Ardiansyah Bakrie
Alma materBandung Institute of

Aburizal Bakrie (born 15 November 1946) is an Indonesian politician, and widely recognised as one of the most successful pribumi (native Indonesian) businessmen in Indonesia.[1] From 2004 until 2005 Bakrie served as Indonesia's Coordinating Minister for Economy.[2][3] From 2005 until 2009 he served as Coordinating Minister for People's Welfare.[4] Since 2009, Bakrie served as the Chairman of the Golkar Party up to late 2014, and resumed chairmanship in May 2015.[5]

Early life and education[edit]

Bakrie attended the Bandung Institute of Technology where he obtained a degree in electrical engineering in 1973.[6]


Business career[edit]

In 1972 Bakrie joined PT Bakrie & Brothers Tbk known today as the Bakrie Group, the conglomerate founded by his late father Achmad Bakrie [id], which prospered much like the rest of the Indonesian economy during the Soeharto presidency.[7] The Bakrie Group conducts business in agriculture, real estate, trade, shipping, banking, insurance, media, manufacturing, construction, and mining. Aburizal Bakrie, the eldest of four siblings was the chairman of the family enterprise from 1999 to 2004. In 1998 the Asian economic crisis challenged Bakrie's control of the conglomerate, from which he emerged victorious after a successful refinancing process in 2000.[8]

Public offices[edit]

From 1991 to 1995 Bakrie served two consecutive terms as the President of the ASEAN Business Forum and two consecutive terms from 1994 to 2004 as the President of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (aka Kadin).[9] As a member of the Golkar party Bakrie was running to become Golkar's candidate for the presidency in 2004.

Coordinating Minister for Economy[edit]

In 2004 Bakrie retired from PT Bakrie & Brothers Tbk before being named Coordinating Minister for Economy.[9] The appointment by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono was initially viewed with some reservation.[10] Shortly after being named to the cabinet of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, Bakrie set in motion a new government policy calling for a 3% reduction of Indonesians living in poverty, by reducing fuel subsidies in exchange for financial support to approximately 6 million people.[11] Bakrie argued the government's need to gradually increase fuel prices to keep fuel subsidies from busting its budget, while bringing the cost of fuel closer to international levels.[12] By October 2005 and after two price hikes, the cost of fuel increased by 126%.[13] Standard & Poor's rated the hike as an encouraging move to relieve immediate pressure on the country's fiscal position and external balance.[14]

In a move to stem Indonesia's declining output of crude oil, Bakrie weighed in[15] to end a standoff between ExxonMobil Corporation and PT Pertamina.[16] The companies had been at odds for many years, following their dispute over operational and profit sharing issues in the Cepu Block oil fields project,[17] the OPEC member's biggest oil discovery on Java in decades. The previous year Bakrie pledged that the new government wanted to resolve the Cepu and other disputes involving international companies, in a show of its commitment to improving Indonesia's investment climate.[18]

Coordinating Minister for People's Welfare[edit]

After a reshuffling of the cabinet in 2005, Bakrie was appointed Coordinating Minister for People's Welfare. In May 2008 Bakrie announced the handout of $1.52 billion to nearly 19 million low income households as part of a direct cash relief program[19] aimed to cushion the blow of the fuel increase.[20]

Chairman of Golkar party[edit]

In 2009 Bakrie was elected as the Chairman of Golkar party at Golkar Party Congress in Pekanbaru, Riau, Indonesia after defeating Surya Paloh, Yuddy Chrisnandi and Hutomo Mandala Putra. In May 2010, he successfully formed and was elected the leader of a majority parliamentary coalition with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's party.

Sidoardjo mudflow disaster[edit]

Bakrie's name has been mentioned in reference with the Sidoarjo mud flow that erupted on 29 May 2006 in Sidoarjo, a regency of Eastern Java, causing significant devastation to the environment and loss of life.[21] Scientists are divided over the cause that triggered the mud flow.[22] One side is claiming it was a natural occurrence caused by a 6.3-magnitude earthquake that occurred two days earlier near Yogyakarta,[23] while the other side and government confirmed the drilling practices of the PT Lapindo Brantas, a company in which Bakrie's family was a controlling shareholder, triggered the mudflow. The media coverage as a result remains mixed.[24]

Although environmental groups urged Indonesia's government to revoke the drilling license of PT Lapindo Brantas for environmental mismanagement,[25] a three-year police investigation into the incident ended with the case being dropped. According to the Jakarta Globe, Effendi Simbolon, a legislator from the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle PDI-P and deputy chairman of House of Representatives Commission VII, which oversees mines and energy affairs, said that "the criticism of Bakrie, whose family controls the company that is widely blamed for the disaster, was unwarranted, politicized and based largely on jealousy."[26]

A 2013 report indicated that for nearly seven years the mudflow had been wreaking havoc in the livelihoods of Porong residents in particular and on the Sidoarjo economy as a whole. The mudflow had also buried more than 600 hectares of land, displacing 39,700 people and submerging three subdistricts, 12 villages, 11,241 buildings and 362 hectares of rice fields.[27]

Presidential elections 2014[edit]

In the fall of 2010 media coverage started to indicate that Bakrie was seeking to become the Golkar Party's presidential candidate in Indonesia's 2014 Presidential election.[28][29] Since then, Bakrie repeatedly expressed his desire to be nominated as Golkar's presidential candidate.[30] Media reports also suggested the Golkar Party had already commenced its search for a running mate to team up with Bakrie,[31] introducing names like Sri Sultan Hamengkubuwana X the current Governor of Yogyakarta,[32] Pramono Anung the Secretary General of the Indonesian Democratic Party and Deputy House Speaker, Dahlan Iskan the State Enterprises Minister, as well as Edhie Baskoro Yudhoyono the youngest son of Indonesia's current President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.[33]

Bakrie's early nomination was met with significant criticism as some party members favoured a caucus to first determine the mechanisms for naming the party's candidate.[34][35] The head of the Golkar Party advisory board, Akbar Tanjung, criticised the decision earlier in October 2011, when the party congress chose Bakrie as the preferred candidate without allowing other people to be nominated. Tanjung called the process "undemocratic and said it denied other members the right to pursue the nomination". This criticism was echoed by "other members, including some at the regional level".[34] Bakrie responded to the criticism by saying that they were "political attacks" and was described by The Jakarta Post as "shrugging off" the criticism.[36] Others however pointed out the need to settle on their presidential candidate well ahead of the 2014 election, citing Indonesia's sheer geographic footprint with sprawling provinces and a population expected to reach 248 million this year.[citation needed]

On 29 June 2012 at Golkar's National Leadership meeting in Bogor, Bakrie was declared the Golkar Party's 2014 Presidential candidate.[37][38] In his acceptance speech Bakrie said "Pleading for guidance from God almighty, the faith to build a more developed Indonesia, a strong will and support from all of you, with humility I officially and openly accept this nomination."[39] In an attempt to end speculation about a possible running mate for Bakrie[40] Golkar's Deputy chairman Agung Laksono ruled out the selection of a vice-presidential candidate until 2013.[41]

Recent opinion polls show Bakrie trailing behind other presidential hopefuls[42] including former general Prabowo Subianto (Chief Patron of the Great Indonesia Movement Party) and former President Megawati Sukarnoputri, daughter of Indonesia's first President Sukarno.[39][43]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Executive Profile & Biography BusinessWeek. Accessed 19 February 2011.
  2. ^ Wayne Arnold (4 October 2005). "This Bali Bombing Seen as Having Less Economic Effect". The New York Times. Retrieved 27 December 2012.
  3. ^ "Coordinating Minister for the Economy: Number of Poor Will Increase". Tempo (Indonesian magazine). 14 August 2005. Archived from the original on 8 September 2008. Retrieved 27 December 2012.
  4. ^ Daftar Menteri Koordinator Bidang Kesejahteraan Rakyat Indonesia
  5. ^ Leo, Jegho. "Aburizal Bakrie Regains Golkar Chairmanship". www.globalindonesianvoices.com. Accessed 19 May 2015.
  6. ^ Who's Who[permanent dead link] The Jakarta Post. Accessed 19 February 2011.
  7. ^ Mark Forbes (23 June 2006). "Mud flung at minister in wake of Java disaster". The Sydney Morning Herald.
  8. ^ "Bakrie's Restructuring of Debts Completed". IBonWeb.com. 30 November 2000. Archived from the original on 18 May 2006.
  9. ^ a b CACCI Profile, 2004. "Mr. Aburizal Bakrie now economic minister of Indonesia" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 December 2005. Retrieved 15 October 2006.
  10. ^ BBC News (20 October 2004). "Indonesian leader sets out goals".
  11. ^ "Government to Maintain Increased Fuel Prices". - TEMPO Interactive. 16 March 2005. Archived from the original on 24 March 2013. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
  12. ^ "Indonesia Min: New Fuel Prices To Remain Below International Prices". Dow Jones. 29 September 2005. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
  13. ^ "Indonesia raises fuel prices by 126%". Financial Times. 1 October 2005. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
  14. ^ "Indonesia's donors support latest fuel price hike, Bakrie". AFX News. 3 October 2005. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
  15. ^ "Exxon Claims Right To Run Cepu Oil". Shana News. 17 November 2005. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
  16. ^ "Indonesia: ExxonMobil Cepu oil field to begin full production". energy-pedia news. 29 July 2009. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
  17. ^ "Cepu Block". Archived from the original on 1 May 2011. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
  18. ^ "Jakarta plans to resolve dispute over giant oilfield". Financial Times. 15 November 2004. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
  19. ^ "Fuel prices to increase after May 23. Date and details of coming fuel hike await president's approval of fuel subsidy program". Bali Post. 18 May 2008. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
  20. ^ "Indonesia to cut fuel subsidies". The New York Times. 23 May 2008. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
  21. ^ Charles Choi (22 July 2013). "Catastrophic Mud Eruption Had Natural Causes". Discovery News. Retrieved 23 July 2013.
  22. ^ LiveScience (22 July 2013). "Mud Eruption in Indonesia: Was Disaster Blamed On Drilling Activity Actually Caused By Quake?". Huffington Post. Retrieved 23 July 2013.
  23. ^ "Study starts debate over Indonesia volcano". The Australian. 23 July 2013. Retrieved 23 July 2013.
  24. ^ Staff writer (14 January 2010). "Indonesia's Teflon tycoon". The Economist. Retrieved 20 February 2012.
  25. ^ Arie Rukmantara (14 June 2006). "Shut Lapindo well, arrest management, government told". The Jakarta Post. Archived from the original on 10 October 2012. Retrieved 20 February 2012.
  26. ^ Fidelis E Satriastanti, Ezra Sihite & Markus Junianto Sihaloho (30 May 2012). "Politicians Defend Bakrie, Say Sidoarjo Victims Are Better Off". The Jakarta Globe. Archived from the original on 1 June 2012. Retrieved 30 May 2012.
  27. ^ Hans David Tampubolong (5 March 2013). "Mudflow Erupting After Seven Years".
  28. ^ Markus Junianto Sihaloho (29 September 2010). "Aburizal in 2014, if the Polls Are Right". The Jakarta Globe. Archived from the original on 22 September 2012.
  29. ^ AFP (12 September 2011). "Indonesian tycoon Aburizal Bakrie to run for president". The Straits Times.
  30. ^ JG (19 February 2012). "I'm Ready For 2014". The Jakarta Globe. Archived from the original on 21 February 2012.
  31. ^ ANTARA (28 December 2011). "Golkar seeking running mate for Aburizal as presidential candidate". Antara.
  32. ^ Slamet Susanto (24 June 2012). "Golkar Party Yogyakarta branches declare Sultan as VP candidate". The Jakarta Post. Archived from the original on 27 June 2012. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
  33. ^ Ezra Sihite (21 June 2012). "Bakrie Considers Unlikely Pairing with SBY's Son". The Jakarta Globe. Archived from the original on 25 June 2012. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
  34. ^ a b Staff writer (10 May 2012). "Golkar Party Members Try To Make Up". The Jakarta Globe. Archived from the original on 17 September 2012. Retrieved 30 May 2012.
  35. ^ Staff writer (1 July 2012). "Aburizal Bakrie Named as Golkar's Presidential Candidate". The Jakarta Globe. Archived from the original on 4 February 2013. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
  36. ^ Staff writer (1 May 2012). "Philosophic Ical shrugs off intra-Golkar atacks [sic]". The Jakarta Post. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 30 May 2012.
  37. ^ Dian Widiyanarko (29 June 2012). "Golkar to Declare Presidential Candidate". id:VIVAnews. Archived from the original on 9 February 2013. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
  38. ^ Ahmad Pathoni (3 July 2012). "Bakrie Nomination Starts Indonesia's Presidential Race". Wall Street Journal Online Blog. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
  39. ^ a b Reuters (1 July 2012). "Mining tycoon secures Golkar nomination". Gulf Today. Archived from the original on 14 January 2013. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
  40. ^ Suara Pembaruan (29 June 2012). "Golkar's Aburizal Bakrie Names 5 Potential VP Candidates". The Jakarta Globe. Archived from the original on 5 July 2012. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
  41. ^ Staff writer (3 July 2012). "Golkar to decide VP candidate in 2013". The Jakarta Post. Archived from the original on 4 July 2012. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
  42. ^ Ahmad Fuad Yahya (7 June 2012). "Prabowo Most Popular Presidential Candidate". BERNAMA Malaysian National News Agency. Archived from the original on 14 October 2013. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
  43. ^ Ezra Sihite (26 June 2012). "Golkar Eyes 30% of Votes in 2014". The Jakarta Globe. Archived from the original on 28 October 2014. Retrieved 4 July 2012.

External links[edit]

Business positions
Preceded by
Achmad Bakrie
Chairman of Bakrie and Brothers
Succeeded by
Nirwan Bakrie
Political offices
Preceded by
Sotion Ardjanggi
President of Indonesian Chamber of Commerce
Succeeded by
Mohamad Suleman Hidayat
Preceded by
Dorodjatun Kuntjoro-Jakti
Coordinating Minister for the Economy
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Alwi Shihab
Coordinating Minister for People's Welfare
Succeeded by
Agung Laksono
Party political offices
Preceded by
Jusuf Kalla
Leader of Golkar