Indonesia’s Chief Economic Minister Keeping 5.7% Growth Target for 2015

APRIL 20, 2015

Jakarta. Indonesia told participants at the 24th World Economic Forum on East Asia that the government is sticking to its 5.7 percent economic growth target for this year despite the country facing external challenges, chief economics minister Sofyan Djalil said on Monday.

“It’s still 5.7 percent [the growth target]. We haven’t revised it. We need to work hard,” said the minister on the sideline of the WEF on East Asia at the Shangri-la hotel in Jakarta.

Some analysts and banks aren’t as optimistic. The World Bank on April 13 slashed its forecast for 2015, saying that it expects Indonesia’s gross domestic product to grow “modestly” at 5.2 percent this year — lower than the 5.6 percent estimate it had projected in October last year. The economy grew 5 percent in 2014, which was the slowest pace in five years. The World Bank said exports were expected to remain weak, while the domestic market was still coping with a high interest rate environment.

Djalil said the WEF is a good forum to explain the government’s policy to investors, including tax incentives and the one-stop integrated service for investment permits.

”With many chief executives coming to this event. We would know more [about Indonesia] from the forum and discussions. All this time, we [had a] lack of communication [for policies],” said Djalil.

The three-day forum, which ends on Tuesday, invited more than 700 attendees, including representatives from multinational companies.

President Joko Widodo also made a remark at the forum on Monday night. He said he was pleased to see investors’ strong interests in participating in the forum, which coincidences with Indonesia hosting the 60th anniversary of the Asian-African Conference in Bandung and Jakarta.

“We are here this week to talk. To talk, but more importantly, to listen,” he said.

“I have asked my ministers to be very honest about our challenges,” Joko added. “I have asked my ministers to listen. But I hope that after spending this week in Jakarta, you will also see our amazing opportunities,” said the president. Joko added “where we see challenges, I see opportunity,” he said.

GlobeAsia and the Jakarta Globe are media partners of the WEF event in Jakarta.