ad info




TIME Asia
TIME Asia Home
Current Issue
Magazine Archive
Asia Buzz
Travel Watch
Web Features
  Entertainment
  Photo Essays

Subscribe to TIME
Customer Services
About Us
Write to TIME Asia

TIME.com
TIME Canada
TIME Europe
TIME Pacific
TIME Digital
Asiaweek
Latest CNN News

Young China
Olympics 2000
On The Road

 ASIAWEEK.COM
 CNN.COM
  east asia
  southeast asia
  south asia
  central asia
  australasia
 BUSINESS
 SPORTS
 SHOWBIZ
 ASIA WEATHER
 ASIA TRAVEL


Other News
From TIME Asia

Culture on Demand: Black is Beautiful
The American Express black card is the ultimate status symbol

Asia Buzz: Should the Net Be Free?
Web heads want it all -- for nothing

JAPAN: Failed Revolution
Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori clings to power as dissidents in his party finally decide not to back a no-confidence motion

Cover: Endgame?
After Florida's controversial ballot recount, Bush holds a 537-vote lead in the state, which could give him the election

TIME Digest
FORTUNE.com
FORTUNE China
MONEY.com

TIME Asia Services
Subscribe
Subscribe to TIME! Get up to 3 MONTHS FREE!

Bookmark TIME
TIME Media Kit
Recent awards

TIME Asia Asiaweek Asia Now TIME Asia story

NOVEMBER 8, 1999 VOL. 154 NO. 18

Shihab: "Economic" Foreign Policy

A year ago, Alwi Shihab was teaching comparative religion at Harvard University's Divinity School. Now the former professor has been named Indonesia's Foreign Minister. Shihab met with TIME reporter Jason Tedjasukmana in Jakarta. Excerpts from the interview:

    ALSO IN TIME
Visions 21: The Way We Will Be
In the first of a series, TIME offers glimpses (and guesses) of what the world will look like in the next century

Indonesia: Too Many Cooks?
President Abdurrahman Wahid cobbles together a cabinet that appears to be more eclectic than effective

Interview:
Indonesia's new Foreign Minister looks abroad

South Korea: That Strong-Arm Feeling
Led by President Kim, Koreans look back fondly on a dictator

Nepal: Warrior Culture
In the Himalayas, recruiting season rolls around again for the Gurkhas, the world's most feared mercenaries

  RELATED STORIES
TIME
The Vision Thing
Abdurrahman Wahid has trouble seeing and needs help walking, but 210 million Indonesians must now hope their new President can lead them out of the darkness

Numbers Game
Gus Dur's first task: fix a catatonic economy

Photo Essay
The streets of Jakarta in the hours leading up to the selection of Wahid and Megawati

CNN
Breaking news from Southeast Asia

New Indonesian Cabinet warned against corruption

The last Indonesian troops leave East Timor

Message Board: Indonesia and East Timor

ASIAWEEK
Unity in Diversity?
Maybe the all-inclusive new government will work. It had better

Maneuvering to the Top amid Chaos
In a dramatic twist, Abdurrahman Wahid becomes Indonesia's leader. Can he rule?

TIME: How will your foreign policy differ from your predecessor's?
Shihab: It will be very much in line, but we have a different emphasis: economic more than political. I also envisage a cut in spending in the department.

TIME: Why do you think you were chosen Foreign Minister?
Shihab: I don't know. You can answer that. One of the considerations is that I am at home with the Islamic and Middle Eastern countries. I have a big network in the West and, more importantly, I have a sense of business. I was in the construction business for 15 years, relatively successfully, and I have a reconciliatory nature.

TIME: Do you have ties to Washington?
Shihab: I have many friends in Washington: academics, people in the Administration, former ambassadors.

TIME: How will you restore Indonesia's image and win back the confidence of the IMF and other donors?
Shihab: We will show them that this is a legitimate government trying to do away with a culture of corruption and bribery. We will work hand in hand with the economic team. I will try to position the Foreign Ministry as a marketing center to sell our commodities.

TIME: Have the IMF and other institutions been too aggressive in dictating terms to Indonesia in the past?
Shihab: I think they have done their job properly. As to what extent they are imposing their will, it depends on the angle you look from. Some look at it as imposing, others look at it as the preconditions for assistance to be given out.

TIME: Does Indonesia need to have a counterbalance to these institutions?
Shihab: Yes, but through the empowerment of our own resources.

TIME: Why has China been selected for the President's first official visit?
Shihab: As the President said, "Why not?" If you choose somewhere other than China, people would ask you, "Why not China?" It is a great neighbor with sympathy to our cause. But we are not thinking of abandoning our Western friends. It is only a matter of putting an emphasis on neighbors.

TIME: Should ASEAN be worried about Indonesia growing closer to China?
Shihab: No. We will use all ways and means to achieve our goal, which is to have solid cooperation with China, India and the ASEAN countries, without abandoning the West. In addition to that, we want to attract Middle Eastern countries to jump in with their petro-dollars.

TIME: Are you relieved that the East Timor issue has essentially been taken off your plate?
Shihab: I am fortunate that East Timor--which annoyed [former Foreign Minister] Ali Alatas for so many years--will not be part of my agenda.

This edition's table of contents
TIME Asia home


AsiaNow


Quick Scroll: More stories from TIME, Asiaweek and CNN

   LATEST HEADLINES:

WASHINGTON
U.S. secretary of state says China should be 'tolerant'

MANILA
Philippine government denies Estrada's claim to presidency

ALLAHABAD
Faith, madness, magic mix at sacred Hindu festival

COLOMBO
Land mine explosion kills 11 Sri Lankan soldiers

TOKYO
Japan claims StarLink found in U.S. corn sample

BANGKOK
Thai party announces first coalition partner



TIME:

COVER: President Joseph Estrada gives in to the chanting crowds on the streets of Manila and agrees to make room for his Vice President

THAILAND: Twin teenage warriors turn themselves in to Bangkok officials

CHINA: Despite official vilification, hip Chinese dig Lamaist culture

PHOTO ESSAY: Estrada Calls Snap Election

WEB-ONLY INTERVIEW: Jimmy Lai on feeling lucky -- and why he's committed to the island state



ASIAWEEK:

COVER: The DoCoMo generation - Japan's leading mobile phone company goes global

Bandwidth Boom: Racing to wire - how underseas cable systems may yet fall short

TAIWAN: Party intrigues add to Chen Shui-bian's woes

JAPAN: Japan's ruling party crushes a rebel at a cost

SINGAPORE: Singaporeans need to have more babies. But success breeds selfishness


Launch CNN's Desktop Ticker and get the latest news, delivered right on your desktop!

Today on CNN
 Search

Back to the top   © 2000 Time Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.