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State-owned insurer Asabri faces corruption allegation after stocks plunge

Jakarta Post - January 13, 2020

Riska Rahman, Jakarta – State-owned insurance company Asuransi Sosial Angkatan Bersenjata Republik Indonesia (Asabri) has been implicated in a corruption case after its stock portfolio plunged, prompting scrutiny from high-ranking officials.

Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Mahfud MD said he would summon Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati and State-Owned Minister Erick Thohir to discuss the allegation and the potential state losses.

"I got word of allegations involving Asabri with [state losses] amounting up to Rp 10 trillion (US$728.9 million)," he said at his office in Jakarta over the weekend as quoted by kompas.com.

Another state-owned insurer, Asuransi Jiwasraya, is facing a corruption investigation by the Attorney General's Office (AGO) and the Supreme Audit Agency (BPK). Jiwasraya failed to pay Rp 12.4 trillion in matured policies due in December 2019, leading to allegations of investment mismanagement.

Meanwhile, Asabri, which manages social insurance and pension funds of personnel of the National Police, the Indonesian Military (TNI) and employees of the Defense Ministry, reportedly lost Rp 10 trillion as several stocks in its portfolio endured losses of more than 95 percent last year.

Some of the stocks in Asabri's portfolio were similar to those of ailing Jiwasraya that were deemed "low quality stocks" by the BPK. The stocks include PT Hanson International, the share price of which plunged 57.98 percent last year, and PT Alfa Energi Investama, which saw its share price nosedive by 95.79 percent in the same period.

Separately, Erick said he would wait for the results of the BPK's audit before determining the next step in the Asabri case.

"We don't want to jump to conclusions," he said in Jakarta on Friday.

Since the case came to light on Friday, Asabri has yet to issue a statement regarding the matter. Corporate secretary Meirizal C. said he would publish an explanation on its investment strategy after confirming the matter with relevant stakeholders, as reported by Kontan.

Source: https://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2020/01/13/state-owned-insurer-asabri-faces-corruption-allegation-after-stocks-plunge.html