Forecasts for economic growth in Indonesia in 2014 are still optimistic. The government of Indonesia targets a 6 percent growth rate, while the country's central bank (Bank Indonesia) expects GDP growth in the range of 5.8 to 6.2 percent. Although these forecasts clearly fall short of the target set in the country's National Medium Term Development Plan (RPJMN) - which mentions annual GDP growth of between 6.3 and 6.8 percent - the forecasts are still rather positive given the global uncertain and volatile economic context in recent years.
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The government of Indonesia aims to reduce the country's poverty rate to between 6.5 and 8.0 percent by 2019. The government, through its Ministry of National Development Planning (Bappenas), is currently busy finalizing the targets of the National Medium-Term Development Plan 2015-2019 (RPJMN 2015-2019). This RPJMN is the third phase of implementation of the National Long-Term Development Plan 2005-2025 (RPJPN 2005-2025) which forms the basis for ministries and government agencies when formulating their policies.
In the draft for the State Budget of 2014 (RAPBN 2014), the government of Indonesia projects economic growth of between 6.4 and 6.9 percent. Continued global recovery is expected to result in higher GDP growth compared to 2012 (6.23 percent) as it will result in better demand for Indonesian products, such as commodities. The main pillar of Indonesia's GDP growth - domestic consumption - is expected to grow due to the population's higher purchasing power and the upcoming legislative and presidential elections.
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After Indonesia's outlook for economic growth in 2014 was revised down from 6 percent to between 5.8 and 6 percent, the government also revised targets of poverty and unemployment reduction. In the 2014 State Budget (APBN 2014), the government set the targeted poverty rate at 9.0 to 10.5 percent of Indonesia's total population. However, the government revised down this poverty rate to between 10.54 and 10.75 percent, which is also far below the target that was set in the National Medium Term Development Plan (RPJMN) at 8 to 10 percent.
The government of Indonesia - through its Ministry of National Development Planning (known as Bappenas) - designed three funding scenarios for Indonesia's infrastructure development in the National Medium-Term Development Plan (RPJMN 2015-2019). The lack of appropriate infrastructure is one of the bottlenecks to Indonesia's development. The scenarios involve the amount of funds and other requirements for infrastructure investment. The three scenarios are divided into a 'full scenario', a 'partial scenario' and a 'baseline scenario'.
In Bank Indonesia's board of governors' meeting, which was held on Thursday (12/12), it was decided to maintain the country's benchmark interest rate (BI rate) at 7.50 percent. This decision was in line with market expectation but was unable to support the Jakarta Composite Index and rupiah exchange rate. The lending facility and deposit facility interest rates were also maintained at 7.50 percent and 5.75 percent respectively. Bank Indonesia decided not to change the rate as Indonesia's inflation outlook for 2014 is still within target.
Indonesia's poverty rate is expected to jump to between 11.13 and 11.37 percent of the total Indonesian population in 2013 due to inflationary pressures. Inflation may reach 9.2 percent at the year end. The new poverty forecast is significantly higher than the government's original target of 9.5 to 10.5 percent as set in the country's State Budget. The revised forecast was presented by Indonesia's Ministry of National Development Planning (Bappenas). Poverty basket inflation is expected to rise accordingly.
The government of Indonesia has the ambition to reduce Indonesia's unemployment rate to about 5.7 percent in 2014. This ambition was pronounced by Armida Alisjahbana, the minister of National Development Planning. According to the latest data released by Statistics Indonesia, the country's unemployment rate currently stands at 5.92 percent. The minister stressed that the unemployment target of 6 percent that was set in Indonesia's National Medium Term Development Plan to be reached in 2014, has already been achieved.
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