From street stalls to bourses, SE Asia’s traditional medicine makers promise panacea

JAKARTA/SINGAPORE (Reuters) – On rainy days in Jakarta, a canny street merchant like Emi can sell two dozen sachets of herbal cold cure Tolak Angin to office workers and laborers sniffling by her roadside stall. “Herbal medicine is good for the body because it’s natural,” says Emi, who goes by only one name. Laced with ginger, cloves and mint leaves, the traditional remedy Emi sells for 25 cents apiece is also good for business: The company that makes Tolak Angin went public this week and is worth around $850 million. Shares in PT Industri Jamu dan Farmasi Sido Muncul Tbk jumped as much as 24 percent when it became the first herbal medicine company to list in Jakarta on December 18.


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