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Today's Headlines Government Spending

  • Reforming the Subsidized Fuel Price Policy of Indonesia

    Reforming the Subsidized Fuel Price Policy of Indonesia

    The Indonesian government has further reformed its decade-old fuel subsidy policy in a move to streamline - and make more structural use of - public spending. The latest change is effective from today (1 January 2015) and thus Indonesia moved a step closer to applying a market-based price mechanism. The government now uses a fixed diesel subsidy of IDR 1,000 (USD $0.08) per liter, while subsidy for low-octane gasoline is scrapped altogether (however the government will account for gasoline distribution costs outside Java, Madura and Bali).

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  • Joko Widodo Aims to Cut Indonesia’s Expensive Energy Subsidies

    Soon-to-be president of Indonesia Joko Widodo (popularly known as Jokowi) stated that he intends to cut the large fuel and electricity subsidies once in office. Indonesia’s Revised State Budget of 2015 (RAPBN 2015) allocates IDR 363.5 trillion (about USD $31.2 billion) to energy subsidies. This figure accounts for about 18 percent of total government spending (IDR 2,019.9 trillion) set for 2015. Although the energy subsidies aim to support the poorer segments of Indonesian society, they cause complex problems in Southeast Asia’s largest economy.  

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  • Finance Minister: Indonesia's Economic Growth in 2013 Expected at 5.7%

    Finance Minister: Indonesia's Economic Growth in 2013 Expected at 5.7%

    Chatib Basri, the Finance Minister of Indonesia, expects Indonesia's economy to expand 5.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013. As such, total gross domestic product (GDP) growth of Southeast Asia's largest economy in 2013 will total between 5.6 to 5.7 percent in 2013. This result will imply that Indonesia's economic expansion in 2013 has slowed down for the second straight year, mainly due to global economic turmoil. In 2011 and 2012, the country's economy expanded by 6.5 percent and 6.2 percent respectively.

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  • Indonesia's Weak Rupiah Exchange Rate Weighs on Fuel Subsidy Spending

    Indonesia's Weak Rupiah Exchange Rate Weighs on Fuel Subsidy Spending

    The depreciating Indonesia rupiah exchange rate has large consequences for Indonesia's state budget, in particular fuel subsidy spending, as the government imports a large quantity of its crude oil demand (in US dollars). The weak rupiah, which has depreciated about 25 percent against the US dollar since the start of 2013, results in a ballooning of fuel subsidy spending. In the Revised State Budget of 2013, fuel subsidies were set at IDR 199.9 trillion but after the rupiah's downslide, another IDR 50 trillion is needed to cover the imports.

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  • Indonesia's Economic Growth (GDP) Continues to Slow Down in Q3-2013

    Today (06/11), Statistics Indonesia announced that Indonesia's gross domestic product (GDP) expanded 5.62 percent in the third quarter of 2013 from the same period in 2012. The result implies the continuation of Indonesia's slowing economic growth as Q3-2013 constitutes the fifth consecutive quarter in which the country recorded slowing economic growth. Previously, the government had already expressed its concern about the GDP growth figure in Q3-2013 because the current high inflation rate curbs household consumption.

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  • Weak Rupiah and Global Economy Enlarge Indonesia's Budget Deficit

    The outcome of Indonesia's 2014 budget deficit is expected to be higher than initially planned in the 2014 State Budget Draft (RAPBN 2014). In the 2014 draft, the deficit is proposed to amount to IDR 154.2 trillion (USD $13.6 billion), or 1.49 percent of Indonesia's gross domestic product (GDP). However, the government's latest estimate indicates a widening of the deficit to IDR 209.5 trillion (USD $18.5 billion), equivalent to 2.02 percent of GDP. The wider deficit is mainly caused by Indonesia's depreciating rupiah as well as the weak global economy.

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  • Bank Indonesia Keeps Key BI Rate at 6.50% to Support Economic Growth

    Indonesia's central bank, Bank Indonesia, decided today (15/08) to keep its benchmark interest rate (BI rate) at 6.50 percent. In recent days, heavy speculation emerged about whether Bank Indonesia would raise the BI rate for the third consecutive time in three months as the country is plagued by higher inflation (8.61 percent year-on-year in July 2013) and a weakening rupiah. Reluctance to raise the interest rate again seems to indicate that the Bank gives priority to economic growth, which has slid to a three-year low at 5.81 percent in Q2-2013.

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  • New Macroeconomic Assumptions in Indonesia's Revised State Budget

    DPR MPR Building Government of Indonesia Investments

    After a long plenary session on Monday (17/06), Indonesia's House of Representatives (DPR) and the government have agreed to the revised 2013 State Budget (APBN-P). The revision was needed as original macroeconomic assumptions began to fall out of tune with reality. Due to global and domestic conditions a number of assumptions needed to revised down. Most controversial decision that was taken is the increase in price of subsidized fuel by 44 percent to IDR 6,500 (USD $0.66) per liter.

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Latest Columns Government Spending

  • World Bank Releases Indonesia Economic Quarterly "Reforming amid Uncertainty"

    World Bank Releases Indonesia Economic Quarterly "Reforming amid Uncertainty"

    Today, the World Bank released the latest edition of its flagship publication Indonesia Economic Quarterly, entitled "Reforming amid Uncertainty". In this edition the Washington-based institution states that global conditions remain unfavorable despite financial markets having stabilized since October. Meanwhile, the country was negatively affected by severe man-made forest fires and toxic haze which cost Indonesia an estimated IDR 221 trillion (USD $16 billion or 1.9 percent of the country's gross domestic product) in five months.

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  • Bank Central Asia (BCA) to See Slower Credit Growth than State Banks

    Bank Central Asia (BCA) to See Slower Credit Growth than State Banks

    Bank Central Asia (BCA), one of the leading commercial banks in Indonesia, is estimated to continue posting growing net profit and rising credit growth in the years ahead despite the persistently sluggish domestic economy. However, contrary to the state-controlled banks - such as Bank Mandiri, Bank Negara Indonesia (BNI) and Bank Rakyat Indonesia (BRI) - BCA will most likely not see double-digit credit growth in the near future as BCA's customers mostly originate from the private sector. The state-controlled banks, on the other hand, have the advantage of being involved in the government's push for infrastructure development and government spending.

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  • Analyst Opinion: Indonesia Should Focus on Boosting Purchasing Power

    Analyst Opinion: Indonesia Should Focus on Boosting Purchasing Power

    An Indonesian analyst says the Indonesian government needs to increase efforts to boost people's purchasing power in order to achieve the government's economic growth target of 5.3 percent in 2016. Household consumption in Indonesia accounts for about 55 percent of the nation's total gross domestic product (GDP) growth. As such, if purchasing power continues to weaken, then the economic slowdown returns. The analyst suggests the government should consider to cut personal and corporate income taxes, delay the electricity tariff hike for 900 VA households, and lower fuel prices.

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  • Infrastructure Development Indonesia: Gaining Momentum in 2016

    Infrastructure Development Indonesia: Gaining Momentum in 2016

    After having grown rapidly in the years 2010-2013, infrastructure development in Indonesia lost its momentum in 2014. This was due to limited available government funds, uncertainty caused by the legislative and presidential elections, and the nation's slowing economic growth. After Joko Widodo became Indonesia's seventh president in October 2014, it was expected that infrastructure development would revive. However, it didn't. But Widodo made one important move by seriously reducing energy subsidies, hence making more funds available for infrastructure development.

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  • Economy of Indonesia: Economic Growth at 4.73% y/y in Q3-2015 - Analysis

    Economy of Indonesia: Economic Growth at 4.73% y/y in Q3-2015 - Analysis

    Indonesia's economic performance in the third quarter of 2015 was a bit disappointing as the 4.73 percent year-on-year (y/y) growth pace in Q3-2015 was slightly below market expectations at 4.8 percent (y/y). On a positive note, however, Indonesia's gross domestic product (GDP) growth accelerated from the six-year low of 4.67 percent (y/y) in the preceding quarter. A look at the table below shows that Indonesia's third quarter GDP growth rarely outpaces growth in the second quarter. This is a hopeful sign indeed.

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  • World Bank Releases October 2015 Indonesia Economic Quarterly

    World Bank Releases October 2015 Indonesia Economic Quarterly

    Today (22/10), the World Bank released the October 2015 edition of its flagship Indonesia Economic Quarterly, titled "In Times of Global Volatility". In the report the World Bank states that despite current ongoing global uncertainties (caused by looming monetary tightening in the USA and China's economic slowdown), which make macroeconomic management difficult in the year ahead, pro-active government action could offset the negative impact and may help to boost growth.

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  • Economic Growth of Indonesia in Second Half 2014: Slowing or Growing?

    Indonesia’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the first half of 2014 reached 5.17 percent (year-on-year), thus continuing the slowing growth trend that has been recorded by the country since 2011. Forecasts for GDP growth in the second half of 2014 indicate a slight improvement (to the range of 5.2 to 5.3 percent year-on-year) supported by strong household consumption, increased government spending and further growth of the trade and services sector. However, in recent quarters the official GDP figure has been lower than most forecasts.

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  • Economic Growth of Indonesia in Quarter I-2014 Projected at 5.75%

    Economic Growth of Indonesia in Quarter I-2014 Projected at 5.75%

    Indonesia's gross domestic product (GDP) growth is expected to move sideways in the first quarter of 2014. Finance Minister Chatib Basri forecasts a growth rate of between 5.7 and 5.8 percent, similar to the growth pace that was recorded in the fourth quarter of 2013 (5.78 percent). Based on data from Statistics Indonesia (BPS), economic growth in Indonesia has slowed since the second quarter of 2013. In Q2-2013, Indonesia's GDP expanded by 5.89 percent, thereby ending a ten-quarter streak of +6 percentage growth.

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  • Indonesia Jumps to No. 38 in Global Competitiveness Index 2013-2014

    Indonesia Jumps to No. 38 in Global Competitiveness Index 2013-2014

    In recent weeks, Indonesia has to cope with a large amount of negative publicity as large capital outflows from the country's financial markets occurred, partly due to weak economic results regarding the current account balance, inflation and the the rupiah. Interest rates are rising, thus eroding people's purchasing power and consequently curbing economic growth. However, the Global Competitiveness Index 2013-2014, released by World Economic Forum, contained a positive outcome for Southeast Asia's largest economy.

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  • Indonesian Government Proposes $32.6 Billion of Subsidy Spending in 2014

    The government of Indonesia proposes to allocate IDR 336.24 trillion (USD $32.6 billion) for subsidy spending in the 2014 state budget draft: IDR 284.7 trillion (USD $27.6 billion) for energy subsidies and IDR 51.6 trillion (USD $5.0 billion) for non-energy subsidies. The proposed amount implies a 3.41 percent fall in total subsidy allocation compared to Indonesia's state budget in 2013. However, despite a reduction, subsidy expenditure is still large at 18.5 percent of total government spending (IDR 1,816.7 trillion).

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