March 18, 2020 / 8:35 AM / 15 days ago

Indonesia Q1 GDP growth seen slowing to 4.5%-4.9% amid virus outbreak

JAKARTA, March 18 (Reuters) - Indonesia’s economic growth in the first quarter probably slowed to 4.5%-4.9% and strong pressure was expected in the second quarter amid the coronavirus outbreak, the country’s Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said on Wednesday.

It was difficult to make an assessment for the whole of 2020, but the government would reallocate spending to support healthcare, including to increase capacity of hospitals, she said. Last year’s growth rate was 5.02%.

The government maintained its latest 2020 budget deficit outlook at 2.5% of GDP, which was already wider than its initial plan for 1.8%, but the government would reduce its planned bond issuance size by closing the deficit using 136 trillion rupiah ($8.9 billion) carryover cash from 2019, finance ministry officials said. ($1 = 15,200 rupiah) (Reporting by Gayatri Suroyo, Tabita Diela, Maikel Jefriando and Fransiska Nangoy; Editing by Alex Richardson)

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