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Today's Headlines 2014 Elections

  • Japanese Investment in Indonesia Slowed in 2014 but Rebound Detected

    Japanese Investment in Indonesia Slowed in 2014 but Rebound Detected

    Japanese investment in Indonesia has declined drastically in 2014 due to concern about the stability of Indonesian politics. Investment realization tumbled to USD $2.7 billion in 2014 from USD $4.7 billion in the previous year. The investment climate of Indonesia in 2014 was plagued by concern about the ‘political year’, referring to the legislative and presidential elections that were organized and the uncertainty they brought about as it was a tight race between market favorite Joko Widodo and controversial candidate Prabowo Subianto.

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  • Government of Indonesia Eager to Limit Investment in Cement Industry

    The Indonesian government wants to limit investment opportunities in the country’s cement industry in an attempt to maintain a healthy business climate. Indonesian Industry Ministry official Harjanto said that Indonesia’s current cement production capacity is more than enough to meet domestic demand. Given that most established cement producers have expansion plans the influx of new cement producers leads to an oversupply thus reducing companies’ profit margins. The nation’s cement production capacity stands at 77 million tons per year.

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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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  • Cement Consumption in Indonesia Declines in 2014

    Cement Consumption in Indonesia Declines in 2014

    Growth of cement sales in Indonesia is estimated to have slowed in 2014 amid uncertainties brought about by the ‘political year’ (referring to the fragmented results of the country’s legislative and presidential elections and which led to the postponement of various infrastructure projects and other investments in Indonesia). Other factors that impacted negatively on cement sales this year were the central bank’s higher interest rate policy, low commodity prices and weakening purchasing power.

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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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  • Political Update: Pact Awesome Indonesia & Red-White Coalitions

    Tensions within Indonesian parliament may have eased after the two opposing coalitions signed a limited power-sharing pact on Monday (17/11) after weeks of negotiations. This pact is expected to reinforce investor confidence in Indonesian politics amid improved political certainty. Previously, parliament was divided into two rival coalitions: the Awesome Indonesia Coalition (Koalisi Indonesia Hebat), which backs Indonesian President Joko Widodo, and the Red-White Coalition (Koalisi Merah-Putih), which is led by Prabowo Subianto.

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  • Cement Sales in Indonesia Rise on Infrastructure and Property Projects

    Cement sales in Indonesia surged 21 percent month-to-month (m/m) to 5.6 million ton in September 2014 from 4.6 million ton in the preceding month. Widodo Santoso, Chairman of the Indonesian Cement Association (ASI), said that the increase in Indonesian cement sales was supported by the start of a number of central and regional government infrastructure projects. Santoso also detected an increase in development of property projects. Infrastructure and property are the sectors that absorb most cement.

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  • Update on Indonesian Cement Industry: Prospects for 2014 and Beyond

    Indonesian cement sales fell 25 percent to 3.7 million tons in July 2014 from 5 million tons in the same month last year. This sharp decline is attributed to the Lebaran holiday (also known as Idul Fitri in which Muslims celebrate the end of the fasting month) when businesses are closed as well as Indonesia’s July 2014 presidential election. Slowing cement sales are also caused by declining economic growth (5.12 percent yoy in Q2-2014). Cement sales are a key indicator for construction activity (infrastructure and property development).

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  • Indonesia’s Non-Oil & Gas Manufacturing Industry Grows 5.49%

    Growth of Indonesia’s non-oil and gas manufacturing industry in the first half of 2014 reached 5.49 percent (year-on-year) and thus outpaced the country’s general economic growth of 5.17 percent (yoy) over the same period. Indonesia’s manufacturing industry growth was particularly supported by growth in a number of sectors: Food, Drinks and Tobacco (+9.62 percent), Wood and Other Forest Products (+6.35 percent), Transportation Equipment Industry and Machinery (+4.52 percent), and Other Industrial Products (+15.77 percent).

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  • Bank Indonesia Comments on Slowing Economic Growth in Q2-2014

    Indonesia’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the second quarter of 2014 slowed to 5.12 percent (year-on-year, yoy), thus decelerating compared to the nation’s GDP growth in the previous quarter (5.22 percent yoy). The Q2-2014 GDP growth result was lower than the figure that was projected by the central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia). The institution previously stated that it expected Q2-014 economic growth to reach 5.3 percent (yoy). Below are some comment of Bank Indonesia on economic growth in the second quarter.

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Latest Columns 2014 Elections

  • Investors Prefer to Wait & See before Buying Indonesian Stocks

    As I have mentioned before, Indonesia's benchmark stock index (better known as the Jakarta Composite Index or IHSG) runs the risk of declining amid a lack of domestic or external positive market sentiments. Despite the indices on Wall Street being up on the higher than expected markit services PMI as well as ISM-non manufacturing PMI, it was unable to uplift sentiments in Jakarta. Market participants seem to wait & see in the first week of May 2014, evidenced by the reduced trading volume and value of transactions.

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  • Bank Indonesia May Hike Interest Rates to Safeguard Financial Stability

    Bank Indonesia May Hike Interest Rates to Safeguard Financial Stability

    Standard Chartered Bank Economist Eric Sugandi expects that the central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) will have raised its benchmark interest rate (BI rate) by 50 basis points (bps) to 8.00 percent by the end of 2014. Sugandi also said that it is highly unlikely that Bank Indonesia will lower its BI rate in the next two years amid further Federal Reserve tapering and possible US interest rate hikes in 2015 and 2016. Moreover, the Indonesian government may still decide to reduce fuel subsidies further (thus triggering inflationary pressures).

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  • Preliminary Analysis Parliamentary Election Result in Indonesia

    A Preliminary Analysis of the Parliamentary Election Result in Indonesia

    Although several quick counts of today's legislative election in Indonesia still continue, the big picture is clear. The current opposition party PDI-P will win Indonesia's 2014 parliamentary election, followed by Golkar and Gerindra. This is no surprise as most surveys that were released ahead of the election indicated that these three political parties would be the major contenders. As a whole, the election went relatively smoothly, with only a few minor incidents. The official result will be announced on 9 May 2014.

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  • Indonesian Rupiah Exchange Rate Up Ahead of Parliamentary Election

    Most emerging market currencies, including the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate, appreciated against the US dollar on Tuesday (08/04) due to carry trade (meaning the selling of low-yield currencies for higher-yielding assets) and expected stimulus from China's government to boost its economy (Chinese shares in fact gained 2.2 percent on this stimulus speculation). The rupiah appreciated 0.14 percent to IDR 11,289 per US dollar based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, partly due to variety of domestic factors.

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  • Bank Indonesia Maintains Benchmark Interest Rate (BI Rate) at 7.50%

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) decided to maintain its benchmark interest rate (BI rate) at 7.50 percent at the Board of Governors’ Meeting held on Tuesday 8 April 2014. The Lending Facility rate and Deposit Facility rate were held at 7.50 percent and 5.75 percent respectively. This policy is consistent with ongoing efforts to steer inflation back 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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  • Parliamentary Election in Indonesia; Overview of Popular Political Parties

    Parliamentary Election in Indonesia; Overview of Popular Political Parties

    On Wednesday 9 April 2014, the Indonesian electorate (consisting of about 190 million people out of a total population of around 250 million) will vote for both the country's national and regional legislatures. This legislative election also bears a big influence on the presidential election that is scheduled for 9 July 2014 as a minimum of 25 percent of the popular vote in the legislative election (or 20 percent of seats in the House of Representatives, DPR) gives a party the authority to nominate a presidential candidate.

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  • World Bank: March 2014 Indonesia Economic Quarterly Investment in Flux

    World Bank: March 2014 Indonesia Economic Quarterly "Investment in Flux"

    Today (18/03), the World Bank released the March 2014 edition of its Indonesia Economic Quarterly (IEQ), titled Investment in Flux. The report discusses key developments over the past three months in Indonesia’s economy, and places these developments in a longer-term and global context. Secondly, it provides a more in-depth examination of selected economic and policy issues, as well as analysis of Indonesia’s medium-term development challenges. Click here for further information about the World Bank and its activities in Indonesia.

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  • The Jokowi Effect: Indonesia's Financial Markets Gain on Political Certainty

    A shock wave went through Indonesia's financial markets on Friday (14/03) after 15:00 local Jakarta time, when it became known that Joko Widodo (popularly known as Jokowi) is joining the presidential race for the July 2014 election. Moreover, he can count on full support from the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), one of Indonesia's largest political parties, led by chairwoman Megawati Soekarnoputri. Few people doubt that Jokowi - current Governor of Jakarta - will be elected as the next president of Indonesia.

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  • Jokowi Candidate for Indonesian Presidency; Markets React Positively

    Jokowi Candidate for Indonesian Presidency; Markets React Positively

    After months of uncertainty and speculation, Governor of Jakarta Joko Widodo (popularly known as Jokowi) has finally declared to run for the Indonesian presidency in the presidential election scheduled for 9 July 2014. Jokowi is backed by the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), one of the largest political parties in Indonesia, led by chairwoman Megawati Sukarnoputri. On Friday (14/03), Megawati released a statement in which she announced to fully support Jokowi in the upcoming elections.

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  • Indonesian Rupiah Exchange Rate's New Equilibrium at IDR 11,000?

    Indonesian Rupiah Exchange Rate's New Equilibrium at IDR 11,000?

    Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Hatta Rajasa said that the rupiah exchange rate's new equilibrium is at IDR 11,000 per US dollar. As the economic fundamentals of Indonesia's economy have improved in recent months - evidenced by the easing current account deficit and inflation - the rupiah has shown a strong performance, appreciating around six percent against the US dollar in 2014 (year to date). In fact, Rajasa warned that the rupiah should not strengthen too much as this impacts negatively on Indonesia's trade balance.

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