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Sri Mulyani Indrawati Biography


Sri Mulyani Indrawati is an Indonesian economist. She has been recently appointed the Managing Director of the World Bank Group and resigned as Finance Minister of Indonesia in the Second United Indonesia Cabinet.

As Indonesian finance minister from 2005 to 2010, Sri Mulyani is known as a tough reformist and has largely been credited with strengthening Indonesia's economy, increasing investments and steering Southeast Asia's largest economy through the 2007–2010 financial crisis.In 2011, she was ranked as the 65th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes magazine.

Sri Mulyani was born in Tanjung Karang (now called Bandar Lampung) in Lampung, Sumatra, on August 26, 1962. She is the seventh child of university lecturers Prof. Satmoko and Retno Sriningsih.

Her name is of Javanese origin, with Sanskrit roots. Sri has the meaning of radiance, or diffusing light, and is common as both honorific and part of female names among Javanese. Mulyani comes from the word mulya which is used to describe the concept value, valuable. Indrawati come from Indra and feminine suffix -vati.

She obtained her degree from Universitas Indonesia in 1986. Sri Mulyani received her master and doctorate in economics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1992.

In 2001, Mulyani left for Atlanta, Georgia, to serve as a consultant with the US Aid Agency (USAID) for programs to strengthen Indonesia’s autonomy. She also lectured on the Indonesian economy as visiting professor at the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies at the Georgia State University. She was an executive director of the International Monetary Fund representing 12 economies in Southeast Asia from 2002 to 2004.

She is married to economist Tony Sumartono, with whom she has three children. She is a professional economist and has no political affiliation.

Sri Mulyani was selected as Indonesian Finance Minister in 2005 by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

One of her first acts was to fire corrupt tax and custom officers in the departement. She successfully tackled corruption and initiated reforms in Indonesia's tax and customs office, and enjoys a reputation for integrity. She also succeeded in increasing direct investment in Indonesia. In 2004, the year President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono took office, Indonesia received $4.6 billion in foreign direct investment. The next year, it attracted $8.9 billion.

In 2006, just one year after selected, she was named Euromoney Finance Minister of the Year by Euromoney magazine.

During her tenure in 2007, Indonesia recorded 6.6% economic growth, its highest rate since the 1997 Asian financial crisis. However, growth is down in 2008 to 6% due to the global economic slowdown. In July 2008, Sri Mulyani Indrawati was inaugurated as the Coordinating Minister for the economy, replacing Boediono, who was to head the central bank.

In August 2008, Mulyani was ranked by Forbes Magazine as the 23rd most powerful woman in the world and the most powerful woman in Indonesia. During her tenure as Finance Minister, the country's foreign exchange reserves reached an all-time high of $50 billion. She oversaw a reduction in public debt to about 30% of gross domestic product from 60%, making it easier for Indonesia to sell debt to foreign institutional investors.

She also revised incentive structures for civil servants in her ministry and began paying higher salaries to tax officials deemed to be "clean" so they would have less temptation to accept bribes.

In 2007 and 2008, Emerging Markets newspaper selected Sri Mulyani as Asia's Finance Minister of The Year for two years in a row.

After Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono was re-elected in 2009, she was re-appointed in her post of Finance Minister. In 2009 Indonesian economy grew up by 4.5% while many part of the world is in recession. Indonesia is one of just three major emerging economies to grow faster than 4 percent in 2009. The other two are China and India. Under her supervision, government has managed to increase the number of income taxpayers from 4.35 million individuals to nearly 16 million in the last five years, and tax receipts grew by around 20% each year to more than Rp 600 trillion in 2010.

On May 5, 2010 Mulyani was appointed as one of three Managing Directors of the World Bank Group. She replaces Juan Jose Daboub, who completed his four-year term June 30, overseeing 74 nations in Latin America, Caribbean, East Asia and Pacific, Middle East and North Africa.

Her resignation was viewed negatively and caused financial turmoil in Indonesia, with stock exchange closed down 3.8% after the news, amid a broad sell off in Asia, and the Indonesian rupiah fell nearly 1% against the dollar. Drop in Indonesian stock exchange is the sharpest in 17 months. The move has been called as "Indonesia’s loss, and the World’s gain".

There are widespread speculations that her resignation is due to political pressure, especially from powerful tycoon and chairman of Golkar Party, Aburizal Bakrie. Bakrie is known to have enmity toward Mulyani due to her investigation on massive tax fraud in Bakrie Group, her refusal to prop up Bakrie's coal interests with government funds, and her refusal to state that Lapindo mud flow, which was caused by drilling of Bakrie's company, was a "natural disaster".

On May 20, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono named as her replacement Agus Martowardojo, CEO of Bank Mandiri, the largest bank in Indonesia.

Right before her resignation, The Legislature, spearheaded by Golkar Party, has been accusing Sri Mulyani with allegation on crime with bailout of medium scale Bank Century in 2008. Critics of the bailout claim it was done without legal authority and without proving a capital injection was needed to prevent a run on other banks, Bank Century bailout cost the state to suffer a financial lost amounting to 6,7 trillions rupiah ($710 million). Sri Mulyani has defended the bailout as necessary given the uncertainties in the global economy at the time and denied any wrongdoing.

However, criticism about Sri Mulyani's policy also came from ex vice president Jusuf Kalla. In his harshest comments yet on the controversial PT Bank Century bailout, former Vice President Jusuf Kalla denied claims by former Bank Indonesia officials that if the lender had been allowed to fail it would have had a systemic impact on the country’s banking system and economy.

“The Bank Century scandal is a robbery, anyone who supports Bank Century, supports a robber.” Kalla said.

Furthermore, all of the nine factions on the House of Representatives special committee agreed that there were suspicious and possibly fraudulent transactions during the bailout period beginning in November 2008 and evidence of money laundering. They all then said they lacked the expertise to do more and called on the National Police and Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) to take over.

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