Indonesia's central bank kept its benchmark interest rate on hold at 4.75 percent at its February 16th meeting, as expected. Policymakers said the decision was in line with efforts to supports economic growth. Bank Indonesia also left its overnight deposit facility rate and lending facility rate unchanged at 4.0 percent and 5.5 percent respectively.
Excerpts from Bank Indonesia Press Release:
The decision is consistent with Bank Indonesia’s efforts to maintain macroeconomic and financial system stability, while preserving domestic economic recovery momentum. Congruent with the global economic improvements, stronger economic growth in Indonesia is expected, with maintained macroeconomic and financial system stability at home. Nevertheless, Bank Indonesia shall remain vigilant of global risks in the form of US policy direction and geopolitical risks in Europe, as well as domestic risks linked to the impact of administered prices (AP) on inflation. To that end, Bank Indonesia will constantly seek to optimise its monetary, macroprudential and payment system policy mix in order to maintain macroeconomic and financial system stability. Furthermore, Bank Indonesia will also strengthen policy coordination with the Government, focusing on controlling inflation within the target corridor as well as ongoing structural reforms to support sustainable economic expansion.
Bank Indonesia projects economic growth in 2017 at 5.0-5.4% (yoy), on the back of strong private consumption, increase in government consumption, and improvements in both private and government investments. Export growth is expected to increase, coupled with increasing imports due to domestic demand.
After suffering in the fourth quarter of 2016, the rupiah relatively stabilized with a tendency to strenghten amid uncertainty regarding policy direction in the United States. In the fourth quarter of 2016, point-to-point, the rupiah depreciated 3.13% (ptp) to a level of Rp13,473 per USD. Bank Indonesia will continue to monitor global financial uncertainty, while instituting measures to stabilise the rupiah in line with the currency’s fundamental value and maintaining market mechanisms.
Inflation remained under control, despite the slight bump recorded at the beginning of 2017. Administered prices (AP) and core inflation pushed CPI inflation to 0.97% (mtm) in January 2017, accelerating from 0.42% (mtm) the month earlier. Meanwhile, inflationary pressures on volatile foods (VF) were controlled and low, along with various food price corrections. The government raised administered prices (AP) through higher administration price to extend vehicle registrations as well as more expensive electricity rates and special fuel prices. Core inflation was controlled at 0.56% (mtm) or 3.35% (yoy) despite a moderate increase. Bank Indonesia will continue to strenghten coordination with the government to control inflation, specifically in the face of several risks stemming from administered prices, as the government reforms energy subsidies, as well as the risk of rising volatile food prices. With these steps, Bank Indonesia predicts inflation within the target corridor for 2017, namely 4±1%.
2/16/2017 12:35:22 PM