Indonesia’s falling imports signals cooling economic activity

first_imgIndonesia’s imports have fallen for 10 consecutive months in April as manufacturing companies cut production output while consumer demand continues to shrink amid the COVID-19 pandemic, signaling cooling economic activity going forward.The country recorded US$12.54 billion in imports in April, an 18.58 percent drop from the same period last year. Imports of consumer goods plunged 16.6 percent, while incoming shipments of raw materials and capital goods dropped 19.1 percent and 17.1 percent, respectively, Statistics Indonesia (BPS) announced on Friday.“This will be bad for the national economy because this may risk greater deindustrialization as nobody can be sure whether the industry may be able to produce [normally] again,” Indonesian Commerce and Industry (Kadin) deputy chairwoman Shinta Kamdani told The Jakarta Post Friday. She added that manufacturing companies had cut production as domestic and global demand for non-primary products had fallen significantly.“There is not much we can do unless we control the outbreak immediately and inject a greater financial stimulus for the economy,” she said.The manufacturing industry accounted for almost 20 percent of Indonesia’s gross domestic product (GDP), the largest among other business sectors. Meanwhile, household consumption contributed to more than half of the economy.At least 16,400 people in Indonesia have contracted COVID-19 as of Friday afternoon, with the death toll exceeded 1,000, according to official data. The outbreak has forced shops, factories, offices and schools to shut down as part of the government’s large scale social restriction (PSBB) policy in several regions, including manufacturing centers Jakarta and West Java. IHS Markit announced recently that Indonesia’s Purchasing Managers Index (PMI), a gauge of the nation’s manufacturing activities, fell to 27.5 from 45.3 recorded in March, the worst decline in the survey’s nine-year history. A number above 50 reflects expansion, while one below 50 indicates contraction.Indonesia’s trade balance recorded a deficit of US$350 million in April — after booking a surplus a month before — on the back of falling commodity prices and plummeting global demand amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to BPS data. Exports fell 7.02 percent annually to $12.19 billion.Mirae Asset Sekuritas Indonesia economist Anthony Kevin said the April trade data painted a reflection of social restrictions implemented by Indonesia and lockdowns in several of its main trading partners.“Indonesia’s key export markets effectively applied social distancing measures for most of the month, which then led to notable pressures on their manufacturing activities,” Kevin said, adding that at home, Indonesian consumers’ purchasing power also weakened as reflected by the falling imports of consumption goods nearing the Idul Fitri holiday.“We project that demand for consumption goods for the rest of 2020 will remain weak as there won’t be any momentum left to jack up demand [after Ramadan],” he told the Post over phone interview.Indonesia’s private consumption usually peaks during Ramadan and Idul Fitri, which falls from April to May this year.Household spending grew sluggishly by 2.84 percent yoy in the first quarter from 5.02 percent in the corresponding period last year as millions of people lost their jobs because of the pandemic. Indonesia’s economic growth slowed to 2.97 percent from 5.07 percent in the same period in 2019.Maybank Indonesia chief economist Juniman projected that imports would shrink by up to 19 percent and exports to plummet by 10 percent in the second quarter this year amid large-scale social restrictions implemented across the country.“With the ongoing social restrictions and plummeting global demand, we expect the domestic economy to contract by 2 percent to 4 percent in the second quarter,” said Juniman, adding that economic recovery and trade activities would depend on the COVID-19 containment progress.Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said in mid-April that the second quarter would be the hardest quarter this year as economic growth could fall to 0.3 percent and even contract by 2.6 percent before slightly recovering to 1.5 percent to 2.8 percent in the third quarter.“If the difficult situation lasts long enough, there is a possibility of a recession in which Indonesia’s GDP contracts for two consecutive quarters. This is what we’re trying to avoid,” she said.Topics :last_img read more

Pulis: I knew Jewell could quit

first_img Pulis is still looking to appoint a goalkeeping coach and remained tight-lipped on his former Stoke keeper Carlo Nash landing the role. He is also hopeful of adding to his squad to aid their fight against relegation with the Baggies 14th in the Barclays Premier League, but three points above the drop zone, ahead of Monday’s trip to Everton. “It’s an important two weeks in the window, important for the football club,” Pulis said. “The players we bring in have to be better than what we have, they have to make a difference. It’s a difficult window if you haven’t been preparing. “We have to make sure players are right. We’ve been busy behind the scenes but it’s very difficult. We have to get that team winning. I really do think it will be tough.” The Baggies boss admitted he heard Jewell was interested in the vacant Charlton job. The Addicks instead appointed Guy Luzon and Jewell left West Brom on Tuesday, following the arrival of Gerry Francis on a part-time basis, just a week after he was appointed joint-assistant head coach. Press Association Jewell, who has now been linked with a coaching job at Hull, is taking legal advice in the wake of his departure but Pulis insisted it did not come as a shock. “I had a phone call on Sunday saying Paul was in for the Charlton job. I spoke to him on Sunday but that was the last time I spoke to Paul,” he said. “I have been concentrating on getting stuff sorted out at this football club. I have been non-stop. “If it was going to be Charlton, Hull or whoever he is a good lad to have on board. “He has been linked with a few jobs, so we’ll see what happens. I hope he gets back into it, that’s where he should be and where he belongs.” Pulis is looking to appoint a replacement and spoke to chairman Jeremy Peace on Thursday but is in no rush to find a new man and will continue to work with long-time number two Dave Kemp. He said: “Myself and Kempy have done it by ourselves before and Gerry (Francis) comes up every other day. “We will get on with it. People make decisions and that’s it, you move on. I have got nothing but respect for Paul, he is a good guy.” Head coach Tony Pulis has hinted he knew Paul Jewell could quit West Brom 48 hours before his exit.last_img read more

New batlike dinosaur was early experiment in flight

first_img Even Ambopteryx’s stomach contents were preserved. Researchers recovered pieces of bone and small rocks called gastroliths, which modern birds use to grind plant material, indicating the species may have been omnivorous. Though the creature was replete with feathers, these were a downy fuzz and not used for flight. O’Connor also speculates that males of the species may have sported long ornamental tail feathers, possibly to woo females, as can be seen in other scansoriopterygid fossils.The complete skeleton has allowed scientists to make the first detailed analysis of differences in wing design and mode of flight between these dinosaurs and birds. Researchers measured the bones of the arms and fingers in each type of wing and compared them using statistical methods.Ambopteryx’s wings were formed by elongating the humerus and ulna, the bones of the upper and lower arm in humans, the team reports today in Nature. Birds instead achieved flight by elongating their metacarpals, analogous to our fingers. “The main lift-generating surface of birds’ wings is formed by feathers,” O’Connor explains. “In bats, pterosaurs [dinosaur-era reptiles that flew similar to bats], and now scansoriopterygids—you instead have flaps of skin that are stretched out in between skeletal elements.”“This new discovery shows Yi qi was not an aberrant species, but that there was an entire group of bat dinosaurs taking to the skies in the [Jurassic],” says Darla Zelenitsky, a paleontologist at the University of Calgary in Canada who has studied feathered dinosaurs.However, although nearly 10,000 species of birds live today, no scansoriopterygids survived past the end of the Jurassic. That suggests their early experiment in flight was far less successful, O’Connor says. Still, she says, their existence is remarkable, given that flight has only evolved in a handful of groups of animals across the entire history of life. “The idea that flight evolved more than once in dinosaurs is incredibly exciting and hasn’t quite sunk into the scientific community yet.”“The evolution of flight wasn’t a gradual march from dinosaur to bird,” Brusatte adds. “It involved lots of experimentation and tinkering.” By John PickrellMay. 8, 2019 , 1:00 PM Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country The new Ambopteryx fossil, with two folded wings in the center and the remains of fuzzy feathers along the neck A number of tiny, bat-winged dinosaurs flew the Jurassic skies, according to the strongest evidence yet for such creatures—a well-preserved fossil of a starling-size fluffball that may have looked a little like a flying squirrel. The find, recovered near a farming village in northeastern China, suggests dinosaurs were experimenting with several methods of flight during this period, but many were an evolutionary dead end.“This fossil seals the deal—there really were bat-winged dinosaurs,” says Stephen Brusatte, a paleontologist at the University of Edinburgh who was not involved with the study.Scientists were already confident that a number of dinosaurs could fly. There are birds, of course, which are technically dinosaurs and appeared during the Jurassic period, at least 150 million years ago. Other dinosaurs sported feathers on their hind- and forelimbs, effectively giving them four birdlike wings. Min Wang/Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology/Chinese Academy of Sciences Email Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Then, in 2015, researchers discovered a dinosaur that may have flown more like a bat. Named Yi qi (Mandarin for “strange wing”) and discovered in northwestern China, the crow-size creature appeared to have a flap of skin stretched between its body and arm bones that was supported by a rod of cartilage. But the fossil, which belongs to an enigmatic group of dinosaurs called the scansoriopterygids, was partial and poorly preserved, so scientists couldn’t be sure it actually flew like a bat. “There’s been debate about whether the skin flap was really an airfoil or used for another purpose,” Brusatte says.The new fossil, named Ambopteryx longibrachium (meaning “both-wing” and “long arm,” referring to this second method of dinosaur flight) and dated to about 163 million years ago during the Jurassic period, doesn’t have that problem. Nearly every part of the little dino—which was uncovered by a farmer who provides the fossils he finds to the Chinese Academy of Sciences’s Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology (IVPP) in Beijing—is well-preserved, including membranous batlike wings similar to those of Yi qi. “You could have fit it in your hand,” says IVPP paleontologist and study author Jingmai O’Connor. “It would have been this tiny, bizarre-looking, buck-toothed thing like nothing alive today.” Min Wang/Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology/Chinese Academy of Sciences New batlike dinosaur was early experiment in flight An artist’s illustration of Ambopteryxlast_img read more