|執筆者||William E. James|
Export performance weakened in 1997. The 7.3 percent growth rate of total merchandise exports was below the 9.7 percent growth in the previous year. This decline was largely caused by a nearly one percent drop in the value of oil and gas exports. However, non-oil/gas export growth actually improved to 9.8 percent from 9.0 percent the previous year. In volume terms, Indonesian non-oil/gas exports increased by 12.5 percent in 1997 compared with 1996. Imports actually recorded negative growth (-2.1 percent) in 1997, with non-oil/gas imports falling 4.1 percent. Oil and gas imports rose by 9.1 percent in 1997 and coupled with the decline in oil and gas exports, this reduced the sector’s contribution to the 1997 trade surplus. The future growth of non-oil exports is highly uncertain. External demand in Japan and the rest of East Asia has weakened considerably. Among other things, the competitiveness of Indonesian exports depends upon the extent to which the massive nominal depreciation results in real exchange rate depreciation and upon the effect of the real depreciation of the other Asian countries’ currencies. An immediate problem in evaluating Indonesian export performance and prospects is the lack of accurate information on the composition, growth and direction of non-oil manufactured exports. The simplification of the export documentation, while useful, has, unfortunately, resulted in a problem in Indonesian export statistics. A solution to this problem is proposed in this working paper.