Based on the latest data from Indonesia’s Statistical Agency (BPS), Indonesia recorded a USD $227.1 million trade surplus in September 2018. Although it is a very small surplus, it did lead to some optimism. After all, Indonesia had recorded big monthly trade deficits of USD $2.0 billion and USD $944.2 million in July 2018 and August 2018, respectively.
The Business Columns section of Indonesia Investments provides in-depth columns that exhibit an analysis regarding subjects that are both important for understanding the Indonesian business climate and have high news value in the current state of Indonesia's economy. As a whole these columns should provide the reader a thorough and detailed picture of multiple Indonesian business sectors and be a source of ideas or inspiration to invest - or not to invest - in specific sectors of the Indonesian economy.
In the second half of September 2018 the World Bank released its latest Indonesia Economic Quarterly (abbreviated IEQ), titled “Urbanization for All”. The IEQ, a flagship publication of the Washington-based institution which (at least in our view) is among the most interesting reports that are on a regular basis published about the Indonesian economy, has two main aims. Firstly, it informs about the key developments that occurred in Indonesia’s economy over the past three months, and places these developments in a longer-term and global context. Secondly, the IEQ provides an in-depth examination of selected economic and policy issues and an analysis of Indonesia’s medium-term development challenges.
Indonesia, with a population of approximately 267 million, is the largest market for the Food Service Industry in the ASEAN region. With rising incomes amongst the growing middle class and changes in lifestyles, the Food Service Industry in Indonesia is expected to show a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) between 2018 and 2023 of 7.06 percent.
On 1 September 2018 the expanded B20 biodiesel program was launched. It means that the government of Indonesia requires all diesel fuel that is used within the country to contain biodiesel (with a 20 percent amount of bio-content, typically fatty acid methyl ester [FAME] that is derived from palm oil). This program will boost domestic palm oil consumption (which is important because palm oil exports are currently not doing too great amid low prices and anti-palm oil campaigns in various western countries), but more importantly the program aims to slash imports of fuel, hence encouraging a narrower current account deficit and a stronger rupiah. Meanwhile, the program also aims at reducing carbon emissions.
The views expressed in these business columns are the views of the authors or the interviewed persons only and therefore do not necessarily reflect the views of Indonesia Investments. The authors are free to ventilate their opinions about the Indonesian business climate. Facts presented in these columns are the result of the author's own research or indicated sources, read disclaimer.