GLOBAL INDONESIAN NETWORK China Exponential Growth: 10 Years First-hand Journey (Back to Indonesia)

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Global Indonesia Network collaborated with the Master Program of Psychology of Atma Jaya Catholic University of Indonesia (AJCUI) to hold a seminar with the theme “CHINA EXPONENTIAL GROWTH: 10+ Years Firsthand Journey — Back to Indonesia “ on June 27th, 2019.

This seminar discussed how China could be one of the biggest economic power through investment in education, human resources and technology. All participants were invited to directly listen to China’s rapid growth from Mulyono, the Managing Director of BAce Capital and Dr. phil. Hora Tjitra who lived in China.

Currently, talking about China is very interesting especially in the heat of the trade war between China and USA. Talking about China’s economic power, cannot be debated, it is due to how serious China is in developing their human resources. China has developed an education system focusing on science, math and engineering. In 2009, China has succeeded in producing 10,000 Ph. D. in engineering and 500,000 bachelors in science. These numbers are greater than other countries’. The interesting part comes from Chinese culture which always put history as its priority and focuses on their people’s welfare.

As one of the countries with biggest population in the world, 1.4 billion population and 9.6 billion kilometer square area, China’s GDP has increased from 150 million dollars in 1978 to 12.24 trillion dollars in 2017. The educational policy is also in line with the technological changes. China has the biggest leap divided into 3 phases: low-cost manufacturer, high-tech at low cost and high-tech superpower.

The first phase was started in 1998, when China was in the phase of low-cost manufacturer. China was called as the world factory as factories in China produced all sorts of products in great quantities. All the products could be found easily in all places with a very low price, but the quality was not really good. Then, in 2008, China entered the second phase (high-teach at low cost). In this phase, China didn’t go out from its uniqueness, selling products very cheaply, however the product quality was already considered high-tech. For an instance was mobile phones made in China with cheap prices yet high-tech features. In 2018, China has entered the last phase (high-tech superpower) where China has developed technology developed in other countries. For an instance, Huawei has released 5G technology at the time when even USA hasn’t even released the same product. China also focuses on the development of clean-energy technology, mobile payment and biotechnology, in which these three technologies are the world focus. 

One of the centers for high-tech development, especially in e-commerce, is Hangzhou. This city has become one of the icons for China’s economic power, which is Alibaba. Hangzhou, located in Zhejiang province, became the host for G20 in 2016 and it will become the host for Asian Games in 2022. Hangzhou is known as the city of e-commerce development, the center of silk, and the center of the most expensive tea in China. Hangzhou itself has the GDP of more than 1 trillion RMB.

 

Prof. Dr. Phil. Hana Panggabean as the expert of organizational culture from Faculty of Psychology of AJCUI said, “I think one of interesting things from China is that they always feel, and indeed, they are one of the best civilizations in the world. Every person holds that belief. Therefore, they always feel that they need to always be the best in the world and must always get involved.” She further continued that Indonesia also needed to get stronger not by following the standard of other countries, but by developing our own power and uniqueness. “If we want to go global, to get stronger, we need to do it in our own capability. Don’t follow others power. That’s the statement of Global Indonesia Networking.”

Global Indonesia Netwok is a community initiated by Prof. Dr.phil. Hana R. G. Panggabean, Psychologist, Dr. phil. Juliana Murniati, M.Si. and Dr. Phil. Hora Tjitra. It is a dialogue community between academicians and practitioners. It believes that the research results brought by academicians are not only for internal interests but can also be used by practitioners. All the three initiators, through this community, have the vision to encourage as many Indonesian as possible to go global.

In this seminar, Mr. Mulyono shared his experience working in Alibaba Group. He held the position as the Deputy Director in Alibaba Group up until 2017.

For Mulyono, the one-child policy which has been implemented by China since 1979 is the key for generations born in the recent 40 years to get more used to individualistic lifestyle, and it encourages competitiveness and high aggressiveness. “My friends during the college years were used to be alone. They just understood “Respect your dorm mate” after getting to the college, but before that they always lived individually. Their belief was “I cannot depend on others. I’m with my own destiny.”

 

He further added that the attitude is brought to the work culture in China. He compared Chinese organizational culture with Indonesia’s, especially in the context of digital industry. Mulyono thought that Indonesian was easy to feel satisfied although they were just the first in regional scale. “However, in China, world is the bench mark. In 1999, Jack Ma has started to think “We’ll change the world”. I think this kind of vision, mission and value are what lacking in our culture.”

 

Muloyo also shared his experience working in Alibaba. The organizational culture in Alibaba is very great. It respects and values each of its workers’ works and ideas, even crazy ideas, as long as it can improve their business. “So I think Alibaba’s work culture is very clear. Whether the business can bring benefits, become better, improve efficiency and lower the cost. That’s all.”

 

On the other hand, Prof. Hora thought that actually Indonesian power lies on our culture of teamwork. In his opinion, Indonesia is a nation which can easily build social relationships and it is supposed to be our power. However, the issue is that due to the strong teamwork culture, not all Indonesian can live independently.

In their presentations, both speakers gave a signal that Indonesia currently was having the right momentum to go global. Mulyono thought that Indonesia would go to better direction judging at its rapid growth along with the existence of start-up companies in digital industry. “In general we are going to be good,” said Mulyono.