Thursday November 15 2018
Indonesia Unexpectedly Raises Key Interest Rate to 6%
Bank Indonesia l Chusnul Ch Manan | chusnul@tradingeconomics.com

Bank Indonesia unexpectedly raised its 7-day reverse repurchase rate by 25 bps to 6 percent on November 15th meeting, after trade balance posted a gap in October. Policymakers said the decision to increase the tightening was consistent with efforts to reduce the current account gap to a more healthy limit of around 2.5% of GDP in 2019, anticipating a rise on global interest rates in the upcoming months, and a continued stabilizing of rupiah. The lending and the deposit facility rates were also raised by 25 bps to 6.75 percent and 5.25 percent respectively.

Excerpts from the Bank Indonesia Press Release:

The decision reflects Bank Indonesia’s ongoing efforts to lower current account deficit within a manageable threshold. The policy rate hike is also aimed at strengthening the attractiveness of domestic financial markets by anticipating global policy rate hike in the next few months. In order to maintain flexibility and distribution of liquidity in the banking industry, Bank Indonesia raised the average reserve requirement (conventional and sharia) from 2% to 3%, as well as raising the macroprudential liquidity buffer (conventional and sharia) that can be repoed to Bank Indonesia, from 2% to 4%, each from deposit. Furthermore, Bank Indonesia has decided to maintain macroprudential policy without adjusting the countercyclical capital buffer (CCyB), namely remaining at 0%, and the Macroprudential Intermediation Ratio (MIR) in the 80-92% target range. Moving forward, Bank Indonesia will optimise its policy mix to safeguard macroeconomic and financial system stability, while strengthening policy coordination with the Government and other relevant authorities to maintain economic stability and bolster external resilience, which includes reducing the current account deficit to around 2.5% of GDP in 2019. The policy mix instituted by Bank Indonesia and the Government is expected to effectively dampen the impact of global economic gyrations by leaning against the global headwinds in order to maintain domestic economic resilience.

Bank Indonesia has also introduced rules for Rupiah interest rate derivatives, namely Interest Rate Swaps (IRS) and Overnight Index Swaps (OIS), in order to expedite further financial market deepening. This will provide alternative hedging instruments against domestic interest rate fluctuations. With the publication of IndONIA and efforts to strengthen JIBOR credibility, the policy is expected to produce transparent yield curves for the money market and bond market, while also strengthening monetary policy transmission and deepening the government and corporate bond markets. Details of the rules for Rupiah interest rate derivatives is in the attached document.

The Rupiah succumbed to depreciatory pressures in the third quarter of 2018 and during October 2018 before rebounding in November 2018. Point to point, the Rupiah depreciated 3.84% in the third quarter of 2018 and by 1.98% in October 2018 as a corollary of global economic uncertainty. The Rupiah rebounded in November 2018, however, due to foreign capital inflows to the country, drawn by conducive domestic economic dynamics and financial market policy, as well as positive sentiment surrounding the midterm elections in the US. The foreign capital inflows affected all financial assets, including the stock market. As of 14th November 2018, the Rupiah had depreciated by 8.25% (ytd) this year, which is less than the depreciation experienced in Turkey, South Africa, India and Brazil. Bank Indonesia will remain vigilant of global financial market uncertainty, while continuing to stabilise Rupiah exchange rates in line with the currency’s fundamental value and maintaining market mechanisms, backed by financial market deepening efforts.

For 2018, the central bank expects the economy to grow by 5.1 percent while inflation is projected at around 3.2 percent.
 




Thursday November 15 2018
Indonesia Trade Balance Swings to Deficit in October
Statistics Indonesia l Chusnul Ch Manan | chusnul@tradingeconomics.com

Indonesia posted a trade deficit USD 1.82 billion in October 2018, swinging from a USD 1 billion surplus in the same month a year earlier, missing market consensus of a USD 0.17 billion gap. Exports went up 3.59 percent to USD 15.80 billion while imports jumped 23.66 percent to USD 17.62 billion.

Imports surged 23.66 percent from a year earlier to USD 17.62 billion in October, following a marginally revised 14.25 percent rise in the prior month and far above expectations of a 9.2 percent increase. Purchases of non-oil and gas soared 22.17 percent to USD 14.72 billion while those of oil and gas jumped by 31.78 percent to USD 2.91 billion.

Compared to the prior month, imports soared by 20.60 percent, with purchases of non-oil and gas increased sharply 19.42 percent while those of oil and gas surged by 26.97 percent. Imports went up for all categories: raw material (22.59 percent); capital goods (15.57 percent), and consumption goods (13.28 percent). Among major trading partners, imports increased from: China (11.71 percent); the US (7.10 percent); Japan (33.72 percent); Taiwan (23.72 percent); South Korea (28.56 percent); Singapore (5.41 percent); Thailand (10.47 percent); Malaysia (24.11 percent); Germany (9.16 percent); Australia (44.46 percent); the Netherlands (10.50 percent), and India (12.69 percent). On the other hand, imports decreased to Italy (-6.22 percent).

Exports increased 3.59 percent from a year earlier to USD 15.80 billion, beating market consensus of a 1.81 percent rise and after an upwardly revised 2.40 percent growth in the prior month. Sales of non-oil and gas products went up by 4.03 percent to USD 14.32 billion while those of oil and gas edged down by 0.44 percent to USD 1.48 billion. 
 
Compared to the previous month, exports rose 5.87 percent, as non-oil and gas products went up by 4.99 percent and sales oil and gas rose sharply by 15.18 percent. By categories, outbound shipments increased for: vehicles and parts (14.18 percent); jewelery (82.24 percent); footwear (28.48 percent); mineral fuel (9.71 percent); and inorganic chemicals (69.64 percent).By contrast, sales fell for: pulp (-25.75 percent); copper (-24.49 percent); tin (-40.54 percent); ore, metal crust and metal ash (-42.03 percent); and knitted goods (-9.39 percent). Sales rose to: China (12.63 percent); the US (3.24 percent); Taiwan (5.18 percent); Singapore (23.23 percent); Australia (9.01 percent); Malaysia (12.66 percent); Germany (7.74 percent), percent); India (2.17 percent); Thailand (0.86 percent); and the Netherlands (4.66 percent). Meantime, sales declined to Japan (-4.01 percent); South Korea (-15.05 percent); and Italy (-5.46 percent).
 
Considering January to October, the trade balance posted a deficit of USD 5.51 billion, compared with a surplus of USD 11.86 billion in the same period of 2017.
 





Monday November 05 2018
Indonesia GDP Annual Growth Slows to 5.17% in Q3
Statistics Indonesia | Chusnul Ch Manan | chusnul@tradingeconomics.com

Indonesia's annual economic growth eased to 5.17 percent in the third quarter of 2018 from 5.27 percent in the previous three-month period and slightly above market consensus of 5.15 percent. The expansion was mainly driven by private consumption and fixed investment while net exports contributed negatively to the GDP growth.

On the expenditure side, household consumption rose 5.01 percent in the third quarter, after a 5.14 percent increase in the previous period; and fixed-investment went up 6.96 percent, accelerating from 5.87 percent in the June quarter. In addition, government spending climbed 6.28 percent in the third quarter, compared with a 5.26 percent advance in the previous period. Meanwhile, net external demand contributed negatively to the GDP growth as imports jumped 14.06 percent (vs 15.17 percent in Q2) and exports increased at a softer 7.52 percent (vs 7.70 percent in Q2).
 
On the production side, output growth eased for: agriculture (3.62 percent vs 4.76 percent in Q2); electricity and gas (5.58 percent vs 7.56 percent); transportation (5.64 percent vs 8.59 percent); business services (8.67 percent vs 8.89 percent); and other services (9.19 percent vs 9.22 percent). Meantime, GDP increased at a faster pace for: manufacturing (4.33 percent vs 3.97 percent); construction (5.79 percent vs 5.73 percent); information and communication (8.98 percent vs 6.06 percent); financial and insurance services (3.44 percent vs 3.02 percent); real estate (3.85 percent vs 3.11 percent); public administration, defense and social security (7.89 percent vs 7.20 percent); education (6.62 percent vs 4.94 percent); mining and quarrying (2.68 percent vs 2.21 percent); water and waste management (6.22 percent vs 3.94 percent); wholesale and retail trade (5.26 percent vs 5.24 percent); accommodation & food services (5.90 percent vs 5.75 percent); and health and social services (7.55 percent vs 7.07 percent).
 
On a quarterly basis, the economy grew 3.09 percent in the three months to September, slightly above market expectations of 3.07 percent and following a 4.21 percent expansion in the previous period.
 
For 2018, the government still expects the economy to grow by 5.4 percent though officials have said the latest outlook is 5.14 percent. The central bank's 2018 forecast is between 5.1-5.2 percent.




Monday November 05 2018
Indonesia Economy Expands 3.09% in Q3
Statistics Indonesia | Rida | rida@tradingeconomics.com

Indonesia's gross domestic product grew 3.09 percent quarter-on-quarter in the three months to September 2018, slightly above market expectations of 3.07 percent and after a 4.21 percent expansion in the previous period. There was a slowdown in government spending while private consumption and fixed investment increased firmly and net external demand contributed positively to the GDP growth.

Still, the latest reading was the second straight quarter of expansion amid multiple adversities in recent months, including the earthquake and tsunami in Palu as well as floods in some regions.

On the expenditure side, government spending increased 6.36 percent in the third quarter, way softer than a 32.51 percent jump in the previous period. Meanwhile, private consumption growth picked up to 3.31 percent from 1.54 percent in the previous quarter and fixed investment expansion accelerated to 6.32 percent from 0.95 percent. Exports surged 8.68 percent (vs -0.96 percent in Q2) and imports increased at a slower 7.86 percent (vs 0.49 percent in Q2). 

On the production side, output rose at a softer pace for: agriculture, forestry and fishing (3.18 percent vs 9.92 percent in Q2); mining and quarrying (0.36 percent vs 2.48 percent); wholesale and retail trade (3.05 percent vs 3.12 percent); transportation and storage (2.41 percent vs 3.15 percent); accommodation and food service (1.57 percent vs 1.96 percent); business activities (2.41 percent vs 3.37 percent); education services (2.92 percent vs 3.24 percent); and other services (2.68 percent vs 3.29 percent). Meanwhile, output growth accelerated for: manufacturing (2.57 percent vs 2.06 percent); electricity and gas (3.38 percent vs 3.09 percent); water supply, sewerage, waste management and remediation activities (3.79 percent vs 1.61 percent); construction (4.81 percent vs 0.94 percent); information and communication (3.67 percent vs 2.01 percent); financial services and insurance (3.42 percent vs 0.68 percent); real estate (1.05 percent vs 0.92 percent); public administration (2.98 percent vs 1.53 percent); and health and social services (2.28 percent vs 1.49 percent). 

Year-on-year, the economy expanded 5.17 percent in the September quarter, easing from a 5.27 percent growth in the previous period and slightly above consensus of 5.15 percent.





Tuesday October 23 2018
Indonesia Leaves Monetary Policy Unchanged
Gabriela Costa | gabriela.costa@tradingeconomics.com

Bank Indonesia left its 7-day reverse repurchase rate unchanged at 5.75 percent on October 23rd, after two consecutive hikes and matching market expectations. Policymakers said the decision to pause the tightening was consistent with efforts to reduce the current account gap and maintain the attractiveness of the domestic financial market. The lending and the deposit facility rates were also left steady at 6.5 percent and 5 percent respectively.

Excerpts from the Bank Indonesia Press Release:

"The decision is consistent with ongoing efforts to reduce the current account deficit within a manageable threshold, while maintaining the attractiveness of domestic financial markets, thereby bolstering external resilience in Indonesia against a backdrop of persistently high global uncertainty. Bank Indonesia constantly implements a monetary operations strategy oriented towards maintaining adequate liquidity in the Rupiah market and foreign exchange market, while also effectively commencing the Domestic Non-Deliverable Forwards (DNDF) on 1st November 2018. Bank Indonesia is always strengthening policy coordination with the Government and other relevant authorities in order to maintain economic stability and reinforce external resilience, including stimulating exports and lowering imports, which will reduce the current account deficit to 2.5% of GDP projected in 2019. Moving forward, Bank Indonesia will monitor prevailing economic developments, such as the current account deficit, exchange rates, financial system stability and inflation, as follow-up measures to maintain macroeconomic and financial system stability.

The Rupiah is undergoing depreciation, albeit with contained volatility. The Rupiah depreciated in September, continuing into October 2018, in line with currencies of other peer countries. On average, the Rupiah depreciated 2.07% during September 2018, and continue to slightly depreciate in October 2018. As of 22nd October 2018, the rupiah had depreciated by 10.65% (ytd), which is not as severe as that felt in Brazil, India, South Africa and Turkey. Looking ahead, Bank Indonesia will continue to stabilise Rupiah exchange rates in line with the currency’s fundamental value, while maintaining market mechanisms, supported by financial market deepening. Such policy is focused on mitigating Rupiah volatility and sustaining adequate market liquidity, thus preventing risks to macroeconomic and financial system stability."

Inflation forecasts remain unchanged at 3.5±1 percent for 2018; but Bank Indonesia projects economic growth to be at the lower range of 5.0-5.4% (yoy), impacted by a decrease in net exports.


Monday October 15 2018
Indonesia Trade Surplus Narrows Sharply in September
Statistics Indonesia l Chusnul Ch Manan | chusnul@tradingeconomics.com

Indonesia's trade surplus narrowed sharply to USD 0.23 billion in September 2018, from a USD 1.79 billion in the same month a year earlier, missing market consensus of a USD 0.5 billion gap. Exports rose 1.7 percent to USD 14.83 billion while imports increased at a faster 14.18 percent to USD 14.60 billion.

Exports increased 1.70 percent from a year earlier to USD 14.83 billion, far below market consensus of a 7.58 percent rise and after an upwardlly revised 4.52 percent growth in the prior month. Sales of non-oil and gas products went up by 3.78 percent to USD 13.62 billion while those of oil and gas tumbled by 16.99 percent to USD 1.21 billion. 
 
Compared to the previous month, exports dropped 6.58 percent, as non-oil and gas products fell by 5.67 percent and sales oil and gas plunged by 15.81 percent. By categories, outbound shipments declined for: mechanical machines/aircraft (-11.60 percent); jewelery (-20.13 percent); footwear (-13.69 percent); electric machinery and equipment (-11.48 percent); and apparel not knitted (-17.41 percent). By contrast, sales went up for: fruit (14.38 percent); iron and steel (20.23 percent); tin (7.56 percent); ore, metal crust and metal ash (18.86 percent); and pulp (5.65 percent). Sales went down to: China (-8.66 percent); the US (-6.90 percent); Japan (-10.11 percent); Taiwan (-23.43 percent); Singapore (-16.90 percent); Australia (-8.37 percent); Malaysia (-11.84 percent); Germany (-12.19 percent), and the Netherlands (-9.54 percent). Meantime, sales rose to South Korea (13.33 percent); India (3.30 percent); Thailand (0.48 percent); and Italy (6.46 percent).
 
Imports went up at a faster 14.18 percent from a year earlier to USD 14.60 billion in September, following a downwardlly revised 24.49 percent rise in the prior month and far below expectations of a 24.76 percent increase. Purchases of non-oil and gas rose 13.54 percent to USD 12.32 billion while those of oil and gas increased by 17.75 percent to USD 2.28 billion.

Compared to the prior month, imports tumbled by 13.18 percent, with purchases of non-oil and gas slumping 10.52 percent while those of oil and gas plunged by 25.20 percent. Imports went down for all categories: raw material (-13.53 percent); capital goods (-10.45 percent), and consumption goods (-14.97 percent). Among major trading partners, imports declined from: China (-6.42 percent); the US (-1.38 percent); Japan (-13.70 percent); Taiwan (-8.98 percent); South Korea (-9.95 percent); Singapore (-13.31 percent); Thailand (-2.99 percent); Malaysia (-3.10 percent); Germany (-25.07 percent); Australia (-31.64 percent), and India (-15.63 percent). On the other hand, imports rose to Italy (3.44 percent); and the Netherlands (24.45 percent).  

Considering January to September, the trade balance posted a deficit of USD 3.78 billion, compared with a surplus of USD 10.86 billion in the same period of 2017.
 
 


Tuesday October 02 2018
Indonesia Hikes Key Rate by 25 Bps in Expected Move
Bank Indonesia | Gabriela Costa | gabriela.costa@tradingeconomics.com

Bank Indonesia raised its 7-day reverse repurchase rate by 25 bps to 5.75 percent on September 27th, matching expectations. It was the fifth hike in six meetings, in an attempt to support the country's falling currency. The rupiah already weakened nearly 10 percent against the USD since the beginning of the year, reaching its lowest since 1998, amid a higher than expected current account deficit and a continued strengthening of the dollar. The deposit and lending facility rates were also increased by 25 bps to 5 percent and 6.5 percent respectively.

Excerpts from the Bank Indonesia Press Release:

“The decision is consistent with ongoing efforts to lower the current account deficit within a manageable threshold while maintaining the attractiveness of the domestic financial markets, thus further strengthens Indonesia’s external resilience despite widespread global uncertainty. The Government’s seriousness and concrete measures, with Bank Indonesia, to stimulate exports and reduce imports is expected to lower the current account deficit, specifically in 2019, to around 2.5% of GDP. Furthermore, Bank Indonesia will continue to strengthen coordination with the Government and other relevant authorities to maintain economic stability and bolster external resilience. Moving forward, Bank Indonesia will monitor prevailing economic developments, such as the current account deficit, exchange rates, financial system stability and inflation, as follow-up measures to maintain macroeconomic and financial system stability.

The Rupiah has continued to lean against depreciatory pressures, while mitigating volatility. Rupiah depreciation is in line with the currencies of peer countries, spurred by broad US dollar appreciation. Therefore, the Rupiah depreciated by an average of 1.05% in August 2018 but defied pressures in September to close at a level of Rp14,905/USD on 26th September 2018. Year-to-date (ytd), therefore, the Rupiah has lost 8.97% in value against the US dollar as of 26th September 2018, faring better, however, than the Indian rupee, South African rand, Brazilian real and Turkish lira. Moving forward, Bank Indonesia will continue to implement exchange rate stabilisation measures in line with the currency’s fundamental value, while maintaining market mechanisms and financial market deepening efforts. Such policy is aimed to contain Rupiah volatility and liquidity adequacy in the market, to prevent risks on macroeconomic stability and financial system.”

Inflation forecasts remain unchanged at 3.5±1 percent for 2018; and Bank Indonesia projects economic growth in the 5.0-5.4% (yoy) range, subsequently accelerating to 5.1-5.5% (yoy) in 2019.


Monday September 17 2018
Indonesia Trade Balance Swings to Deficit in August
Statistics Indonesia l Chusnul Ch Manan| chusnul@tradingeconomics.com

Indonesia posted a trade deficit USD 1.02 billion in August 2018, swinging from a USD 1.68 billion surplus in the same month a year earlier, compared to market consensus of a USD 0.68 billion gap. It was the second straight month trade gap, mainly due to a surge in imports.

Imports surged 24.65 percent from a year earlier to USD 16.84 billion in August, following a marginally revised 31.73 percent rise in the prior month and below expectations of a 26.53 percent increase. Purchases of non-oil and gas rose 19.97 percent to USD 13.79 billion while those of oil and gas surged by 51.43 percent to USD 3.05 billion.

Compared to the prior month, imports tumbled by 7.97 percent, with purchases of non-oil and gas slumping 11.79 percent while those of oil and gas increasing by 14.50 percent. Imports went down for all categories: raw material (-7.60 percent); capital goods (-8.98 percent), and consumption goods (-9.19 percent). Among major trading partners, imports declined from: China (-7.39 percent); the US (-23.58 percent); Japan (-15.94 percent); Taiwan (-16.39 percent); South Korea (-15.27 percent); Singapore (-10.34 percent); Thailand (-5.89 percent); Malaysia (-18.61 percent); Germany (-16.80 percent); Italy (-32.50 percent); and the Netherlands (-49.40 percent). By contrast, imports rose to Australia (2.61 percent), and India (4.69 percent).

Exports increased at a softer 4.15 percent from a year earlier to USD 15.82 billion, far below market consensus of a 10.03 percent rise and after a marginally revised 19.68 percent growth in the prior month. Sales of non-oil and gas products went up by 3.43 percent to USD 14.43 billion while those of oil and gas increased by 12.24 percent to USD 1.38 billion. 
 
Compared to the previous month, exports fell 2.90 percent, as non-oil and gas products dropped by 2.86 percent and sales oil and gas declined by 3.27 percent. By categories, outbound shipments decreased for: rubber and rubber goods (-776 percent); mineral fuel (-16.25 percent); various chemical products (-7.53 percent); ore, metal crust and metal ash (-11.71 percent); and paper/carton (-9.23 percent). In contrast, sales went up for: electric machinery and equipment (3.47 percent); animal fats and oils (3.47 percent); iron and steel (6.20 percent); tin (20.94 percent), and knitted goods (5.59 percent). Sales went down to: China (-3.81 percent); Japan (-6.82 percent); South Korea (-10.29 percent); India (-0.61 percent); Thailand (-10.24 percent); Taiwan (-6 percent); Singapore (-9.42 percent); and Italy (-5.76 percent). By contrast, sales rose to the US (2.36 percent); Australia (3.73 percent); Malaysia (7.33 percent); Germany (4.02 percent), and the Netherlands (6.65 percent).

Considering January to August, the trade balance posted a deficit of USD 4.09 billion, compared with a surplus of USD 9.07 billion in the same period of 2017.
 
 


Wednesday August 15 2018
Indonesia Hikes Key Interest Rate to 5.5%
Bank Indonesia | Joana Ferreira | joana.ferreira@tradingeconomics.com

Bank Indonesia raised its 7-day reverse repurchase rate by 25 bps to 5.50 percent on August 15th, the fourth hike in less than three months, in an attempt to support the country's falling currency. The decision came after the rupiah weakened to its lowest since October 2015 on the back of Turkey's currency crisis. The deposit and lending facility rates were also increased by 25 bps to 4.75 percent and 6.25 percent respectively.

Excerpts from the Bank Indonesia Press Release:

Multispeed global economic growth has continued to stoke global economic uncertainty. The US economy continues to gain momentum on the back of accelerating consumption and investment. Meanwhile, the economies of Europe, Japan and China are moderating. Consequently, the Federal Reserve is expected to continue raising the Federal Funds Rate (FFR) gradually, contrasting the reluctance of the ECB and BoJ to hikes policy rates. In addition to the recent FFR hikes, widespread global uncertainty has been exacerbated by simmering trade tensions between the US and several other countries, which have triggered retaliatory actions around the world, including currency depreciation despite broad US appreciation. Global uncertainty has also been fuelled by the risk of spillovers from the economic shocks in Turkey caused by domestic economic fragilities and the adverse impact of negative sentiment surrounding the authorities’ policies, as well as looming tensions with the US. Bank Indonesia will remain vigilant of the external risks, including potential spillover from Turkey although sound economic fundamentals in Indonesia are indicative of solid national economic resilience, coupled with avowed policy commitment.

The national economy has accelerated significantly on strong domestic demand fuelled by private and government consumption.  GDP growth was recorded at 5.27% (yoy) in the second quarter of 2018, the fastest rate since 2013. Meanwhile, household consumption stood at 5.14% (yoy), bolstered by rising incomes, upbeat consumers and controlled inflation. In addition, consumption associated with the local elections also posted solid growth. Meanwhile, government spending has also improved, thereby catalysing strong domestic demand. On the other hand, solid investment growth has been maintained despite fewer total work days in June 2018 that restrained growth slightly. Growing domestic demand has prompted a surge of imports against comparatively subdued export performance. Looking forward, Bank Indonesia predicts solid economic growth on sound investment and consumption performance despite limited export gains. Building and nonbuilding investment remain strong, backed by infrastructure development and investment in the manufacturing industry. Meanwhile, several upcoming events, including the general election, are expected to maintain consumption. Consequently, Bank Indonesia projects economic growth in 2018 in the 5.0-5.4% (yoy) range, subsequently accelerating to 5.1-5.5% (yoy) in 2019.


Wednesday August 15 2018
Indonesia Posts Largest Trade Deficit in 5 Years
Statistics Indonesia | Chusnul Ch Manan | chusnul@tradingeconomics.com

Indonesia's trade deficit widened sharply to USD 2.03 billion in July 2018 from USD 0.3 billion in the same month a year earlier, and well above market consensus of a USD 0.6 billion gap. It was the largest trade deficit since July 2013, as imports jumped to a record high.

Imports surged 31.56 percent from a year earlier to an all-time high of USD 18.27 billion in July, following a marginally revised 12.77 percent rise in the prior month and far above expectations of a 14.1 percent increase. Purchases of non-oil and gas jumped 29.28 percent to USD 15.66 billion and those of oil and gas surged by 47.09 percent to USD 2.62 billion.

Compared to the prior month, imports rose sharply by 62.17 percent, whith purchases of non-oil and gas surging 71.54 percent and those of oil and gas increasing by 22.20 percent. Imports went up for all categories: raw material (59.28 percent); capital goods (71.95 percent), and consumption goods (70.50 percent). Among major trading partners, imports rose from: China (93.44 percent); Australia (53.94 percent); Taiwan (99.21 percent); South Korea (62.92 percent); Singapore (31.18 percent); Thailand (33.17 percent); Japan (75.79 percent); Malaysia (108.01 percent); India (47.15 percent); the US (67 percent); Germany (84.72 percent); Italy (92.23 percent); and the Netherlands (8.56 percent).

Exports increased at a softer 19.33 percent from a year earlier to USD 16.24 billion, beating market consensus of a 11.35 percent rise and after a downwardly revised 11.26 percent growth in the prior month. Sales of non-oil and gas products went up by 19.03 percent to USD 14.81 billion, while those of oil and gas jumped by 22.59 percent to USD 1.43 billion. 
 
Compared to the previous month, exports surged 25.19 percent, as non-oil and gas products jumped by 31.18 percent while sales oil and gas slumped by 15.06 percent. By categories, outbound shipments increased for: electric machinery/equipment (37.23 percent); vehicles and parts (67.50 percent); rubber and rubber goods (51.47 percent); mineral fuel (11.90 percent); and animal/vegetable fats and oils (17.91 percent). In contrast, sales decreased for:  air plane and parts (-58.05 percent); fertilizer (-23.92 percent); ore, metal crust and metal ash (-15.99 percent); ships (-58.97 percent); and wheat (-21.65 percent). Exports went up to: China (6.87 percent); Thailand (45.33 percent); Japan (29.46 percent); Taiwan (90.23 percent); Singapore (37.28 percent); Australia (44.10 percent); Malaysia (29.73 percent); South Korea (34.55 percent); India (34.20 percent); the US (37.96 percent); Germany (54.56 percent); the Netherlands (33.17 percent); and Italy (4.29 percent).

Considering January to July, the trade balance posted a deficit of USD 3.09 billion, compared with a surplus of USD 7.39 billion in the same period of 2017.