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Today's Headlines China

  • Crude Palm Oil Update Indonesia: Outlook CPO Export Not too Great

    Crude Palm Oil Update Indonesia: Outlook CPO Export Not too Great

    The Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association (Gapki) believes that it is difficult for Indonesia to achieve the government’s target of collecting USD $36 billion by 2019 through crude palm oil (CPO) exports as several government policies disturb the performance of CPO exports. Moreover, global commodity prices (including palm oil) are still showing a downward trend - hence limiting foreign exchange earnings - as global economic growth remains sluggish. Economic growth of China, a major CPO importer, is expected to slow further this year.

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  • Weak Growth & Indonesia’s Export Ban Curb China’s Nickel Ore Imports

    Weak Growth & Indonesia’s Export Ban Curb China’s Nickel Ore Imports

    Official data show that in 2014 China, the world’s largest consumer of industrial metals, imported the lowest amount of nickel ore since 2010. Apart from slowing economic growth in the world’s second-largest economy (China’s economic expansion having eased to 7.4 percent year-on-year in 2014), falling nickel ore imports are also caused by Indonesia’s ban on exports of unprocessed minerals (implemented in January 2014) and monsoon rains in the Philippines (limiting production and seaborne trade).

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  • Challenges to the Indonesian Economy: Global Oil Price & US Normalization

    Challenges to the Indonesian Economy: Global Oil Price & US Normalization

    Governor of Indonesia’s central bank (Bank Indonesia) Agus Martowardojo said that there are two main global challenges that are being faced by Southeast Asia’s largest economy and which can impact negatively on the nation’s economy. These challenges are the low global oil prices (which have fallen below USD $50 per barrel) and the monetary policy normalization of the US Federal Reserve amid the structural economic recovery of the USA. This policy involves higher US interest rates (expected in the second half of 2015) and a bullish US dollar.

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  • Chinese Love to Eat Chocolate: Global Cocoa Demand Growing

    Chinese Love to Eat Chocolate: Global Cocoa Demand Growing

    Major chocolate producers recently warned that worldwide economic growth in combination with global population growth will result in a cocoa deficit in a few years hence prices of chocolate are estimated to rise. Especially chocolate consumption in China has risen robustly in recent years. In 2010, the population of China consumed 40,000 tons of chocolate. However, this has now risen by 75 percent to 70,000 tons. Moreover, consumption of dark chocolate, which contains a higher degree of cocoa, has grown in the USA.

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  • World Bank Alerts Indonesia on Tighter External Financing in 2015

    World Bank Alerts Indonesia on Tighter External Financing in 2015

    Despite slowing economic growth in China (the world’s second-largest economy), the World Bank forecasts higher economic growth for emerging markets in 2015 driven by a decline in global oil prices, a stronger US economy, and continued low global interest rates. The World Bank expects to see a 4.8 percent year-on-year (y/y) GDP growth rate in emerging markets this year, up from an estimated 4.4 percent (y/y) in 2014. Meanwhile, the global economy is expected to grow 3 percent (y/y) in 2015.

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  • Analysis: Impact US Monetary Tightening on the Indonesian Economy

    The Standard Chartered Bank expects the economy of Indonesia to accelerate slightly in 2015 compared to this year’s estimated performance. The bank forecasts a growth pace of 5.2 percent year-on-year (y/y) next year, up from 5.1 percent (y/y) in 2014. Standard Chartered Bank economist Eric Sugandi recently said that the Indonesian economy will be affected by two factors: the great rotation (capital outflows from emerging markets ahead of US interest rate hikes) and growth disparity (slowing growth or recession in China and Japan).

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  • Asian Development Bank (ADB) Report: Growth Forecasts Asia Revised

    In its latest report entitled ‘Growth Hesitates in Developing Asia’ (which is a supplement to the ‘Asian Development Outlook 2014 Update’), the Asian Development Bank (ADB) slightly downgraded economic growth in developing Asia to 6.1 percent (y/y) in 2014 from its September estimate of 6.2 percent (y/y). Despite slowing momentum the ADB believes that current low oil prices constitute a great opportunity for Asian countries to conduct structural reforms as many of these countries are net oil importers.

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  • Indonesia & the Global Economy; Rupiah Hit by China & Japan Data

    On Monday morning (08/12), the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate quickly plunged after the release of weak macroeconomic data from Japan and China, two important trading partners of Indonesia. Economic growth in Japan, the world’s third-largest economy, contracted 0.5 percent (quarter-to-quarter) in Q3-2014, while Chinese imports fell 6.7 percent (year-on-year) in November 2014. As a result the Indonesian rupiah had depreciated 0.54 percent to IDR 12,365 per US dollar by 11:30 am local Jakarta time, the weakest level in six years.

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  • Indonesia Signs MoU to Join Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

    Indonesia’s Finance Minister has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in the context of Indonesia’s participation within the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). The AIIB is a new multilateral international financial institution (initiated by China) that is to provide funds for infrastructure projects in the Asia Pacific region. This new institution is seen as a challenge to the World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), and Asian Development Bank (ADB) which are all regarded as being dominated by developed countries.

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  • Indonesia’s Steel Industry Affected by Oversupply in China

    Indonesia’s Steel Industry Affected by Oversupply in China

    Irvan Kamal Hakim, Director at Krakatau Steel (Indonesia’s largest steel manufacturer), said that the domestic steel industry is still affected by prolonged concerns about excess steel supply in China, the world's largest steel producer. Amid slowing economic growth in the world’s second-largest economy, domestic steel demand in China has declined resulting in a global oversupply of 525 million tons. Each 1 percent decline in GDP growth in China results in an additional oversupply of 24 million tons of steel.

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Latest Columns China

  • Rupiah Down but Indonesian Stocks Overcome Weak Economic Data

    Rupiah Down but Indonesian Stocks Overcome Weak Economic Data

    Although initially the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (known as Jakarta Composite index or IHSG) fell after the market responded to today's release of Indonesia's April trade deficit and May inflation, the index ended in the green zone due to foreign net buying and general positive Asian indices (influenced by higher stock indices on Wall Street at the end of last week). Particularly Indonesia's big cap stocks in the miscellaneous industry and consumer sectors were popular as these were relatively cheap after having tumbled at the end of last week.

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  • Jakarta Composite Index: Euphoria on the Indonesian Stock Market

    Investors' appetite for mining and plantation stocks managed to support the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (known as the Jakarta Composite Index or IHSG) on Thursday's trading day (22/05). After the recent decline of the IHSG, market participants continued to accumulate stocks that are considered cheap. Furthermore, indices on Wall Street on Wednesday were up and impacted positively on Asian indices on Thursday, thereby providing positive market sentiments for the IHSG.

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  • Indonesia Rupiah Exchange Rate Update: Resisting the Asian Trend

    Although most Asian emerging currencies strengthened on Thursday (22/05) against the US dollar due to the preliminary HSBC Flash China Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) recovering to 49.7 in May 2014 (from 48.1 one month earlier) and the Federal Reserve Minutes indicating that there will be no US interest rate hike soon, the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate continued to decline. Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the currency had depreciated 0.19 percent to IDR 11,531 per US dollar by 5pm local Jakarta time.

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  • Indonesia Stock Market Update: IHSG Climbs 0.29% on Wednesday

    Indonesia Stock Market Update: IHSG Climbs 0.29% on Wednesday

    Although initially the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (known as the Jakarta Composite Index or IHSG) declined shortly after the opening on Wednesday (21/05), during the remainder of the day it went up. This is a trend which we often detect: after a sharp fall we see a rebound on the following day as investors want to take advantage of 'cheap' stocks. However, the rebound was only limited as investors prefer to wait and see for further market sentiments first. The main positive factor today were rising Asian stock indices.

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  • Indonesian Rupiah Appreciates on Bond Sale and Current Account Data

    Indonesian Rupiah Appreciates on Bond Sale and Current Account Data

    While most emerging Asian currencies fell, the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate appreciated 0.08 percent to IDR 11,523 per US dollar based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index on Monday (12/05). The depreciating Chinese yuan, after its central bank set the midrate at its lowest level in eight months, put pressure on other Asian currencies. Today, Indonesia's Finance Ministry sold IDR 10 trillion rupiah (USD $867 million) of bonds, higher than the indicative target of IDR 8 trillion rupiah. Meanwhile, Indonesia’s two-year bonds gained.

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  • Small Loss for the Benchmark Indonesian Stock Index on Thursday

    Contrary to most Asian stock indices, the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (known as IHSG or the Jakarta Composite Index) declined on Thursday (08/05). Positive sentiments that were provided by the BI rate (Indonesia's benchmark interest rate) that was kept at 7.50% in today's Bank Indonesia Board of Governors' Meeting, and China's higher-than-expected trade balance in April 2014 (USD $18.5 billion), were offset by the depreciating rupiah exchange rate and foreign net selling of Indonesian stocks. The IHSG fell 0.02 percent to 4,860.89 points.

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  • Official Press Release Bank Indonesia: BI Rate Maintained at 7.50%

    Official Press Release Bank Indonesia: BI Rate Maintained at 7.50%

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) decided at today’s Bank Indonesia Board of Governors’ Meeting, convened on 8 May 2014, to maintain the country's benchmark interest rate (BI rate) at 7.50 percent, with the Lending Facility rate and Deposit Facility rate held at 7.50 percent and 5.75 percent respectively. This policy is consistent with efforts to steer the rate of inflation towards its target corridor of 4.5±1 percent in 2014 and 4.0±1 percent in 2015, as well as to reduce the current account deficit to a more sustainable level.

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  • What about Indonesia's Economic Growth in 2014? Growing or Slowing?

    After Statistics Indonesia (BPS) had announced on Monday (05/05) that Indonesia's gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 5.21 percent year-on-year (yoy) in the first quarter of 2014 (considerably below analysts' projections of around 5.6 percent), concerns have risen about the country's economic expansion for the remainder of the year. The government of Indonesia targets a GDP growth rate of between 5.8 and 6.0 percent (yoy). However, several international institutions do not agree with this optimistic target.

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  • Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index Curbed by Slowing GDP Growth

    The benchmark Indonesia stock index (IHSG or Jakarta Composite Index) moved sideways on Monday's trading day (05/05) influenced by Indonesia's disappointing GDP growth result in the first quarter of 2014 in combination with mixed Asian stock indices. At the start of the day, the index was up as investors believed that the Q1-2014 GDP growth result would be in line with expectations. However, after Statistics Indonesia announced the growth rate, the IHSG fell, although stayed in the green zone.

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  • Indonesia's Transition Year of 2015; Slowing GDP Growth & State Spending

    Indonesia's Transition Year of 2015; Slowing GDP Growth and State Spending

    Indonesian Finance Minister Chatib Basri said that the country's economic growth in 2015 is targeted in the range of 5.5 to 6.3 percent. Amid further Federal Reserve tapering and possible interest rate hikes in the world's largest economy, chances of capital outflows from emerging markets (including Indonesia) are becoming larger. Basri said that these global conditions impact on GDP growth, the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate and inflation. Therefore, 2015 is a transition year, reflected by tighter economic projections and state spending.

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