8/24/2008

Indonesia's president is troubled by rising prices

Rising fuel prices are making the president less popular in Indonesia

The damage to the standing of the Indonesian president, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, caused by the 30% increase in government-administered fuel prices in May has been reflected in recent opinion polls, in which his nearest contender, Megawati Soekarnoputri, who chairs the opposition Indonesian Democratic Party-Struggle (PDI-P), has taken a lead. A survey in June by a local polling company, Indo Barometer, put voter support for Ms Soekarnoputri at 30.4%, compared with 20.7% for Mr Yudhoyono. Prior to the May fuel price increase, the president led his nearest rival by a considerable margin in a range of opinion polls.

Polls have repeatedly highlighted the fact that economic problems are voters' main concern, and it is therefore no surprise that Mr Yudhoyono's rating has fallen as the result of a policy change that had an immediate and tangible impact on the cost of living. However, a fight-back by the president in the opinion polls is to be expected once the effects of the fuel price increases have played out through the economy. Bank Indonesia (BI, the central bank) estimates that this process will be completed within two months. ...



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[Source: The Economist: News analysis - Posted by King Of Videos and Blogs]

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