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Open Access Indonesianisasi of Dutch economic interests, 1930-1960 : The case of Internatio

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Indonesianisasi of Dutch economic interests, 1930-1960 : The case of Internatio

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This article looks in detail into the process of indonesianisasi at Internatio, a major Dutch trading firm in Indonesia. I draw on Dutch archival records and the voluminous Dutch and international literature on the changing environment for Dutch private business in Indonesia in the 1950s. Internatio’s case is particularly instructive for the following reasons:– Internatio was a leading trading firm in Indonesia and regarded as a ‘trendsetter’ among the so-called ‘Big Five’, the leading Dutch import houses in the archipelago.– Successive Indonesian cabinets considered import trade crucial in the process of indonesianisasi, and for this reason the sector was targeted for policies aimed at wresting control from Dutch firms and encouraging the development of indigenous ones.– Internatio had a pivotal role in the Indonesian economy due to its extensive interests, not only in import trade but also in exports, estates, manufacturing, shipping, and insurance.The article is chronologically structured, distinguishing five periods: depression and diversification (1930-1940); the end of Dutch supremacy (1940-1945); revolution and rehabilitation (1945-1950); adjusting to new realities (1950-1956); confrontation and nationalization (1956-1960).

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