Business Accomplishments for a Better Community

Sunday, February 16, 2014

One Man’s Ambition for Poverty Elimination and National Economy

Being one of the richest persons in Indonesia does not make Sukanto Tanoto satisfied with his life. He still has a great ambition for his country. Even though he lives and spends most of his days in Singapore now, he is still committed to lifting prosperity of the societies, particularly those communities surrounding his enterprises and in his hometown, Pelalawan, Medan. This is a manifestation of corporate social responsibility to the surrounding community.

Vision for Poverty Elimination

In Pelalawan, he established a large-scale industrial complex, Riau Complex, where PT. Riau Andalan Pulp and Paper (RAPP) is located. He recognizes that many of the society members in this area live below the poverty line. His target is getting rid of poverty within a radius of 5 kilometers from the Riau Complex. In longer term, his mission for poverty elimination was a radius of 100 kilometers from Riau Complex area. He has explicitly told about his mission; the next step is formulating the company policy to achieve the mission. “Of course, it requires substantial human resources and financial resources,” he admitted.

Vision for National Economy

Sukanto Tanoto’s greater vision is to help boost the national economy. He has set a plan to achieve the target within the next 2 or 3 years. “I used the poverty line specified by the government as the indicator,” he said in a recent interview in Singapore.  He will begin with massive corporate social responsibility programs for the communities where his businesses are located.

Living in Singapore does not necessarily mean that Sukanto Tanoto forgets his country. He chooses to live in Singapore since it is more efficient given that many of his enterprises are located abroad. However, he admitted that he would return to Indonesia. This is evident from the fact that he renovated his house in Jakarta. 


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