The FINANCIAL — Indonesia’s trade surplus widened sharply to $1.33 billion in July, thanks to a decline in imports amid weakening economic activity, government data showed on August 18, according to Nasdaq.
Economists polled by The Wall Street Journal expected a surplus of $365 million.
The Statistics Agency said exports fell 19.23% from a year earlier to $11.41 billion in July, and dropped 15.53% from a month earlier as coal exports dropped 22.17% in value. Crude palm oil fell 7.6% from June.
July’s imports fell 28.44% to $10.08 billion from a year earlier, and 22.36% from June as the rupiah’s drop to a 17- year low against the U.S. dollar further hurt imports.
The rising trade surplus may help further narrow Indonesia’s current-account deficit. But tumbling exports and imports indicated that the expected turnaround for domestic economic activity remained elusive.
Indonesia recorded $5.73 billion trade surplus during the January-July period, the agency said.