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May 11, 2008

First quarter growth up 6

Indonesia's gross domestic product (GDP) probably grew more than 6 percent in the first quarter from a year ago due to robust domestic consumption and exports, Reuters reported quoting an outlook poll.

On an annual basis, first-quarter GDP growth is seen at 6.11 percent to 6.46 percent. Compared to the fourth quarter, GDP probably grew 1.7 percent to 2.32 percent.

But the pace of growth is expected to slow in the succeeding three quarters due to rising inflation and interest rates and slowing external demand for Indonesian exports.

Consumer spending will also decline if the government hikes the prices of non-subsidised fuel. In the first quarter of 2007, GDP grew at an annual 6.1 percent, while in the fourth quarter the economy grew 6.25 percent.

The Central Bureau of Statistics is tentatively scheduled to announce the GDP data on May 15. Data from the statistics bureau also showed that exports in the first quarter rose 31.4 percent from a yea earlier to $33.62 billion, with oil and gas exports surging 62 percent to $7.38 billion.

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