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Benarkah Indonesia bisa terhindar KrisMon 1997/98 bila menerapkan Currency Board System?

Posted by jendelaindonesia pada Oktober 5, 2009

Benarkah Indonesia bisa terhindar KrisMon 1997/98 bila menerapkan Currency Board System?

Sebuah Buku dengan judul “THE FALL OF SOEHARTO” yang diterbitkan oleh Crawford House Publishing, Australia tahun 1998, yang berisikan kumpulan tulisan-tulisan para pengamat Indonesia asal Australia, seperti: Hall Hill, Jamie Mackie, Richard Robinson, Harold Crouch, dan Geoff Forrester, dimana mereka mencoba menganalisis faktor-faktor yang menyebabkan kejatuhan Presiden Soeharto.

Faktor utama yang disebutkan di buku itu adalah semakin memburuknya situasi ekonomi saat itu. Hall Hill menilai krisis ekonomi sejak Juli 1997 menyebabkan jatuhnya Soeharto. Krisis ekonomi yang disusul krisis politik mengakibatkan pelarian modal ke luar Indonesia secara masif, hingga menyebabkan anjloknya nilai rupiah sampai mencapai Rp17.000,- per dolar.

Rupiah yang lemah membuat pebisnis “collaps” karena tidak dapat lagi mengelola utang luar negerinya. Situasi diperburuk dengan besarnya utang luar negeri dan buruknya sistem manajemen keuangan dalam negeri. Harga barang kebutuhan pokok melonjak, sehingga menimbulkan keresahan sosial yang luar biasa.

Berdasarkan fakta-fakta diatas, dapat disimpulkan bahwa kejatuhan Soeharto adalah karena Krisis Ekonomi yang melanda Indonesia saat itu.
Penandatanganan LoI IMF

Penandatanganan LoI IMF

Namun sepuluh tahun sejak Presiden Soeharto menandatangani Letter of Intent (LoI) IMF pada tanggal 15 Januari 1998 di rumah beliau di Jl. Cendana Jakarta, disaksikan oleh Managing Director IMF Michel Camdessus sambil berkacak pinggang, sekarang muncul sebuah pemikiran baru penyebab jatuhnya Soeharto. Memang beliau itu mundur karena Krisis Moneter/Ekonomi yang melanda Indonesia, namun ini ada cerita penyebabnya.

Setelah penandatanganan LoI itu. media-media nasional dan internasional menyiarkan berita dengan judul: “Soeharto tunduk pada IMF, salah satu pilar Kapitalisme Global“, disertai foto kepongahan Bos IMF yang berdiri disamping Soeharto. Pak Harto berusaha mencari alternatif lain untuk menyelamatkan Indonesia dari KrisMon, dan memanggil Prof. Steve Hanke, pakar Currency Board System (CBS) dari AS. Prof. Hanke akan mematok Kurs Dollar terhadap Rupiah sebesar Rp 5.500/US Dollar.

Sejarah mencatat keberhasilan Mahatir Muhammad menyelamatkan Malaysia dari KrisMon yang sama. Begitu pula Argentina dan Chili yang merupakan pasien IMF, berhasil lolos dari Krisis Finansial dengan menerapkan CBS, tetapi tidak dilarang oleh IMF.

Pak Harto telah menyusun sebuah Peraturan Pemerintah Pengganti Undang-Undang untuk menerapkan CBS dan dibahas pada rapat dengan Menkeu Mar’ie Muhammad dan Gubernur Bank Indonesia Sudradjat Djiwandono tanggal 10 Februari 1998. Namun Bos IMF Michel Camdessus segera mengirim surat pribadi tertanggal 11 Februari 1998 yang isinya mengancam agar Presiden Soeharto tidak menerapkan CBS, sebab hal ini akan mengganggu penerapan LoI IMF. Ia mengancam akan menunda pengucuran dana IMF sebesar US$ 43 Milyar bila tidak menuruti permintaannya.

Pak Harto merasa terjepit karena telah menandatangani LoI dengan IMF, dan kondisi ekonomi Indonesia yang makin memburuk, maka terpaksa beliau membatalkan rencana penerapan CBS, dengan akibat peneritaan rakyat Indonesia yang begitu panjang dalam KrisMon, bangkrutnya banyak perusahaan-perusahaan dan perbankan Indonesia. Kita iri dengan Malaysia, Argentina dan Chili yang dengan cepat dapat keluar dari KrisMon karena boleh menerapkan CBS. Mengapa?

Prof. Steve Hanke merasa bahwa tindakan IMF menentang penerapan CBS dan kontrol devisa di Indonesia adalah suatu kezaliman. Menurut Merton Miller, penerima Hadiah Nobel untuk Ilmu Ekonomi, mengatakan bahwa penolakan pemerintah Clinton dan IMF terhadap CBS “Bukan karena itu tidak akan jalan tapi justru kalau itu jalan maka Soeharto akan terus berkuasa“.

Menurut para ekonom yang berpikiran cerdas, masuknya IMF ke Indonesia seperti membawa kunci pembuka bagi gudang harta terpendam, yakni pasar Indonesia dan sumber-sumber daya alam dan energi yang luar biasa dahsyat. Buktinya, Di setiap pojok kota, kini begitu banyak kantor cabang bank asing, restoran asing, perusahaan tambang, perusahaan multinasional dan barang produk luar negeri.

(Sumber: Akhmad Kusaeni – Antara News).

Berikut ini adalah kesaksian Mr. Kuroda Takumi yang pada tahun 1998 sedang berada di hotel Ciragan Palace Hotel di Istambul, Turki bersama Prof. Steve Hanke saat menerima berita permintaan Presiden Soeharto untuk datang ke Jakarta. Sebuah pelajaran sejarah bagi para Capres dan Cawapres Indonesia 2009-2014:

This article was written by Steve H. Hanke and originally appeared in the National Post on May 28, 2003. He quoted Paul Keating, Lawrence Eagleberger, and even Michael Camdessus, assessing that our monetary crisis at that time really was intended to bring Soeharto down from power. And Steve himself too whom said what Merton Miller commented about the CBS as “would stabilize the rupiah and the Indonesian economy, and as a result, Mr. Suharto would stay in power“.

“Iraq, Regime Changes and Currency Boards”

by Steve H. Hanke

Most people think the overthrow of Saddam Hussein resulted from the U.S. government’s embrace of a new policy. This particular policy may be new, but the regime change idea and its use are not.

It is well known that Paul Wolfowitz, America’s Deputy Secretary of Defence, and a small group of like-minded neoconservatives, developed the regime change idea some time ago and have been promoting it ever since. Saddam Hussein was not the first to fall in the crosshairs of that policy. When the U.S. government concluded that Philippine
president Ferdinand Marcos was illegitimate, he had to go. Consequently, America actively assisted in his removal from power in 1986. The point man who engineered the overthrow of Mr. Marcos was Paul Wolfowitz, America’s assistant secretary of state at the time.
And during Mr. Wolfowitz’s tenure as the U.S. ambassador to Indonesia in 1986-1989, he planted the regime change idea once again. This time president Suharto was in the crosshairs. He was deemed to be corrupt and undemocratic and had to be overthrown. America, with the help of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), eventually accomplished its goal in 1998, when Mr. Suharto was toppled.

As it turns out, I know something about the overthrow of Mr. Suharto. In late January, 1998, I delivered a series of lectures at Bogazici University. One evening, as Mrs. Hanke and I were relaxing at Istanbul’s Ciragan Palace Hotel, I received an urgent message. It was an invitation from president Suharto to visit him in Jakarta.

Steve H. Hanke is a professor of applied economics at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. He served as a senior economist on president Reagan’s council of economic advisors.

More by Steve H. Hanke
The Asian crisis of 1997 hit Indonesia hard. The IMF responded by prescribing its standard medicine, and Indonesia floated the rupiah on July 2, 1997. The results were catastrophic. The value of the rupiah collapsed, inflation soared and economic chaos ensued. Mr. Suharto was aware that I had advised Bulgaria and Bosnia to establish currency
boards in 1997. And like night follows day, currency chaos was halted in Bulgaria and Bosnia immediately after they adopted fixed exchange rates coupled with the full backing of their domestic currencies with foreign reserves.

President Suharto realized that the IMF’s medicine was killing the patient and that a currency board might prevent a complete collapse. Following our first meeting in Jakarta, Mr. Suharto named me his Special Counsellor. Shortly thereafter, I proposed a currency board for Indonesia, and Mr. Suharto endorsed the idea. This sent the Indonesian rupiah soaring. It appreciated 28% against the U.S. dollar on the day the news was released. This did not suit the U.S. government and the IMF.

Even though the currency board proposal gathered support from many Nobelists and other distinguished economists — including Gary Becker, Rudiger Dornbusch, Milton Friedman, Merton Miller, Robert Mundell, and Sir Alan Walters — it was subjected to a withering and ruthless
attack. Mr. Suharto was told in no uncertain terms — by both the president of the United States, Bill Clinton, and Michel Camdessus, then the managing director of the IMF — that he would have to drop the currency board idea or forego $43-billion in foreign assistance.

Why did a currency board for Indonesia cause such a violent reaction? Nobelist Merton Miller understood the great game immediately. He told the Christian Science Monitor newspaper that the United States wanted
to overthrow Suharto and that a currency board would spoil that plan. Prof. Miller said that the U.S. Treasury knew that a currency board would stabilize the rupiah and the Indonesian economy, and as a result, Mr. Suharto would stay in power. Consequently, the U.S. government used all means available — including the IMF — to oppose the idea. Australia’s former prime minister Paul Keating arrived at a similar conclusion: “The United States Treasury quite deliberately used the economic collapse as a means of bringing about the ouster of President Suharto.” Former U.S. secretary of state Lawrence Eagleberger embraced a similar diagnosis, too: “We [the U.S. government] were fairly clever in that we supported the IMF as it overthrew [Suharto]. Whether that was a wise way to proceed is another question. I’m not saying Mr. Suharto should have stayed, but I kind of wish he had left on terms other than because the IMF pushed him out.”

Even Michel Camdessus could not find fault with these assessments. On the occasion of his retirement, he proudly proclaimed: “We created the conditions that obliged President Suharto to leave his job.”

The neoconservative regime change idea and its use are not new. The only thing that distinguished its application in Iraq was the use of massive military force. Now comes the hard part: nation building. This will require (among other things) a sound currency. For that, a currency board would do the trick. After all, during the 1932-1947
period, an Iraqi currency board produced a sound and stable dinar anchored to the British pound.

Reference: Hanke, Steve H. (2003, May 28). Iraq, Regime Changes and Currency Boards. Retrieved June 14, 2009, from The Cato Institute Web site:
http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=6502

Posted on June 14th, 2009 under Indonesia terhindar dari Krismon 1997-98 bila menerapkan Currency Board System • Tags: IMF masuk Indonesia bawa kunci gudang harta karun, IMF sebagai pilar Kapitalisme Global, Kesaksian Mr Kuroda Takumi, Letter of Intent Indonesia-IMF 15 Jan 1998, Pelajaran Sejarah bagi para Capres dan Cawapres 2009-2014, Soeharto tunduk pada IMF

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