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Today's Headlines Joko Widodo

  • Rice Update Indonesia: In Search of Rice Self-Sufficiency

    The price of rice in several Indonesian regions has risen by between 17 to 23 percent to IDR 8,500-9,000 per kilogram as rice production at the start of the year has not been able to meet rice demand. In January 2015, Indonesian rice production stood at 2 million tons, whereas demand reached 2.5 million tons. Inflation of rice is a sensitive issue in Indonesia because it jeopardizes declining poverty rates as poorer segments of Indonesian society spend over half of their total disposable income on food items, primarily rice.

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  • Inflation Outlook Indonesia January 2015: Impact of Fuel Policy

    Inflation in Indonesia is expected to have eased to 7.50 percent year-on-year (y/y) in January 2015 on the back of cheaper domestic fuel prices (triggered by sliding global oil prices). The month-on-month pace (m/m) in the first month of 2015 may have tumbled to near zero percent from 2.46 percent (m/m) in December 2014. Last year, Indonesian inflation had accelerated to 8.36 percent (y/y) primarily due to the implementation of higher prices for government administered low-octane gasoline and diesel in November 2014.

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  • Indonesia’s One-Stop Investment Licensing Service at BKPM Launched

    Indonesian President Joko Widodo officially launched the integrated one-stop service center (in Indonesian Pelayanan Terpadu Satu Pintu, abbreviated PTSP) at the Indonesia Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) at the start of the week. This new service aims to smoothen and simplify licensing procedures for investment projects. From now on, investors will not need to visit various ministries or government agencies to obtain necessary permits but can simply turn to the BKPM’s one-stop service center.

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  • Government of Indonesia Cuts Prices of Low-Octane Gasoline and Diesel

    Due to sharply fallen global crude oil prices the Indonesian government announced on Friday (16/01) that prices of fuels (low-octane gasoline and diesel) will be cut by an average of 14 percent, effective from Monday (19/01). The price of gasoline will drop 13 percent to IDR 6,600 (USD $0.53) per liter and diesel by 15 percent to IDR 6,400 (USD $0.51) per liter. Lastly, the government also reduced the price of Pertamina’s liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) by 4.2 percent to IDR 129,000 per 12-kilogram-cannister.

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  • 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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  • World Bank Report: GDP Growth Indonesia Revised to 5.2% in 2015

    On Monday (08/12) the World Bank released the December edition of its Indonesia Economic Quarterly, entitled ‘Delivering Chance’. In the report the World Bank cut its forecast for economic growth in Indonesia next year to 5.2 percent (y/y), from 5.6 percent (y/y) in the July edition of its flagship publication, due to weaker investment growth and sluggish exports. Indonesia’s GDP growth in 2014 is projected at 5.1 percent (y/y), slightly below the World Bank’s previous estimate of 5.2 percent.

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  • Sea Toll Road of Indonesia will Reduce Country's Logistics Costs Sharply

    The sea toll road, a maritime program initiated by Indonesian President Joko Widodo, may reduce the country’s logistics costs by 10 to 15 percent, said Secretary of the Expert Team of the National Logistics System, Nofrisel. Currently, between 18 and 22 percent of companies’ production costs in Indonesia are absorbed by logistics costs, particularly due to expensive transportation costs, hence seriously reducing competitiveness of Indonesian companies. In peer regional countries this figure is below ten percent.

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  • Bank Indonesia Expects Inflation at 8% after Subsidized Fuel Price Hike

    According to the central bank of Indonesia, inflation may reach around 8 percent (year-on-year) by the end of 2014 as a result of the higher subsidized fuel prices. In the early hours of Tuesday (18/11), subsidized fuel prices (gasoline and diesel) were raised by more than 30 percent in an attempt to reallocate government funds to more productive sectors as well as to curb the country’s wide current account deficit. Peaks in Indonesia’s inflation usually correlate with administered price adjustments.

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  • News Stories Indonesia: Reactions to the Subsidized Fuel Price Hike

    Main news headlines in Indonesia still cover the higher subsidized fuel prices implemented starting from the early hours of Tuesday (18/11). The previous evening, Indonesian President Joko Widodo had announced that prices of subsidized gasoline and diesel were to be raised by over 30 percent, immediately leading to long queues at local gas stations as well as public outcry as people’s purchasing power will diminish. Analysts and economists, however, agree that this move is correct and can lead to structurally higher GDP growth.

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  • Fuel Subsidies Indonesia: Central Bank to Hold Extraordinary Meeting

    Indonesian President Joko Widodo announced yesterday evening (17/11) that prices of subsidized fuels will be raised by over 30 percent starting from midnight in an effort to reduce state expenses on non-productive matters. Low-octane gasoline (premium) will now cost IDR 8,500 (USD $0.70) per liter, while diesel now costs IDR 7,500 (USD $0.62) per liter. This sudden announcement immediately led to long queues at local gas stations as people still had three hours to enjoy cheaper fuel rates.

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Latest Columns Joko Widodo

  • Widodo Wants Moratorium on New Palm Oil Concessions in Indonesia

    Indonesian President Joko Widodo has ordered the nation's Minister of Environment and Forestry Siti Nurbaya to issue a moratorium on new palm oil concessions in a number of provinces. Although Widodo wants Indonesia - the world's top producer and exporter of crude palm oil (CPO) - to raise CPO output, he believes this increase can be achieved by increasing productivity of existing palm oil plantations, not by adding new plantations. Indonesia is often criticized by environmentalist groups for its forestry policies and poor law enforcement (which led to the severe haze that spread through Southeast Asia last year).

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  • Joko Widodo Orders Investigation into Indonesian Links in Panama Papers

    Indonesian President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) called for an investigation into the Indonesian people and companies mentioned in the Panama Papers, the massive leak involving 11.5 million confidential documents from the database of Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca. These documents list names numerous people - including of political figures, businessmen, celebrities and sport stars - who have created secret shell companies and offshore accounts in tax havens (possibly in an effort to avoid tax obligations).

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  • Masela Gas Project Indonesia: Widodo Opts for Onshore LNG Plant

    Indonesian President Joko Widodo decided that the Masela liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant will be constructed onshore. Masela, located in the Arafura Sea (Moluccas), is Indonesia's largest deep-water gas project. Previously, Japan-based oil company Inpex Corp and Netherlands-based Royal Dutch Shell proposed to construct the LNG plant offshore (which would have made it the world's largest floating LNG plant). On Wednesday (23/03) President Widodo rejected the proposal after months of polemic. Contractors Inpex and Shell are not expected to withdraw from the project but will need time to adjust plans.

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  • Joko Widodo to Visit the Netherlands to Improve Trade Relations?

    Indonesian President Joko Widodo may visit the Netherlands in 2016. In an interview with Dutch newspaper "De Telegraaf" newly appointed Indonesian ambassador to the Netherlands Gusti Agung Wesaka Puja hinted at Widodo's visit to the Netherlands. Ambassador Puja informed further that more information about this possible state visit is to follow in the next couple of weeks. "You will be surprised," he was quoted saying. Reportedly, Bert Koenders, Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs, will visit Indonesia in the next two weeks to prepare Widodo's visit.

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  • World Bank: SPAN Improves Indonesia's Efficiency, Transparency & Accountability

    A new financial management system was launched in April 2015 by the Indonesian government. This new system, called Sistem Perbendaharaan dan Anggaran Negara (abbreviated SPAN), aims to enhance public efficiency, transparency and accountability in Indonesia by managing the financial transactions of more than 24,000 government spending units in all 33 provinces. According to a new World Bank story, Indonesia's new financial system has managed to improve efficiency, transparency and accountability. Moreover, it improves budget planning and spending.

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  • Jokowi Visits Silicon Valley; Inspiration for Indonesia's Digital Economy

    During Indonesian President Joko Widodo's visit to Googleplex, Silicon Valley (California) - headquarters of Google, Facebook, Twitter and Plug and Play - he emphasized that the government of Indonesia is committed to push for the development of the digital economy, aiming to make it the largest in Southeast Asia, worth USD $130 billion by 2020 (including the emergence of 1,000 Indonesian technopreneurs). In this context, Widodo also requested the assistance of Google, Facebook and Plug and Play in the form of IT development education.

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  • 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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  • Economic Policy Package Indonesia: What are the Stimulus Measures?

    In response to the ailing global economy, Indonesian President Joko Widodo has unveiled a new economic policy package that aims to boost economic growth of Indonesia amid a highly uncertain global context. On Wednesday (09/09), Joko Widodo (often called Jokowi) provided some details about the first phase of this new stimulus package during a speech at the State Palace in Jakarta.

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  • Geothermal Development Indonesia: Reducing Reliance on Fossil Fuels

    Indonesian President Joko Widodo (often called Jokowi) emphasized that the government of Indonesia needs to boost development of renewable energy. Although Indonesia contains huge potential for renewable energy (particularly geothermal energy), the share of renewable energy in Indonesia’s total energy use currently stands at around 5 percent only, the remainder being fossil energy. By providing incentives, attractive tariffs and an easier licensing and registration process, the government can generate more investment in this sector.

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  • Remarkable News Indonesia: to Insult or Criticize the President?

    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.

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