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Today's Headlines China

  • Economy of Indonesia: Government Targets GDP Growth of 5.8% in 2015

    The Indonesian government is optimistic that the country’s economic growth will accelerate to 5.8 percent (year-on-year) in 2015 from an expected growth pace of 5.5 percent in 2014. The key to next year’s improved gross domestic product (GDP) growth of Indonesia is the higher forecast for global economic growth. In 2015, the world economy is estimated to grow 3.9% (yoy), higher than the outlook for this year’s growth at 3.6 percent. As such, the government’s outlook is in line the central bank’s GDP growth forecast in the range of 5.4 to 5.8 percent.

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  • World Bank Cuts its Global Economic Growth Forecast to 2.8% in 2014

    The World Bank cut its global economic growth forecast because of the weaker outlooks for the economies of the USA, Russia and China, as well as the geopolitical tensions between Russia and Ukraine which triggered worldwide concerns. The Washington-based institution expects to see 2.8 percent of global economic growth in 2014, far below its January 2014 estimate of 3.2 percent. However, it kept its global growth forecasts for the next two years at 3.4 percent and 3.5 percent, respectively.

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  • World Bank: China’s Economic Growth Moderates on Transformation

    According to the World Bank, China’s economic growth will moderate over the medium term as the country’s economy rebalances gradually. In 2014, GDP growth is expected to slow to 7.6 percent (year-on-year/yoy), and declining further to 7.5 percent (yoy) in 2015. The World Bank’s latest China Economic Update mentions: “The slowdown in the first quarter reflected a combination of dissipating effects of earlier measures to support economic expansion, a weak external environment, and tighter credit, especially for real estate.”

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  • Indonesian Rupiah Rate Update: Up on Data from China and Japan

    The Indonesian rupiah exchange rate has appreciated 0.50 percent to IDR 11,779 per US dollar by 16:00pm local Jakarta time on Monday (09/06). This performance is in line with the general trend in Asia where emerging market currencies strengthened against the greenback on today’s trading day. The rupiah is among today’s best-performing emerging currencies as it was boosted by the higher trade surplus of China (one of Indonesia’s most important trading partners) and economic growth in Japan.

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  • Bank Indonesia Expects Trade Deficit in April and Low Inflation in May

    Central Bank of Indonesia Expects Trade Deficit in April 2014

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) expects to see a trade deficit in the month of April 2014 due to a significant increase of imports (around 11 percent month-to-month), while prices of a number of important export commodities have been under pressure (including coal and crude palm oil). Governor of Bank Indonesia Agus Martowardojo said that weak demand from China impacts negatively on the trade balance. Bank Indonesia's statement contradicts the institution's earlier statement which hinted at a surplus of USD $600 million in April.

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  • Political Stability Needed in East Asia to Enhance Higher Economic Growth

    The start of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in 2015 will turn the ASEAN region into a strong economic block. However, the region should enhance political stability and foster economic justice. These are the two basic conclusions drawn in the World Economic Forum on East Asia in Manila (the Philippines) on Thursday (22/05). This forum is a meeting place for state leaders, global businesses, politicians as well as scholars. Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono was one of the attendees.

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  • Coal Production of Indonesia at 147 Million Tons in First Four Months of 2014

    An official at Indonesia's Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources stated that the production of coal in the first four months of 2014 grew five percent (year-on-year) to 147 million tons. As such, the country is still on track to meet this year's coal production target of 426 million tons. Exports of Indonesian coal totaled 109 million tons in the January-April 2014 period, while the remainder (38 million tons) was sold on the domestic market. Indonesia, Southeast Asia's largest economy, is one of the world's largest producers and exporters of coal.

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  • Current Account Deficit of Indonesia Eases to USD $4.2 Billion in Q1-2014

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) announced that the improving trend of the current account deficit continued in the first quarter (January-March) of 2014. The current account deficit fell from USD $4.3 billion, equivalent to 2.12 percent of the country's gross domestic product (GDP) in the fourth quarter of 2013 to USD $4.2 billion (2.06 percent of GDP) in Q1-2014. This improvement was brought about due to a decrease in imports of goods and the narrowing deficits in the services and income accounts.

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  • Indonesian Rupiah Exchange Rate Update: Export Concerns & BI Rate

    The Indonesian rupiah exchange rate continued its recent depreciating trend on Thursday (08/05). According to the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the currency had depreciated 0.36 percent to IDR 11,619 per US dollar at 13:30 local Jakarta time. Apart from market participants' wait and see attitude ahead of results of Bank Indonesia's Board of Governors Meeting, which is held today and will inform whether the current benchmark interest rate of 7.50 percent will be maintained, increased concerns about exports to China also put pressure on the rupiah.

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  • IMF: Asia Continues to Be the Engine of Global Economic Growth

    IMF: Asia Continues to Be the Engine of Global Economic Growth

    The International Monetary Fund (IMF) assesses that the Asian region is still the world's most dynamic region in terms of economic growth. The IMF expects that Asia's economic growth will accelerate to 5.4 percent in 2014 despite the ongoing US Federal Reserve tapering of asset purchases. However, the IMF continued to stress the need for further structural reforms in Asia in an attempt to avert the negative impact of US tapering and future interest rate hikes. In 2013, the Asian region grew 5.2 percent.

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Latest Columns China

  • Indonesia’s Currency still above 14,000 per USD, Why a Weak Rupiah is a Problem

    Although Indonesian stocks managed to rebound, the rupiah continued to depreciate against the US dollar today (25/08). However, rupiah weakening was limited as Bank Indonesia was closely monitoring and intervening in markets to support the rupiah. Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the Indonesian rupiah depreciated 0.03 percent to IDR 14,054 per US dollar. As significant further rupiah weakening is assumed to seriously undermine confidence in the rupiah, the central bank’s intervention efforts are well received by investors.

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  • Press Release Bank Indonesia: BI Rate Held at 7.50% in August 2015

    Press Release Bank Indonesia: BI Rate Held at 7.50% in August 2015

    During Bank Indonesia’s Board of Governors it was decided on 18th August 2015 to hold the BI Rate at 7.50 percent, while maintaining the Deposit Facility rate at 5.50 percent and the Lending Facility rate at 8.00 percent. The decision is consonant with efforts to control inflation within the target corridor of 4±1 percent in 2015 and 2016. In the short term, Bank Indonesia (BI) is focused on efforts to stabilize the rupiah amid uncertainty in the global economy, by optimizing monetary operations in the rupiah and the foreign exchange market.

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  • Weaker Yuan Likely to Weigh on Indonesian Businesses

    Weaker Yuan Likely to Weigh on Indonesian Businesses

    For most of this year, the financial media has held a generally positive tone. There have been some exceptions in cases like the Eurozone which is still mired in a deeply divided sovereign debt crisis. But for most of the world, 2015 has been a positive period in terms of general growth in their broad trends. So it might be easy for macro investors to assume that most markets are currently establishing themselves in the bullish direction.

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  • Rising Unemployment in Indonesia as Coal Miners Cease Production

    Rising Unemployment in Indonesia as Coal Miners Cease Production

    In the 2000s many Indonesian companies diversified their business to include coal mining (or shifting their core business to coal mining altogether) due to lucrative opportunities amid the 2000s commodities boom. However, since 2009 mining companies have had to face tough times. Especially since 2011 commodity prices have shown a declining trend and there remains little hope of a rebound on the short term as the sluggish global economic growth trend persists, particularly led by the economic slowdown in China.

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  • Indonesia 8th Largest Shareholder Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

    Indonesia 8th Largest Shareholder Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB)

    Indonesia is the eight-largest shareholder within the newly established Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). The Indonesian Finance Ministry announced earlier this week that the country will invest USD $672.1 million in the AIIB over the next five years. The AIIB is a new multilateral financial institution (initiated by China) that is to provide funds for infrastructure development projects in the Asia Pacific region. Initially, the AIIB has an authorized capital of USD $50 billion. This is expected to grow to USD $100 billion.

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  • Market Update Indonesia: Why Stocks Rose but the Rupiah Weakened?

    Market Update Indonesia: Why Stocks Rose but the Rupiah Weakened?

    In line with other Asian indices, Indonesian stocks rose on Tuesday (26/05). The benchmark Jakarta Composite Index rose 0.62 percent to 5,320.90 points. Positive sentiments did not originate from the USA as US stock markets were closed for a holiday yesterday but primarily stemmed from China where the economic planning agency announced to implement several new policies in a bid to boost the sluggish economy. The rupiah, however, depreciated 0.25 percent to IDR 13,220 per US dollar based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index.

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  • Commodity Watch: Influence Indonesian Export Ban on Nickel Price Short-Lived

    Commodity Watch: Influence Indonesia’s Export Ban on Nickel Price Short-Lived

    At the start of 2014 Indonesia introduced its long-planned export ban on raw mineral ores in a bid to strengthen the domestic economy by reducing its dependence on raw commodity exports and instead forcing miners to process their raw ores domestically before exporting is allowed. Being an important global supplier of certain ores, this new Indonesian rule (stipulated by Law No.4/2009 on Coal and Mineral Mining) has a considerable impact on global markets and prices, one of which being nickel.

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  • Obstacles in Indonesia’s Investment Climate: A Chinese Perspective

    Obstacles in Indonesia’s Investment Climate: A Chinese Perspective

    Indonesia is not the easiest place to invest for foreign investors. This is reflected by the World Bank's Doing Business 2014 index in which Indonesia ranks 120th. In a business forum, held last week in Beijing, Chinese businessmen expressed a number of matters that blocked or seriously delayed their investments in Indonesia. For Indonesia (both domestic and foreign) investment realization, particularly in infrastructure, is important as investments is considered the main driver for the country’s economic growth in 2016.

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  • Indonesia’s Reference Coal Price Hits All-Time Low in May 2015

    Indonesia’s Reference Coal Price Hits All-Time Low in May 2015

    On Monday (11/05), it was announced that the reference coal price of Indonesia declined 5.2 percent (month-on-month) to an all-time low of USD $61.08 per metric ton in May. This benchmark price, which is set by the government each month based on the average of four coal indexes (Indonesia Coal Index, Platts Index, New Castle Export Index and New Castle Global Coal Index), continued to plummet due to the coal oversupply in combination with weak global coal demand (particularly falling demand from China).

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  • Jakarta Composite Index: What is Next for Indonesian Stocks?

    Jakarta Composite Index: What is Next for Indonesian Stocks?

    Stock markets in Indonesia have been particularly volatile in recent weeks, and this has left many investors wondering about whether or not the rally that started last October is still viable and ready to continue. Last month, the MSCI Indonesia Index (which trades under the stock symbol EIDO) took a large drop - from well above the 6,500 mark to below 6,000. From a percentage perspective, a move like this can generate significant losses for those that bought into Indonesian stocks while they were still at elevated levels.

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