ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Indonesia looks at economic scenarios
An economic committee advised President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono last week on strategies for weathering the unfolding financial crisis in the United States, Europe and Japan.
“Basically, the crisis management strategies submitted to the President were based on two scenarios,” Indonesia Economic Committee (KEN) chairman Chairul Tanjung said last week.
KEN called for crisis management during times of better economic conditions, Chairul said, but declined to provide details of the strategy the committee prescribed for dealing with worsening conditions.
The independent economic group was set up in 2010 by the president and consists of 24 members who provide assistance on economic policies.
Chairul is a majority stakeholder in Carrefour Indonesia and the biggest shareholder in Trans Corporation, a media company.
KEN member Aviliani said the recommendations involved early warning systems, so that the president could take necessary preventative action.
“We are not the executors of the strategy,” she said. “The president will digest it further with his ministers and make decisions.”
She said that to cope with the global crisis that has hit the United States, Europe and Japan — some of the biggest importers of Indonesian goods — Indonesia needed to diversify its exports.
“The economy is also determined by psychological effects,” said Aviliani, an economist at the Institute for Development of Economics and Finance.
“If people thought that the economy was going bad, they would stop consumption and would hesitate to invest.”
Indonesia’s biggest export destination was Japan ($8.97 billion), followed by China ($8.95 billion) and the United States ($7.95 billion).
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