Indonesia: Merchandise exports accelerate in August
Merchandise exports shot up 64.1% over the same month last year in August, following July’s 29.4% jump. August’s outturn marked the most robust growth . Meanwhile, merchandise imports jumped 55.3% over the same month last year in August (July: +44.4% yoy).
As a result, the merchandise trade balance improved from the previous month, recording a USD 4.7 billion surplus in August (July 2021: USD 2.6 billion surplus; August 2020: USD 2.3 billion surplus). Lastly, the trend pointed up, with the 12-month trailing merchandise trade balance recording a USD 29.8 billion surplus in August, compared to the USD 27.4 billion surplus in July.
Commenting on the release, Nicholas Mapa, senior economist at ING, stated:
“The sizable trade surplus will likely provide support to the Indonesian rupiah and may just be enough to push the entire current account balance back into surplus for August. The strong showing for the exports sector was likely driven by rising commodity prices, helping exports to post the highest level on record. Should commodity prices remain elevated in the coming months, exports could sustain their solid expansion to help keep the trade surplus at these elevated levels. Bank Indonesia has recently signalled that policy rates would be on hold for at least the balance of the year and IDR may need to derive support from the export sector for the time being.”