Update News April 18, 2017

In The News

Tax amnesty achieves 75 percent of target: Tax office
The Jakarta Post April 17, 2017

Tanjung Pandan, Bangka Belitung,
The Directorate General of Taxation has said that it achieved 75 percent of its target in the tax amnesty that ended on March 31, in what was recorded as the biggest tax amnesty in the country's history.

As much as Rp 4.88 quadrillion ($367.22 billion) in asset value was declared during the nine-month long tax amnesty. Rp 147 trillion were repatriated assets while the government secured Rp 134.99 trillion in revenue from tariffs, according to the office's recently updated data.

While the declared assets exceeded the expectation, the repatriation and tariff revenue did not achieve its target, said tax office spokesman Hestu Yoga Saksama.

"Out of the Rp 1 quadrillion repatriation target, we hit only Rp 147 trillion, while compared to the Rp 167 trillion tariff revenue target, we got only Rp 135 trillion," Hestu said at a media briefing in Tanjung Pandan, Bangka-Belitung province, on Sunday.

Hestu added that in 2016, 1,556,000 registered taxpayers paid less than they should have. The tax office also recorded Rp 35 trillion in arrears that had been solved through the program.

In terms of registered taxpayers, the tax office recorded 52,757 new taxpayers during the tax amnesty.

The tax office also obtained the data of 56,600 taxpayers who did not pay their tax money and 722,907 taxpayers who have yet to submit their tax forms.

"Now what? We cannot use the amnesty anymore. We could use the data to ask the taxpayers to pay the tax money," he said.

The tax office’s audit and collection department marked Rp 18.5 trillion from law enforcement as of March and it would launch an investigation in May, the results of which would be obtained between August and November.

"With the tax amnesty, currently we have clear data as well as stronger evidence for investigation," Hestu said.

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Manufacturing sector remains biggest growth contributor
The Jakarta Post, 18/04/2017

The manufacturing sector remains the biggest contributor to economic growth in Indonesia, Central Statistics Agency (BPS) data show.

The sector contributed 0.92 percent to total economic growth of 5.02 percent last year. Other contributing sectors were trade with 0.53 percent, followed by construction with 0.51 percent, information and communication with 0.42 percent and others with 2.64 percent.

“The manufacturing sector is the biggest economic source,” said Industry Minister Airlangga Hartarto during a media workshop on Monday.

However, its contribution has declined in the past three years, falling from 1.01 percent in 2014 and 0.94 percent in 2015, the same data show.

The contribution of the non-oil-and-gas manufacturing sector to the gross domestic product (GDP), meanwhile, remained low at around 18 percent in 2011 to 2016, compared to 30 percent prior to the 1997-1998 crisis, indicating what experts consider ‘premature deindustrialization’ in the developing country.

Airlangga added that, if combined with wholesale and retail sales as well as motorbike and car repair work, the contribution to GDP was 31.3 percent.

The biggest GDP contributor in the manufacturing sector outside of oil and gas is food and beverages with 32.84 percent, followed by metal, computer, electronics, optical and electricity equipment with 10.71 percent, transportation equipment with 10.47 percent and chemicals, pharmaceutical products and herbs with 9.86 percent. (bbn)

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Indonesia`s Trade Surplus at USD3.92bn, Highest Since 2015
Tempo.co 18/04/2017

The Central Statistics Agency or BPS reported January to March 2017 trade surplus was at USD 3.92 billion; the highest figure since 2015.

Export value in March 2017 was recorded at US$14.59 billion or a 15.68 increase compared to the previous month and a 23.55 percent increase compared to March 2016.

Meanwhile, import value has also increased this month by 17.56 percent compared to February 2017 of US$13.36 billion.

The figure is higher 18.19 percent compared to March 2016. Export and import value in March was the highest since 2015.

 As such, Indonesia saw a trade surplus of US$1.23 billion in March 2017, driven by a surplus of US$2.02 in non-oil and gas sector.

Non-oil and gas sector export in March 2017 reached US$13.11 billion or a 14.68 percent increase compared to the previous month.

The highest increase in non-oil and gas sector was recorded by mineral fuel, whereas chemicals saw the biggest dropped.

The value of non-oil and gas import in March 2017 increased by 24.94 percent or US$11.10 billion compared to the previous month, whereas oil and gas import fell by 8.54 percent.

Raw materials/components import was the largest contributor in March 2017 at 74.32 percent worth US$9.92 billion, followed by capital goods import amounting to US$2.02 billion and consumption goods import at US$1.4 billion.

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Qatar invites Indonesia to Doha Forum
Antara News, 18/04/2017

Qatar has invited Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla to attend the Doha Forum, which will be held from May 14 to 15, 2017, to discuss global democracy and promote peace in the world.

The Qatar Ambassador to Indonesia, Ahmed Jassim Al Hammar, delivered the invitation during his visit to Kallas office in Jakarta on Monday.

According to Al Hammar, the forum will be attended by heads of states and government leaders, as well as leaders of international organizations.

The attendees will hold discussions on various sectors such as politics, economics, regional, and global issues, as well as refugee crisis.

"The main purpose of the Doha Forum is to open the widest discussion between the government and civilians about democracy and promoting peace in the world," Al Hammar added.

Additionally, the ambassador also discussed efforts to increase bilateral cooperation in sectors including economic, defense, and investment, in which the two countries are eager to intensify cooperation.

"Our talk was to seek efforts to widen and boost bilateral cooperation. Our bilateral relationship is very good," he stated.

Some investments of Qatar in Indonesia include financial services to trade sector such as Qatar National Bank, Indosat Ooredoo, and Matahari Mall that operate in Indonesia, Al Hammar added.

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Singapore apartments main target of Indonesian property investors
Antara News, 18/04/2017

Indonesian property investors would prefer to go to Singapore if they want to invest in apartments and to Australia to buy houses to be leased out, a survey has said.

Profit, better guaranteed, is the main reason for investing abroad, the survey Property Affordability Sentiment Index by Rumah.com said here on Sunday.

Country Manager of Rumah.com Wasudewan said the Indonesian investors chose to invest in Singapore on better infrastructure, stability and security that would be needed by the would be tenants.

Property Affordability Sentiment Index is an annual survey held by Rumah.com in cooperation with research center Intuit Research of Singapore. The survey involved 1,030 respondents in November-December 2016.

"Singapore has good transport access locally and internationally. For that Singapore has received an appreciation as the Best Location in Asia for expatriates and the 25th best in the world, according to a survey on Quality of Living by Mercer early this year," Wasudewan said.

The results of the surveys matched data from Cushman & Wakefield, an international property consultancy company, which said that in the first half of 2016, Indonesians bought 189 property buildings of various categories in Singapore, or a 23 percent increase compared with the same period in the previous year.

Purchases by Chinese and Malaysians declines, but purchases by Indonesians rose 19 percent in the second quarter of 2016.

According to property company Propnex Realty Pte, as quoted from PropertyGuru.com.sg, which handles the sales of luxurious condominiums OUE Twin Peaks in the Orchard Road, Singapore, the developer of the condominiums has succeeded in disposing of almost 50 percent of 86 units built in the first phase at a price of 4 million Singaporean dollar per unit and Indonesians are the main foreign buyers, Wasudewan said.

He said growing number of Indonesians buy property abroad as technology makes it easier to have information about market in other countries. Indonesians buy property abroad especially in Singapore for commercial purpose.

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Indonesia`s imports up, trade surplus
Antara News, 18/04/2017

Indonesian imports rose 17.65 percent to US$13.36 billion in March from US$8.89 billion in February this year, the Central Bureau of Statistic (BPS) said here on Monday.

BPS head Suhariyanto attributed the increase to 24.94 percent rise in the imports of commodities other than oil and gas to US$11.10 billion from US$8.86 billion in February, 2017.

Imports of oil and gas dropped US$211.2 million or 8.54 percent."Year-on-year, the imports in March also rose 18.19 percent from US$11.3 billion," Suhariyanto said.

Meanwhile, imports of oil and gas were valued at US$2.26 billion in March 2017, or down 8.54 percent from US$2.47 billion in February, 2017. Year-on-year, the Marchs imports of oil and gas rose 45.70 percent from US$1.55 billion.

Cumulatively in the first three months of 2017 imports were valued at US$36.68 billion or an increase of 14.83 percent from US$31.94 billion in the same period in 2016.

The largest imports came from China reaching US$7.75 billion, followed by Japan from which imports were valued at US$3.42 billion and Thailand from which imports were valued at US$2.15 billion.

Meanwhile the countrys exports in March rose 15.68 percent to US$14.59 billion from US$12.61 billion.The international trade in March, therefore, favored the country with a surplus of US$1.23 billion

Cumulatively in the first three months of the year, exports were valued at US$40.61 billion or up 20.84 percent from the same period in 2016.

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Bitung special economic zone to begin operations in May 2017
Antara News, 18/04/2017

The Bitung special economic zone (KEK) in North Sulawesi Province will begin operations in May this year.

The Bitung KEK administrator was ready to hand over the zone to a regional government-owned company (BUMD) for starting the operations, Jenny Karouw, head of the North Sulawesi trade office, stated here, Monday.

"When it is handed over to the BUMD, it would no longer be run by the government, but it would become a business-to-business entity," she said.

North Sulawesi Governor Olly Dondokambey remarked that the Bitung KEK was established based on Government Regulation No. 32 of 2014.

Build on a 534-hectare plot of land, the zone will house fish processing, pharmaceutical, and coconut industries.Located in a strategic area, the KEK is expected to boost the economy of North Sulawesi.

The development of the Bitung KEK is expected to attract investment worth trillions of rupiah and create several job opportunities."We are ready to meet every target outlined in the action plan for the Bitung KEK," the governor added.

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Coal, Copper, Tin Boost Exports
Tempo.co, 18/04/2017

The Central Statistics Agency (BPS) reported that Indonesia's exports in March 2017, increased by 15.68 percent to USD 14.59 billion when compared to that in the previous month at USD 12.61 billion. Compared to March 2016, the figure increased by 23.55 percent.

The increase in exports was supported by price hikes of a number of non-oil and gas commodities, including coal."We have projected that there will be commodity [price] hikes this year, although they are not aggressive. For example, we forecasted that oil and gas prices would be at somewhere between USD 55 and USD 60, and they had impacts on commodity prices," Bank Mandiri economist Andry Asmoro told Tempo on Monday, April 17, 2017.

Andry explained that based on data released by the BPS, exports in march increased and surpassed the market consensus by 23.6 percent year on year versus 11.9 percent in the previous month. Exports were supported by higher prices of commodities, such as coal, copper, and tin.

In March, coal prices soared by 70.9 percent year on year or 1.2 percent month on month, copper prices climbed by 18 percent year on year or minus 2 percent month on month, and tin prices increased by 15.5 percent year on year or 2.3 percent month on month.

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