Indonesian president discuss worsening economy with his ministers

Indonesia’s Widodo summons his ministers as economic growth declines to its lowest level since 2009

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

Indonesian President Joko Widodo summoned his economy ministers on the weekend in order to discuss the country’s economic performance.  Recent data showed a decline in economic expansion since when he took office in October.

Indonesia, the largest economy in the south east Asia, has been slowing in growth to its lowest level since 2009, because of what an official described as “incompetent ministers and bungling bureaucrats.”

The President Widodo had pledged to boost economic growth to 7 percent on average during his five-year term, but growth is expected to reach 5.2 percent this year with a slump in commodity prices, according to the officials.

Government officials believe that reshuffling the cabinet could help the fragile situation in the country.

Jusuf Kalla, the vice president, has repeatedly said a reshuffle could take place within weeks, although the President Midodo has not commented on the matter, but a near-term reshuffle is widely expected as negative data shown on inflation.

Widodo, the first Indonesian president from outside the political or military establishment, could face pressure to include more members from his party in a new cabinet, if the economic indicators recover soon, according to critics.

The Jakarta-based Concord Consulting group said a reshuffle in the cabinet in less than a year into the Widodo’s presidency could be seen as a failure to appoint competent officials in the first place.

"There is also no guarantee that the replacements will fare any better, especially if the process of selecting new ministers is marred with political interests," the group said.

TRTWorld and agencies