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Indonesia's Debt-for-Development Swaps: Past, Present, and Future

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  • Danny Cassimon
  • Dennis Essers
  • Achmad Fauzi

Abstract

This article systematically reviews recent debt-for-development swaps in Indonesia, the only debtor country where the number of such swaps warrants their being considered as a deliberate government debt-relief policy and development finance strategy. We show that the 11 swaps Indonesia has signed with its bilateral creditors since 2002 have performed rather erratically across four criteria: an increase in resources at the debtor country or government budget level or both; an increase in resources for intended sector purposes; whether, taken together, these swaps ease debt burdens; and the extent of their alignment with government policy and systems. We find little evidence of learning on the Indonesian side. We believe that Indonesia can take a more proactive stance in negotiating the economic terms underlying its debt swaps, and we suggest concrete ways for it to do so.

Suggested Citation

  • Danny Cassimon & Dennis Essers & Achmad Fauzi, 2014. "Indonesia's Debt-for-Development Swaps: Past, Present, and Future," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 50(1), pages 75-100, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:bindes:v:50:y:2014:i:1:p:75-100
    DOI: 10.1080/00074918.2014.896238
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Pesenti, Paolo & Roubini, Nouriel, 1999. "What caused the Asian currency and financial crisis?," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 305-373, October.
    2. Cassimon, Danny & Essers, Dennis & Renard, Robrecht, 2009. "An assessment of debt-for-education swaps. Case studies on swap initiatives between Germany and Indonesia and between Spain and El Salvador," IOB Working Papers 2009.03, Universiteit Antwerpen, Institute of Development Policy (IOB).
    3. Jeremy Bulow & Kenneth Rogoff, 1991. "Sovereign Debt Repurchases: No Cure for Overhang," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(4), pages 1219-1235.
    4. Nicolas Depetris Chauvin & Aart Kraay, 2005. "What Has 100 Billion Dollars Worth of Debt Relief Done for Low- Income Countries?," International Finance 0510001, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Jeremy Bulow & Kenneth Rogoff, 1988. "The Buyback Boondoggle," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(2), pages 675-704.
    6. Ross McLeod, 2004. "Dealing with bank system failure: Indonesia, 1997-2003," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(1), pages 95-116.
    7. Tito Cordella & Luca A Ricci & Marta Ruiz-Arranz, 2005. "Debt Overhang or Debt Irrelevance? Revisiting the Debt-Growth Link," IMF Working Papers 05/223, International Monetary Fund.
    8. Cizauskas, Albert C., 1979. "International debt renegotiation: Lessons from the past," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 7(2), pages 199-210, February.
    9. Cassimon, Danny & Essers, Dennis, 2013. "A chameleon called debt relief," IOB Working Papers 2013.01, Universiteit Antwerpen, Institute of Development Policy (IOB).
    10. Cassimon, Danny & Prowse, Martin & Essers, Dennis, 2009. "The pitfalls and potential of debt-for-nature swaps: a US-Indonesian case study," IOB Working Papers 2009.07, Universiteit Antwerpen, Institute of Development Policy (IOB).
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H63 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Debt; Debt Management; Sovereign Debt
    • F34 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Lending and Debt Problems
    • F35 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Aid

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