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Jakarta (VNA) – Indonesia’s second-quarter economic growth has surpassed expectation as spending surged, particularly during Ramadan holiday, said the country’s statistics bureau.

The largest economy in the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) expanded 5.18 percent against the same period last year. The figure exceeded the 5 percent estimated earlier and the last quarter’s growth of 4.92 percent.

In a related development, Minister of Finance Sri Mulyani Indrawati revealed that the country will cut down government spending by 133 trillion rupiah (10.1 billion USD) due to the world’s unfavorable economic impacts, goods prices, and low demand as well as anticipated insufficient source of revenue. 

Although the government is resolved to implement the belt-tightening policy to maintain budget deficit at an acceptable limit of under 3 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) but strategic infrastructure projects will be still prioritized, the minister said, adding that the current budget deficit of Indonesia is at 2.35 percent of GDP.

According to the statistics bureau’s data, Indonesia’s exports have experienced the 21st straight month of fall as a downward trend has been seen in the country’s key export markets, especially China which consumed 25 percent of Indonesia’s total coal exports.

Indonesia’s Ministry of Finance said tax collection for 2016 is expected to fall short of target by 219 trillion rupiah (22.5 billion USD) or 21 percent of the target of 1.34 quadrillion rupiah (101 billion USD).-VNA