July 10, 2018 / 6:13 AM / 4 months ago

Indonesia plans economic policy moves to cope with global uncertainties

FILE PHOTO: A port worker watches as a ship leaves the New Priok Container Terminal 1 in North Jakarta, Indonesia September 13, 2016. REUTERS/Darren Whiteside/File Photo

JAKARTA (Reuters) - Indonesia will announce economic policy changes in coming months to help its industries cope with rising global uncertainty and the indirect impact of trade tensions between China and the United States, officials said.

Details about the moves, to be taken at a time Indonesia is trying to stabilize the fragile rupiah IDR= and reduce its current account deficit, have not been released.

Industry Minister Airlangga Hartarto said the government is preparing measures to improve the investment climate.

According to an official statement late on Monday, Hartarto said the government will “optimize the use of fiscal tools in the form of import and export taxes, as well as harmonizing import taxes, so that industries would have their competitive edge and are able to export.”

He said the government would also give more incentives to exports, including by subsidizing timber legality verification for small and medium furniture makers, providing them certificates for foreign buyers that ensure timber products are not sourced from illegal logging.

Companies would also be expected to reduce the use of imported materials in their production, the industry minister said.

Bank Indonesia Governor Perry Warjiyo, in an interview with Reuters on Monday, said authorities are preparing policies aimed at reducing the current account deficit.

Earlier on Monday, Warjiyo warned that rising U.S.-China tensions could hurt other economies not only through trade, but also financial channels as these could heighten investors’ risk aversion.

Reporting by Gayatri Suroyo; Editing by Richard Borsuk

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