Adrian Wail Akhlas, Jakarta – Indonesia booked a smaller trade deficit in December as exports of non-oil and gas products picked up while imports fell, Statistics Indonesia (BPS) announced on Wednesday.
A US$30 million trade deficit was recorded in December, a stark contrast to the $1.33 billion deficit recorded in November, which was the highest in seven months, according to BPS data.
Imports fell must faster than the slight increase in exports seen in December. Exports totaled $14.47 billion in December, an increase of 1.28 percent year-on-year (yoy), while total imports were $14.5 billion, a decrease of 5.62 percent yoy.
"We recorded an increase in agricultural and manufacturing exports while imports of raw materials and capital goods fell compared to December of last year," BPS chairman Suhariyanto said during a press briefing in Jakarta on Wednesday.
An increase in prices of several commodities including palm oil had boosted the county's exports in December, he added.
Indonesia's non-oil and gas exports rose 5.78 percent yoy in December, but oil and gas shipments slumped 31.93 percent.
Meanwhile, imports of non-oil and gas products including agriculture and manufacturing goods fell 7.28 percent yoy despite an increase in shipments of oil and gas products by 5.33 percent.
In 2019, Indonesia recorded exports worth a total of $167.53 billion and imports worth a total of $170.72 billion, making Indonesia's trade deficit $3.2 billion last year – much lower than the $8.7 billion deficit recorded in 2018.