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November 12, 2008

Indonesia sees 8% growth next year
Indonesian government is optimistic that national economic growth will reach 8 percent in 2009 and remain at this level until 2011, national news agency Antara quoted Vice President Jusuf Kalla as saying.

"We believe that if nothing adverse happens, economic growth next year will reach 8 percent and remain at this level until 2011," the vice president said in his keynote speech at a UNDP meeting in Jakarta Tuesday.

The vice president said an economic growth rate of 8 percent could be achieved with hard work and the development of a system that could reduce fuel oil subsidies.

"Some 30 percent of the state budget is used to subsidize fuel oil consumption at home.

"Therefore, if we are able to develop a system and technology for development of vegetable oil that could reduce dependence on fossil fuels, the subsidies can be cut," he said.

The vice president expressed hope that the United States and Europe would be able to overcome their financial crisis, so that businesses in the two areas would regain their growth and Indonesia could boost its exports to the two regions.

"The current global financial crisis has affected 50 percent of industries in the country because of the drop in demand for Indonesian goods in the United States and Europe.

"Therefore, we hope that European countries and the United States will soon be freed from the crisis," Kalla said.

According to the vice president, Indonesia's economic growth had improved from year to year so that it reached 6.4 percent after the 1998 crisis.

"After 10 years of crisis, we were able to get out of the crisis and improve our economic growth so that it reached 6.4 percent. This is good for us," he added.

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