National

President: stimulus to
be disbursed next month

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said Saturday that the government plans to disburse April a Rp 73 trillion (arounf US$6 billion) stimulus package, which was approved by the House of Representatives in February.

Yudhoyono said that he had to summon several key ministers to immediately disburse the funds.

“I told them let's not be late, it has to be disbursed in April,” he said during the launching ceremony of the new Adi Soemarmo International Airport in Central Java, as quoted by state new agency Antara.

The president said that of the Rp 73 trillion, Rp 6.6 trillion will be used for irrigation and flood prevention projects, Rp 2.19 trillion  for airport, seaport and railway projects, Rp 500 billion for electricity transmission and distribution projects, Rp 400 billion for low-cost apartment towers projects and Rp 650 billion for agriculture proejcts.

In addition, Rp 100 billion will be given for traditional market projects, Rp 355 billion will be given for logistic warehouse projects, Rp 300 billion will be given for training centers for work skills projects, Rp 150 billion will be given to subsidize hospitals and Rp 365 billion will be given to subsidize branded generic drugs.

The president added that Rp 12.2 trillion will also be distributed to several ministries to maintain their facilities.

The stimulus package is crucial for attaining 4.5 percent economic growth as the worsening global economy derails imports and investment.

In the fourth quarter last year the economy plunged 5.2 percent compared to the same quarter in 2007, although still managed to post a full-year growth of 6.1 percent, according to the Central Statistics Agency. (dre)

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