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Today's Headlines Joko Widodo

  • Uncertainty about Indonesia's Palm Oil Export Levy Lingers On

    Uncertainty remains about the timing of the implementation of Indonesia's new palm oil export levies. In May 2015 Indonesian President Joko Widodo signed a new regulation stipulating that a USD $50 (per metric ton) levy is to be imposed on crude palm oil (CPO) exports, and a USD $30 (per metric ton) levy on processed palm oil product exports. Proceeds from these export levies will be used to fund the Indonesian government’s biodiesel (subsidy) program. However, implementation of the new regulation has been delayed several times.

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  • Islamic Banking in Indonesia: ‘I Love Sharia Finance Program’

    Islamic Banking in Indonesia: ‘I Love Sharia Finance Program’

    Indonesian President Joko Widodo stated during the launch of the “I Love Sharia Finance Program” that Indonesia should become the global center for Islamic finance (also known as sharia banking). The program, initiated by the country’s Financial Services Authority (OJK), was launched in Jakarta on Sunday (14/06). Islamic finance is a form of banking or banking activity that is consistent with the principles of sharia (Islamic law). In recent years, the global market for sharia-compliant financial instruments has risen robustly.

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  • Indonesia’s Economic Growth to Slip below 5% Mark in 2015?

    Indonesia’s Economic Growth to Slip below 5% Mark in 2015?

    Several international institutions revised down their outlook for economic growth of Indonesia in 2015 as foreign investors have been somewhat disappointed with the performance of the new Indonesian government, while the global economic picture remains far from rosy. Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Credit Suisse and Nomura Holdings have all slashed Indonesia’s economic growth forecast this year to below the five percent (year-on-year) mark. Last year Indonesia’s economic growth touched a five-year low of 5.02 percent (y/y).

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  • Indonesia Rice Update: Joko Widodo Forced to Allow Rice Imports?

    In order to avert a spike in inflation and social unrest, Indonesian President Joko Widodo may feel forced to allow around 1.5 million metric tons of rice imports in 2015 as domestic prices of rice have been rising on sluggish local harvests. Moreover, an intensifying El Nino is expected to cause dry weather in the months ahead hence further jeopardizing rice productivity. These already tough conditions will be exacerbated by seasonal Islamic celebrations (Ramadan and Idul Fitri) that always trigger increased consumption of food products.

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  • Corporate Tax Indonesia Not to Be Cut Before 2016

    Corporate Tax Indonesia Not to Be Cut Before 2016

    On Monday (11/05) it was reported - quoting an Indonesian tax official - that Indonesian President Joko Widodo had already ordered to cut the country’s corporate tax rate from 25 percent currently to below 18 percent in a bid to attract more investment and to make Indonesia’s business environment more competitive (for example, Singapore’s corporate tax is currently 17 percent). One day later, however, Finance Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro stated that, if the corporate tax is to be revised, it will be next year at the earliest.

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  • Groundbreaking Trans-Sumatra Toll Road; Infrastructure Projects Indonesia

    Infrastructure Indonesia: Groundbreaking Trans-Sumatra Toll Road

    Today, Indonesian President Joko Widodo will lay the first stone for the groundbreaking ceremony of the 2,700 km Trans-Sumatra toll road project, linking Lampung to Aceh on the resource-rich island of Sumatra (Indonesia’s second-largest island in terms of geographic size). The toll road, which is one of the key priority infrastructure projects for the Indonesian government, is estimated to require a total of IDR 300 trillion (USD $23.1 billion) of investment. Ten years after parts of the toll road were first tendered, construction can finally commence.

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  • International Relations Indonesia: Death Penalty for Drug Crimes

    International Relations Indonesia: Death Penalty for Drug Crimes

    This week Indonesia’s police arrested a foreign national in Jakarta in connection to the discovery of 2.2 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine (meth) in a boarding house in Srengseng (West Jakarta). Jakarta Police spokesman Budi Widjanarko said that police action was taken based on intelligence about a syndicate that smuggles crystal meth into Indonesia from Nigeria. Reportedly, this syndicate is led by a Jakarta prison inmate. Recent history shows that Indonesian authorities are very strict on drug-related crimes.

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  • 24th World Economic Forum: Indonesia Wants More Foreign Investment

    24th World Economic Forum: Indonesia Wants More Foreign Investment

    On the sidelines of the 24th World Economic Forum (WEF) on East Asia, Indonesia’s Chief Economic Minister Sofyan Djalil said that - despite global challenges - the government maintains its economic growth target of 5.7 percent (y/y) in 2015. However, he added that it will require great effort to achieve this target. One key strategy to achieve the target is to attract foreign investment through several policies including tax incentives and by easing the country’s bureaucratic hurdles for investment permits.

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  • S&P Awaiting Results from Indonesia’s Economic Policy Reforms

    S&P Awaiting Results from Indonesia’s Economic Policy Reforms

    Global credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s remains the only credit rating agency among the big three to maintain its BB+/stable rating on Indonesia’s sovereign credit (which is one notch below investment grade). Both Fitch Ratings (BBB-/stable) and Moody’s Investor Service (Baa3/stable) had already brought Indonesia back to investment grade in 2011 and 2012. Standard & Poor’s has been reluctant to raise Indonesia’s status as it wants to see more results from the country’s economic policy reforms.

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  • Economic Growth of Indonesia Hits Five-Year Low at 5.02% in 2014

    Economic Growth of Indonesia Hits Five-Year Low at 5.02% in 2014

    The economy of Indonesia expanded 5.02 percent year-on-year (y/y) to IDR 8,354 trillion (USD $664 billion) in 2014, the nation’s slowest annual growth pace since 2009, according to the latest data from Statistics Indonesia (BPS). As such, GDP growth failed to achieve the central government’s 5.5 percentage point growth target that was set in the 2014 State Budget. Indonesia’s economic growth has been slowing since 2011 when it still posted a 6.5 percentage point growth rate (y/y). However, growth is expected to rebound from here.

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Latest Columns Joko Widodo

  • Indonesian Politics & Economy: Looking Back on 2019, Looking Forward to 2020

    Indonesian Politics & Economy: Looking Back on 2019, Looking Forward to 2020

    What marked the year 2019 for Indonesia was national politics. Although in these present times each year feels like a ‘political year’ for Indonesia – as the country’s local elections are spread out across years (and in 2020 it will be the turn of voters in various parts of the Archipelago to elect nine governors, 224 regents and 37 mayors) – the year 2019 was in fact a particularly ‘huge political year’ for Indonesia because of the (general) presidential and legislative elections that were held on 17 April 2019.

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  • New Cabinet Takes Office; Last-Minute Surprise Gives Widodo Majority in Parliament

    New Cabinet Takes Office; Last-Minute Surprise Gives Widodo Majority in Parliament

    Although the signs were there in the past couple of weeks, it still came as a surprise to us that defeated presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto made the last-minute decision to throw his support behind Indonesian President Joko Widodo. It effectively means that his Great Indonesia Movement party (or Gerindra) – previously the biggest opposition party – has now joined Widodo’s coalition, and thereby handing Widodo a massive majority in national parliament.

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  • Overview of Widodo Administration (2014-2019); Accomplishments and Failures

    Overview of the Widodo Administration (2014-2019); What Are the Accomplishments and Failures?

    There was a new kid on the block in national politics ahead of Indonesia's 2014 elections. Joko Widodo (often called Jokowi), gained tremendous popularity among Indonesians when he was Governor of Jakarta (2012-2014). This popularity was based on his humble background as well as his humble behavior, his eagerness to reform existing structures and patterns, and his “pro-people” attitude. Previously, Widodo (who is an ex-furniture businessman) had been mayor of Solo (Central Java) from 2005 to 2012. His time as mayor was a success. However, he would really step into the national spotlight once he had won Jakarta’s gubernatorial election in 2012.

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  • Presidential and Legislative Elections of Indonesia: Our Views on the Unofficial Results

    Presidential and Legislative Elections of Indonesia: Our Views on the Unofficial Results

    Indonesia Investments carefully followed developments surrounding Indonesia’s presidential and legislative elections (which were held on Wednesday 17 April 2019). Although the official results will only be announced in late May (as the General Elections Commission, or KPU, will be busy counting all votes up to 22 May 2019) we can already draw several conclusions from these events.

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  • Road to Indonesia’s 2019 Presidential Election: Gap Narrows after 1st Presidential Debate

    Road to Indonesia’s 2019 Presidential Election: Gap Narrows after 1st Presidential Debate

    On Thursday 17 January 2019 the first debate between the two presidential pairs - (1) Joko Widodo & Ma'ruf Amin and (2) Prabowo Subianto & Sandiaga Uno - took place at Hotel Bidakara in Pancoran (South Jakarta). It is the first one of a total of five planned debates between the presidential and vice-presidential candidates in the months ahead of the legislative and presidential elections that are scheduled for 17 April 2019 (although the date of the 5th debate is yet to be determined).

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  • Political Update: Preparing & Bracing for the Big Political Year of 2019

    Political Update: Preparing & Bracing for the Big Political Year of 2019

    We have entered 2019, which means we have entered a huge political year with the legislative and presidential elections scheduled for 17 April 2019. Indonesia is a young democracy that is maturing – hence experiences growing pains – and where various sides are engaged in a battle to get a hold of the highest political power in Indonesia.

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  • Road to the 2019 Presidential Election; Visions and Missions

    Road to the 2019 Presidential Election; Visions and Missions

    On 23 September 2018 the campaign period officially started for Indonesia’s 2019 presidential election. This period runs up to 13 April 2019 (while the election is scheduled for 17 April 2019). Despite the start of the campaign period it has remained rather calm between the two opposing sides: (1) incumbent President Joko Widodo with Islamic clerk Ma’ruf Amin versus (2) Gerindra Chairman Prabowo Subianto with businessman Sandiaga Uno.

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  • Road to the 2019 Elections: Widodo Picks Islamic Scholar, Subianto Picks Businessman

    Road to the 2019 Elections: Widodo Picks Islamic Scholar, Subianto Picks Businessman as Running Mate

    It is finally clear which pairs will compete in Indonesia’s 2019 presidential election. On Saturday August 10th, 2018 (only hours before the deadline ended), political parties officially registered their presidential and vice-presidential candidates at the General Elections Commission (in Indonesian: Komisi Pemilihan Umum, or KPU). As was widely assumed, only two pairs will compete in the 2019 presidential election. Thus, there are also two coalitions of political parties.

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  • 2019 Presidential Election Indonesia: Widodo-Amin vs Subianto-Uno

    2019 Presidential Election Indonesia: Widodo-Amin vs Subianto-Uno

    It was a very exciting afternoon and evening on Friday (09 August 2018), especially for those who follow contemporary Indonesian politics as well as those who love sinetron (Indonesian soap operas) since there occurred plenty of drama. At the end of the day it became clear that two pairs (consisting of a presidential and vice-presidential candidate) will compete in the 2019 presidential election: (1) Joko Widodo and Ma'ruf Amin versus (2) Prabowo Subianto and Sandiaga Uno.

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