Indonesia’s Election Heats Up After Television Debate

Indonesia’s presidential candidates sparred over vested interests and corruption impeding the country’s economic progress, in a final debate ahead of this week’s neck-and-neck election.

Vice presidential contender Jusuf Kalla, 72, the running mate of Jakarta Governor Joko Widodo, said the two had no “mafia” standing by their side and asked Widodo’s challenger, former army general Prabowo Subianto, who he was referring to in comments about the risk of a kleptocracy in Indonesia. Prabowo, speaking in the July 5 televised debate, said democracy was at risk of drowning in improper practices.

The efforts of both sides to tout their commitment to fighting graft, in a country which ranked 114th among 177 countries in a 2013 Transparency International survey on corruption perceptions, shows how tight the race is ahead of the July 9 vote. Survey company Roy Morgan said the election is “too close to call,” as its latest poll showed 52 percent support for Widodo, known as Jokowi, and 48 percent for Prabowo.

via Bloomberg

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza