Indonesian exports and imports fell steeply in February, taking the country’s current account back into positive territory ahead of April’s general election.

Year-on-year exports in February dropped 11 per cent as trade tensions weighed on the Southeast Asian country’s economy, while imports also fell by 14 per cent, reflecting the government’s success in curbing foreign purchases. 

This took Indonesia’s current account to a surplus of $330m, surprising analysts who had forecast a deficit of $700m in a Reuters poll. 

Indonesia signed a trade pact with Australia at the beginning of March as part of a bid to reverse the slump in exports in recent months that hit as the world’s largest Muslim-majority country began gearing up for a general election in April, which will pit President Joko Widodo against former lieutenant-general Prabowo Subianto.


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