The Jakarta Post
Indonesia’s foreign debt grew 7.4 percent year-on-year (yoy) in May to US$ 386.1 billion, a slowdown from the 8.8 percent yoy growth recorded in April, according to Bank Indonesia (BI).
The government and BI accounted for $189.3 billion of the debt, while the private sectors and state-owned companies (SOE) were responsible for $196.9 billion, the central bank announced on Monday.
“The external debt increase in May was mainly triggered by the need for debt payments and the rupiah’s depreciation against the US dollar,” BI said in a statement as reported by Antara.
Meanwhile, the government’s external debt up to the end of May was at $186.3 billion or a 3.9 percent yoy increase, compared to 3.4 percent yoy in the previous month, particularly triggered by the issuance of the government’s global bonds.
However, government debt in May was lower than in April, which was recorded at $186.7 billion, thanks to debt payments worth S$500 million ($368.57 million) and the release of sovereign bond papers (SBN) by foreign residents valued at $1.5 billion.
The drop of foreign investor ownership in SBNs was affected by rising uncertainty in the global financial market amid escalating tensions in international trade.
BI said the government prioritized foreign debt management, most of which was used in the productive sector to help the economy grow and for people’s welfare, such as health care and social services.
According to the central bank, BI and government’s foreign debts remain at a healthy level or at 36.1 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), far from the limit of 60 percent stated in the state budget.
Most of the debts, or 87.3 percent, are long term. (asp/bbn)