The Jakarta Post
The Indonesian government paid Rp 22.99 trillion (US$1.64 billion) of its debt interest that was due in January, or 8.33 percent of the debt interest payment target it set in the 2019 state budget.
The figure marked a 2.22 year-on-year (yoy) decrease in the country's debt interest payment. In January last year, the government paid 9.86 percent of the yearly debt interest payment target.
The Finance Ministry's financing and risk management director general Luky Alfirman said the decrease in debt interest payment growth was caused by a smaller debt interest due in January this year compared to the same period last year, adding that some of the debt interest due January this year had been paid earlier in 2018.
"The due dates of the debt interest payments are not distributed evenly each month throughout the year. It depends on when the loans were disbursed," Luky told kontan.co.id in a recent interview.
Luky also attributed the decrease to the strengthening of the rupiah against the United States dollar after the US Federal Reserve decided to set its rates between 2.25 and 2.5 percent.
According to Bank Indonesia (BI), the country recorded a total foreign debt of US$376.8 billion as of December 2018, up 6.9 percent year-on-year (yoy).
The central bank said the level of foreign debt remained healthy, considering 86.3 percent of the debt is long term in nature with maturity periods of more than one year.
Indonesia’s debt-to-gross domestic product was recorded at 36 percent by the end of 2018, a level considered within the range of peer countries according to BI. (ars/dmr)