Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudoyono gave an upbeat assessment
on the state of the nation during his annual address to parliament and
vowed to tackle the nation's energy crisis. VOA correspondent Nancy-Amelia Collins in Jakarta has more.
his State of the Union Address to Parliament Friday Indonesian
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono sounded optimistic about the
nation's economy, his government's efforts to crack down on graft and
corruption, and vowed to tackle the country's power supply crisis.
spokesman Andi Mallarangeng said rising oil prices have affected the
economy, but growth was expected to hold steady in 2009 at just over 6
"Although we have also been affected by the global
economy, we are optimistic because our economy is still growing over 6
percent per year for the last eight quarters, and the first quarter of
this year we still grow at 6.4 percent and so we are cautious but we
are optimistic about the situation," he said.
Yudhoyono said he would try to solve the country's growing energy
crisis through projects to develop alternative energy such as
micro-hydro power, biofuel, and
geothermal, aiming to expand the country's electricity capacity by 30 percent next year.
and economic growth have left power suppliers unable to meet bigger
electricity demands, causing growing power shortages throughout the
In addition, much of Indonesia's domestic coal is being
exported to China and India for greater profit while the country relies
mainly on coal and oil to meet its electricity demands.
Yudhoyono also pledged peaceful elections scheduled for next year, but
did not formally declare his intentions to run, although he is widely
expected to do so.
The president also pointed out Indonesia's
success in resolving a number of religious conflicts in the country
including the troubled region of Poso on Sulawesi island, and the separatist rebellion in Aceh on the northern tip of Sumatra island.
spokesman Mallarangeng says while the government had been successful in
its fight against terrorism, it would remain vigilant.
upbeat that our records show that we have been able to go after the
terrorist activities, terrorist cells, and etcetera," he said. "The
president also warns that there is always a possibility [of] attack
from terrorist [but] we are determined to make sure that any terrorism
based on whatever reason they may be - we will go after them, we will
Yudhoyono also vowed to continue to crack down on graft and corruption which is endemic in the country.