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NEWS UPDATES 20 August 2009

Indonesia sees rising shipments to Japan

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Indonesia expects its exports to Japan to rise after the latter`s economy experienced positive growth of 0.9 percent in the second quarter of this year, Antara news agency quoted a minister as saying.

Trade Minister Mari Elka Pangestu said prospects of Indonesian exports to Japan would improve following the North Asian country`s economic growth.

"That is good news for our exports. Actually an improvement in exports to Japan was already seen during the past few months although contraction still occurred annually," she said after attending the presidential speech at a plenary meeting of the Regional Representatives` Council (DPD).

She said the export improvement would be better seen after the implementation of the general elections in the country.

"Japan`s latest economic growth figures would affect positively on our export growth moreover after the elections are done and economic stimulus is distributed," she said.

Japan`s economy has been depressed as a result of the world crisis so far this year. It hit the lowest in June but is now improving. Japan`s economy dropped to 11.7 percent in the first quarter this year.

According to the Central Bureau of Statistics (BPS) Indonesia`s non-oil exports to Japan have kept increasing.

From January to July 2009 they reached $5.044 billion, down a bit from $6.445 billion in the same period last year. In June the country`s exports to Japan reached $1.026 billion up from $909.9 million in the previous month.

In 2008 Indonesia’s non-oil exports to Japan reached $13.811 billion, up by around five percent from the previous year. Efforts to increase exports to new markets such as the Middle East and Eastern European countries have not yet shown results.

"Even in the past two months exports to Asian countries such as the Asean member countries, Japan, China and India have been increasing," the minister said.

She said economies in Asia had indeed grown positively and had even been predicted to come out of the crisis the most quickly. She said main export commodities such as crude palm oil, coal, textiles and garments would remain the main contributor to the improvement of the country’s export performance.

"Exports of the commodities are not slumping but still increase although not so high," she said.

The minister predicted the country’s non-oil and gas exports in 2009 would contract by 15 percent in terms of value considering the high price of commodities in 2008.

The volume however is predicted to be stable, she said adding export growth would start to be positive in terms of volume in 2010.



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