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Jakarta Post

Indonesia's forex reserves drop $9.4b in March as BI steps up efforts to stabilize rupiah

  • Adrian Wail Akhlas

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Tue, April 7, 2020   /  12:09 pm
The Jakarta Post Image
A US dollar bill is pictured behind a protective mask, which are widely used as protective gear against COVID-19, in this illustration taken March 17. (REUTERS/Alexey Pavlishak/File Photo)

Indonesia’s foreign exchange (forex) reserves dropped US$9.4 billion in March to $121 billion as Bank Indonesia (BI) stepped up market intervention to stabilize the rupiah exchange rate amid heavy capital outflows, according to the central bank. Forex reserves have continued to decrease since February,  when they dropped from $131.7 billion in January, the second-highest level in the country’s history. March’s figure is enough to support seven months of imports and payments of the government’s short-term debts and is above the international adequacy standard of about three months of imports. BI said the decline in forex reserves in March was due to payments of the government’s external debts and market intervention to stabilize the country’s currency amid “extraordinary conditions due to panic in the global financial mar...