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Trade Surplus Widens But Export Growth Weak


The trade surplus for September widened more than expected to $3.4bn from $3.1bn due to weaker than forecast imports. Bloomberg consensus had projected a narrowing to around $2.3bn. Import growth fell 12.5% y/y a slight improvement from -14.8% in August but a lot softer than the -5% forecast. Export growth improved to a contraction of 16.2% y/y from -21.2%.

  • Exports have been weak due to falling commodity prices but there was a drop in gas and non-oil shipments too. The value of coal exports fell 47% y/y in September and palm oil -23.5% y/y.
  • Bank Indonesia is likely to be monitoring export developments closely as they are an important source of foreign currency. In recent months, FX term deposits for export earnings were introduced and are increasingly being used as a way to manage the IDR.
Indonesia exports vs imports y/y% 3mma

Source: MNI - Market News/Refinitiv

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