A free trade zone, business friendly government policies and well-developed port and airport facilities make Indonesia’s Batam Island a good alternative to crowded Singapore for locating regional headquarters, said K. Sindhunatha, president director of P.T. Indulexco Engineering and Consulting Group.

      Indulexco managed the construction of Batam’s Hang Nadim Batam International Airport.  At the invitation of Mark Towery, managing director of Fry Consultants, Mr. Sindhunatha detoured from a trip to Florida to discuss Batam with attendees at a VIP luncheon at the World Trade Center-Atlanta on Jan. 17.

      Singapore, which is only 20 kilometers away from the island, is actively supporting development on Batam because the overcrowded city has been experiencing problems with industrial pollution, said Mr. Sindhunatha.

      Batam’s population is limited by the Indonesian government, and controlled through the use of identity cards, he said.

      The government of Indonesia is also encouraging foreign companies to use Batam as a base for operations throughout the Pacific Rim, he said, and is looking for businesses to develop the island’s infrastructure.

      The pace of investment has picked up lately, Mr. Sindhunatha added, and the government is having trouble providing basic services such as electricity and water for the residents of the island.  Rain and the sea are the only water sources on Batam, he said.

      He added that the government would be very supportive of a foreign company interested in building and operating a power plant or other infrastructure facilities. For more information, call Mr. Towery at (770) 226-8888; fax, (770) 226-8899.