Bank Indonesia Pauses BI Rate at 5.75%


Indonesia’s central bank, Bank Indonesia, held the BI rate unchanged at 5.75%.  The Bank said: “To control short-term temporary inflation pressure, the policy will be focused on strengthening monetary operation and managing short term excess liquidity. Besides strengthening policy coordination with the government at national level as well as at regional level through TPI and TPID forums. Although there is a tendency of inflation to go beyond the target due to temporary impact of government policy on fuel subsidy, with various policy implemented by Bank Indonesia and the coordination with the government, Bank Indonesia is confident that inflation in 2013 will return to its range of 4.5% ±1%.”

The Bank cut the rate by 25 basis points at its previous meeting, and cut the interest rate by 50 basis points at its November 2011 meeting, and also cut the key monetary policy rate (the BI Rate) by 25 basis points to 6.50% at its October meeting.  Previously the Bank raised the BI rate by 25 basis points to 6.75% in February 2011.  Indonesia reported annual inflation of 3.56% in February, compared to 3.7% in January, 4.1% in November, 4.61% in September, 4.79% in August and July, 4.61% in June, 5.98% in May, 6.16% in April, and 6.65% in March, and just below the inflation target of 5% +/-1% in 2011 (which changes to 4.5% +/-1% in 2012).  

Bank Indonesia has previously forecast GDP growth of 6.3-6.8% in 2011 and 6.4-6.9% in 2012 for the Indonesian economy, meanwhile Indonesia reported annual GDP growth of 6.5% in the June quarter last year. The Indonesian Rupiah (IDR) has weakened by about 5% against the US dollar over the past year, while the USDIDR exchange rate last traded around 9,135.  Bank Indonesia next meets on the 12th of April this year.

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