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December 7, 2008

ADB lends $5bn to Indonesia

Indonesia has secured emergency loans worth five billion dollars to help plug its budget deficit and boost growth, authorities have said, reported AFP.

"The loans, which come from the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, Japan, Australia and France, can be drawn upon whenever Indonesia needs them," finance ministry official Rahmat Waluyanto told AFP on Saturday.

"Donors still perceive Indonesia as an important and strategic country. We should keep the momentum of our economic development going," he said, adding that raising money through government bonds would prove expensive due to high interest rates.

Waluyanto said that Indonesia would only use the standby loans if economic growth slowed to 5.8 percent in the first quarter of 2009.

The Indonesian economy grew by 6.1 percent in the third quarter of this year.

However, the government has adjusted its 2009 growth forecast from 6.3 percent to 4.5-5.0 percent in light of the global downturn.

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