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Indonesia President Joko Widodo’s approval rating hits a six-year low as goods costs rise



Indonesia President Joko Widodo approval rating hits a six year low as goods costs rise

Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s approval rating has hit a six-year low amid disappointment over developing cooking oil costs and the apparent failure of an export ban to quickly diminish the increasing cost of goods, a new poll displayed on Sunday (May 15).

Figures released by pollster Indikator Politik Indonesia showed that satisfaction with Indonesia’s president, commonly referred to as Jokowi, tumbled to 58.1% this May.

The figures are the lowest rating since December 2015 when the president’s approval slumped to 53%.

The decline, which follows a 12-point drop from January toward April this year, comes as Southeast Asia’s biggest economy has battled to reign in domestic cooking oil costs, a household staple in Indonesia, and after a shock decision to ban palm oil exports before the end of last month.

Indonesia is the world’s biggest producer of palm oil and the policy decision shocked global markets.

At the time president, Jokowi said the requirement for affordable food trumped revenue concerns, and the boycott would be lifted after domestic necessities were met.

Led from May 5 to May 10, the Indikator survey said the decrease in Jokowi’s approval was generally connected with the increasing cost of cooking oil and flow-on inflationary impact, and the gap between policy expectations and realities on the ground after the commodity boycott failed to see costs drop altogether after the decision.

The poll, which surveyed 1,200 people, found that while just about 90% supported the export ban, more than 72% said cooking oil costs stayed more expensive, or not affordable at all.

The presidential palace was not quickly available for comment.

Chief Economics Minister Airlangga Hartarto has said the export ban would remain set up until bulk cooking oil costs drop to 14,000 rupiahs for each liter the nation over.

Starting last Thursday, trade ministry data showed bulk cooking oil was being sold at 16,600 rupiahs for every liter.

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