Indonesia Sept trade surplus seen at $4.8 bln as exports slow

Indonesia’s trade surplus likely remained elevated in September, albeit below the level recorded in the previous month, amid a slowdown in export growth, a Reuters poll showed on Friday.

The resource-rich nation has been enjoying an export boom on the back of high commodity prices, which has boosted its economic recovery from the impacts of the pandemic.

The September trade surplus is seen at $4.84 billion, narrower than the previous month’s $5.76 billion, according to the median forecast of 12 economists.

Export growth is seen at 27.91% annually, slower than August’s 30.15%, while imports are seen up 31.48% on a yearly basis, versus 32.81% in August.

Indonesia is a major exporter of coal, palm oil, nickel, tin and other commodities. Analysts have warned moderating commodity prices, at a time when imports are rising due to an improving domestic economy, may reduce its trade surplus in the remainder of 2022.

“We saw a correction in CPO (crude palm oil) prices, even though coal prices were stable” last month, said Irman Faiz, an economist with Bank Danamon, who predicted a $4.4 billion September surplus.