Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesia’s trade balance registered a surplus for the 12th consecutive month in April this year to reach US$2.19 billion, fueling hopes a recovery is in progress, the Central Statistics Agency (BPS) announced on Thursday.

“The surplus didn’t shrink, but the figures were even stronger than the previous month. The trade balance has experienced a surplus for 12 consecutive months since May, 2020,” said BPS head Suhariyanto at an online press conference here on Thursday.

The surplus arose from exports of $18.48 billion and imports of $16.29 billion in April, 2021, he informed.

Suhariyanto said the surplus in April was very encouraging and in line with other indicators that also showed very good conditions.

One of the indicators was the manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), which touched 54.6 in April, indicating an expansion in the domestic processing industry.

"This gives great expectations that the recovery process is taking place, despite the conditions being different in each region and certain sectors," the BPS head observed.

Non-oil and gas commodities that contributed the most to the April surplus were animal and vegetable oils, mineral fuels, and steel.

Meanwhile, Indonesia’s trade balance recorded a surplus of $1.2 billion with the United States, $554 million with the Philippines, and $439 million with India.

The nation’s trade balance experienced a deficit of $652 million with China, $418.3 million with Australia, and $248.1 million with Thailand.

Overall, Indonesia's trade balance in January-April, 2021 registered a surplus of $7.72 billion, with exports pegged at $67.38 billion and imports valued at $59.67 billion.

The figure was very encouraging as it was much higher than the surplus of $2.22 billion recorded in January-April, 2020, said Suhariyanto.

Indonesia's trade balance had recorded a deficit of $2.28 billion during the same period of 2019, a deficit of $1.41 billion in 2018, and a surplus of $5.43 billion in 2017.

"Compared to the same period in 2014, the surplus in January-April, 2021 is very good. The figures are much higher. We must maintain this performance and need to be supported by all parties. Therefore, handling COVID-19 is the key to support this achievement," Suhariyanto said. (INE)

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Translator: Sella Panduarsa Gareta, Katria
Editor: Suharto
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