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Jakarta Post

Indonesia gets richer but inequality remains wide

  • Made Anthony Iswara

    The Jakarta Post

Denpasar, Bali   /   Fri, February 7, 2020   /  08:14 am
The Jakarta Post Image
Valeria Panu, 65, carries a plate of rice for her child in Pong Ruan village, East Manggarai, East Nusa Tenggara, on Nov. 8.(JP/Markus Makur)

“The rich get richer and the poor get poorer” is an age-old adage that has become more relevant than ever as Indonesia becomes wealthier, multiple recent reports have shown.  According to a list compiled by Forbes last year, the country’s 50 richest added US$5.6 billion to their combined wealth, which reached a record $134.6 billion last year despite global trade turbulence slowing down the country’s economy. The total figure was about 12 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) in 2019. Prominent businessmen Robert Budi and Michael Hartono, also known as the Hartono brothers, topped the list with a net worth of US$37.3 billion through various businesses ranging from tobacco and banking to startups and media outlets. However, the 2019 Global Wealth Report published in October by Swiss multinational investment bank and financia...