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Jakarta Post

Indonesia’s budget deficit jumps to $54.1b in October as virus-related debt piles up

  • Adrian Wail Akhlas

    The Jakarta Post

PREMIUM
Jakarta   /   Tue, November 24, 2020   /  02:24 pm
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Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati delivers remarks after the signing of a memorandum of understanding and a cooperation agreement for the coordination of the acceleration and electronification of regional government transactions at the Office of the Coordinating Economic Minister in Jakarta on Feb. 13. (Antara/M Risyal Hidayat)

Indonesia’s budget deficit has increased to Rp 764.9 trillion (US$54.11 billion) as of October, with the government borrowing a record amount to bring the economy out of recession and combat a raging coronavirus outbreak. The epidemic has eroded state revenue and spurred government spending, causing the budget deficit to equal 4.67 percent of GDP. The figure, however, remains within the government’s forecast of a record high 6.34 percent deficit. “Our fiscal policy will be directed to turn the economic rebound into a sustained and strong economic recovery,” Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said on Monday, adding that the government would continue to use the budget to ensure recovery while handling the pandemic. “We cannot separate COVID-19 cases and economic recovery as the rise in confirmed cases has an adverse impact...