IKEA comes to Indonesia

Swedish IKEA_565do-it-yourself furniture chain IKEA will open its first store in Indonesia in Alam Sutera, Tangerang in the western suburbs of Jakarta, it emerged during a visit of Indonesia’s president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to Stockholm last week.

The multinational firm plans to open the shop in July 2014 in a step that marks its further expansion in ASEAN after it opened a store in Bangkok in 2012. In the region, IKEA also runs stores in Malaysia and Singapore.

Apart from IKEA, the president and an Indonesian business delegation met the CEOs of seven other Swedish firms who said that they are interested in investing in Indonesia in the heavy equipment, automotive, mining and renewable energy sectors at a total volume of $500 million, according to a statement by Indonesia’s Industry Minister M.S. Hidayat.

Yudhoyono met top executives from multinationals, including Hans Vestberg, the chief executive of Ericsson, and Mikael Ohlsson, the president of IKEA.

Total bilateral  trade between Indonesia and Sweden reached $1.46 billion in 2012, government data show. However, investment from Sweden in Indonesia was small in 2012 at just $5.2 million for 11 projects.

Some other Swedish companies are already setting investment plans in Indonesia. ABB, a power and automation technology group, is preparing to invest in two power plants in Java at $25 million each.