There has been rising speculation in Indonesia in recent months that Indonesian President Joko Widodo will decide for another cabinet reshuffle as several ministers are held responsible for the disappointing performance of their ministries (that have reacted too slow to implement new government guidelines, for example those guidelines set in the series of economic policy packages that have been released since September 2015). On 12 August 2015, Widodo had already reshuffled his cabinet, replacing six ministers.
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20 September 2017 (closed)
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Today's Headlines Government of Indonesia
A Finance Ministry official said Indonesia's state budget deficit is likely to exceed the projected IDR 300 trillion (approx. USD $22 billion) in 2015, pushing the deficit to 2.7 percent of Indonesia's gross domestic product (GDP), dangerously close to the maximum 3 percent of GDP cap that is set by a 2003 law. In the original 2015 State Budget the government targeted a budget deficit of 1.9 percent of GDP. This target was then revised to 2.2 percent in September. However, another revision is needed due to poor tax revenue collection.
On Friday (14/08) the Indonesian government unveiled its 2016 State Budget draft at a session in the House of Representatives (DPR). The draft is important as it shows government targets regarding the macroeconomy of Indonesia and it shows on what fields the government will focus in terms of public spending. The government - led by Indonesian President Joko Widodo - is optimistic that economic growth will finally rebound after four years of slowing economic growth as its 2016 GDP growth target was set at 5.5 percent (y/y).
Apart from Indonesia's current account deficit, another indicator that is closely watched by the investor community is the country's inflation rate. After subsidized fuel prices were raised in late-June, inflation soared to 8.61 percent in July (YoY), weakening people's purchasing power (as domestic consumption accounts for about 55 percent of economic growth), thus eroding economic growth, investments and the currency. On Monday (02/09), Statistics Indonesia will release the official August inflation rate.
The macroeconomic assumptions that have been formulated in the 2014 State Budget Draft by the government of Indonesia are not considered too realistic by several analysts. Although it is understood that one should set a high standard in order to maximize efforts, analysts feel that - given the current problematic economic context in Asian emerging economies as well as global economic turmoil - the government is far too optimistic, particularly because the government will have to devote part of its attention to the elections in mid-2014.
The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) expects inflation to moderate to 4.5 percent in 2014 if the country's current account balance can be turned into a surplus. Currently, Indonesia's trade balance shows a deficit as global demand for Indonesia's commodities has reduced due to international economic turmoil, while Indonesia continues to import large quantities of oil. If the deficit can be reversed into a surplus it will curtail inflation and automatically have a positive impact on Indonesia's currency (IDR rupiah).
Latest Columns Government of Indonesia
The Indonesian government is still studying the possibility of building a new capital city in Indonesia, thus replacing Jakarta that has become overcrowded with approximately 10 million official residents (the real figure may be much higher as many unregistered Indonesians live in the capital). Moreover, every morning there is a huge inflow of people (originating from the satellite cities around Jakarta) who are heading to their office or place of work. This causes great pressure on the city's fragile infrastructure.
In the past couple of days Indonesian media touched upon the government’s proposal to revive a law that had been removed by Indonesia’s Constitutional Court in 2006. This law makes the act of insulting the Indonesian president an illegal act and can lead to prison sentences and fines. Criticism on the government’s proposal immediately emerged as several legislators and human rights activists fear that freedom of speech will be curtailed in the young democracy. Moreover, it can further erode public support for President Joko Widodo.
The government of Indonesia is busy preparing seven tax incentives to boost investment flows in 2014. Investments currently account for approximately 32 percent of the country's gross domestic product (GDP). Only domestic consumption owns a larger stake towards the economy with 55 percent. The regulatory framework related to the seven incentives is expected to be finalized by the end of this year. The incentives consist of five new ones and the relaxation of two older incentives, namely the tax holiday and tax allowance.
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