The Jakarta Post
Coordinating Economic Minister Darmin Nasution has said that the construction of national strategic infrastructure projects may be postponed for up to six years as the government is trying to reduce the current account deficit (CAD).
The CAD, which is now at 3 percent of the gross domestic product, is believed to be contributing to rupiah depreciation against the US dollar. Depreciation reached 11 percent from January to early September.
“If we need to postpone [the projects] for up to five to six years, we will do so. It depends on the needs,” Darmin said in Jakarta on Friday as reported by kontan.co.id.
Previously, the government announced it would delay infrastructure projects to reduce imports, which were blamed for the swelling CAD. It recently postponed 15,200 megawatt (MW) electricity projects that are part of the 35,000 MW electricity program.
Darmin said the duration of postponement would be different for each project. “For example, if on the list there are 10 projects, we may construct two projects next year, another two in the following years, and so on,” he said.
He said other projects were being carefully assessed to determine whether construction for them would be postponed, but stressed that the government would not halt projects that were currently under construction.
Darmin added that the government would also continue to move forward with urgent projects. “We will announce all the postponed projects,” he said. (bbn)