IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Survey of recent developments


  • Mark Baird
  • Maria Monica Wihardja


Sri Mulyani's resignation as finance minister in May disturbed markets and aroused concern about the government's commitment to reform. This concern was partly alleviated by the appointment of two well-respected individuals as finance minister and deputy finance minister. Further progress with reform will depend heavily on this new team and other key officials. Strong presidential support will also be needed to resist attempts by parliament to interfere excessively with the finance ministry's work. The economy continued its steady recovery from the impact of the global financial crisis (GFC), but the recovery could still be jeopardised if sovereign debt concerns in Europe persist and block the rebound in global trade and commodity prices. Inflation continues to accelerate, suggesting little room for complacency on monetary policy. Fiscal policy, on the other hand, remains conservative. The higher deficit in the revised 2010 budget is not excessive, and is unlikely to be realised in any case. The real budget challenge is to spend budgeted amounts fully and well. The new five-year plan is also conservative and does little to clarify spending priorities, including for the president's 'connectivity' agenda. Despite the GFC, poverty continued to decline, thanks largely to the uninterrupted expansion of GDP and to cash transfers to the poor. Unemployment also continued to fall, although particular groups suffered slight increases in unemployment (young workers 15-25 years old) and somewhat larger reductions in working hours (urban, non-poor, and male-headed households). Nevertheless the large and sustained deceleration of manufacturing growth and the closely related dramatic shift of employment from the formal to the informal sector provide cause for concern. Distortionary labour market policies may help to explain both. A new mining law significantly alters the legal environment for firms in this industry, and also introduces long discredited policies intended to 'increase value added' by requiring the domestic processing of minerals. A new law on local government taxes attempts to reduce uncertainty for citizens and investors, but the nature of overall spending by local governments is of much greater importance for the investment climate. The central government has recently been seeking to restore the role of the 'missing intermediate' level of government and to boost the centre's indirect control over local governments through provincial governments and governors. This strategy is unlikely to succeed, but it highlights the conflicting requirements for provincial governors to act as agents of the central government while also being accountable to their provincial electorates.

Suggested Citation

  • Mark Baird & Maria Monica Wihardja, 2010. "Survey of recent developments," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(2), pages 143-170.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:bindes:v:46:y:2010:i:2:p:143-170 DOI: 10.1080/00074918.2010.486107

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Takahiro Akita, 2002. "Income Inequality in Indonesia," Working Papers EMS_2002_02, Research Institute, International University of Japan.
    2. Jian, Tianlun & Sachs, Jeffrey D. & Warner, Andrew M., 1996. "Trends in regional inequality in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 1-21.
    3. Robert J. Barro & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 1991. "Convergence across States and Regions," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 22(1), pages 107-182.
    4. J.Peter Neary, 2001. "Of Hype and Hyperbolas: Introducing the New Economic Geography," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(2), pages 536-561, June.
    5. Alberto Alesina & Reza Baqir & William Easterly, 1999. "Public Goods and Ethnic Divisions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(4), pages 1243-1284.
    6. Takahiro Akita, 2002. "Regional Income Inequality In Indonesia And The Initial Impact Of The Economic Crisis," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(2), pages 201-222.
    7. Sergio Rey & Brett Montouri, 1999. "US Regional Income Convergence: A Spatial Econometric Perspective," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(2), pages 143-156.
    8. Jorge Garcia Garcia & Lana Soelistianingsih, 1998. "Why Do Differences in Provincial Incomes Persist in Indonesia?," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(1), pages 95-120.
    9. Arsenio Balisacan & Ernesto Pernia & Abuzar Asra, 2003. "Revisiting growth and poverty reduction in Indonesia: what do subnational data show?," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(3), pages 329-351.
    10. Balisacan, Arsenio M. & Fuwa, Nobuhiko, 2004. "Going beyond Crosscountry Averages: Growth, Inequality and Poverty Reduction in the Philippines," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 32(11), pages 1891-1907, November.
    11. Shankar, Raja & Shah, Anwar, 2003. "Bridging the Economic Divide Within Countries: A Scorecard on the Performance of Regional Policies in Reducing Regional Income Disparities," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(8), pages 1421-1441, August.
    12. Barro, Robert J & Sala-i-Martin, Xavier, 1992. "Convergence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(2), pages 223-251, April.
    13. Sachs, Jeffrey D. & Warner, Andrew M., 2001. "The curse of natural resources," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 827-838, May.
    14. Lucky Sondakh & Gavin Jones, 2003. "An economic survey of northern Sulawesi: turning weaknesses into strengths under regional autonomy," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(3), pages 273-302.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Girik Allo, Albertus & Sukartini, Ni Made & Widodo, Tri, 2017. "Dynamic Changes in Comparative Advantage of Indonesian Agricultural Products," MPRA Paper 80028, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:taf:bindes:v:46:y:2010:i:2:p:143-170. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Chris Longhurst). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.