THE ARCHIPELAGO ECONOMY: UNLEASHING INDONESIA’S POTENTIAL

Indonesia in 2030Most intIndonesia to day 2030 a ernational businesses and investors know that modern Indonesia boasts a substantial population and a wealth of natural resources. But far fewer understand how rapidly the nation is growing. Home to the world’s 16th-largest economy, Indonesia is booming thanks largely to a combination of domestic consumption and productivity growth. By 2030, the country could have the world’s 7th-largest economy, overtaking Germany and the United Kingdom. But to meet its ambitious growth targets and attract international investment, it must do more.

Indonesia has an attractive value proposition. Over the past 20 years, labor productivity improvements, largely from specific sectors rather than a general shift out of agriculture, have accounted for more than 60 percent of the country’s economic growth. Productivity and employment have risen in tandem in 35 of the past 51 years.

And unlike typical Asian “tiger” economies, Indonesia’s has grown as a result of consumption, not exports and manufacturing. The archipelago nation is also urbanizing rapidly, boosting incomes. By 2030, Indonesia will have added 90 million people to its consuming class—more than any other country except China and India.

Exhibit

An estimated 90 million Indonesians will have joined the consuming class by 2030.

Nevertheless, to meet the government’s goal of 7 percent a year growth by 2030, the economy must grow faster. Given current trends, the McKinsey Global Institute estimates that Indonesia has to boost productivity growth to 4.6 percent a year—60 percent higher than it has been during the past decade. Amid rising concern about inequality, the country must also ensure that growth is inclusive and manage the strains that the rapidly expanding consumer classes will place on its infrastructure and resources.

Of course, Indonesia should tackle well-known problems such as excessive bureaucracy and corruption, access to capital, and infrastructure bottlenecks. But in addition it must address its impending skills gap; the country could, for example, develop a private-education market that might quadruple, to $40 billion, by 2030. If at the same time Indonesia took action in the three key sectors below, it could create a $1.8 trillion private-sector business opportunity by 2030:

  • Consumer services. Indonesia faces a range of challenges to productivity growth—including complex regulation of financial services, poor transportation infrastructure, and barriers to entry for new retail players and expansion limits for existing ones. If Indonesia overcame these problems, consumer spending could rise by 7.7 percent a year, to $1.1 trillion, by 2030.
  • Agriculture and fisheries. Indonesia needs to raise productivity per farmer by 60 percent just to meet domestic demand. If the country can boost yields, reduce postharvest waste, and shift to higher-value crops, it could become a net exporter of agricultural products, supplying more than 130 million tons to the international market. Revenue from these sectors, together with the related upstream and downstream revenues, could increase by 6 percent a year, to $450 billion, by 2030.
  • Energy. Demand not only for energy but also for other key resources, such as materials and water, is likely to increase rapidly through 2030. Indonesia could meet up to 20 percent of its energy needs by turning to unconventional sources, such as coal-bed methane, next-generation biofuels, geothermal power, and biomass. This approach could also help boost resource productivity—for example, improving the country’s energy efficiency could reduce energy demand by as much as 15 percent. By 2030, Indonesia’s energy market could be worth $210 billion.

Indonesia’s economy has enormous promise. Already the 16th-largest economy in the world, this dynamic archipelago has the potential to be the seventh biggest by 2030. It is a much more stable and diversified economy than many outside observers assume. In recent years, Indonesia has made enormous strides in its macroeconomic management. Inflation has fallen from double into single figures, and government debt as a share of GDP is now lower than in the vast majority of advanced economies. The economy, part of a resurgent Asia, is transforming rapidly. Indonesia has a young population and is quickly urbanising, powering growth in incomes. Between now and 2030, Indonesia will be home to an estimated 90 million additional consumers with considerable spending power.

This growth in Indonesia’s consuming class is stronger than in any economy of the world apart from China and India, a signal to international businesses and investors of considerable new opportunities. But Indonesia is at a critical juncture.

First, Indonesia faces a productivity imperative. The economy has performed relatively well on labour productivity, which has accounted for more than 60 percent of economic growth over the past two decades, the rest being delivered by growth in the labour force. But our analysis suggests that Indonesia needs to boost productivity growth by 60 percent from the rate achieved from 2000 to 2010 if the economy is to meet the government’s target of 7 percent annual GDP growth, above current trend growth of between 5 and 6 percent.

Second, an uneven distribution of growth across the archipelago and rising inequality are concerns. Indonesia might want to consider how to ensure that economic growth is as inclusive as possible. The third challenge is to ensure that Indonesia does not suffer from infrastructure and resource constraints as its expanding consuming class delivers a welcome injection of growth—and that this demand creates potentially lucrative new markets. In the years ahead, this once-in-a-generation economic transformation will need careful management.

This report highlights action that Indonesia could take in three key sectors— consumer services, agriculture and fisheries, and resources—to boost productivity and remove constraints on growth. In addition, we highlight ways to tackle an impending shortage of skills across all sectors. If Indonesia embraces these four priority areas, it has the opportunity to build on recent successes and create a platform for a productive, inclusive, and resilient economy in the long term.

INDONESIA’S RECENT IMPRESSIVE ECONOMIC PERFORMANCE IS NOT WIDELY UNDERSTOOD

The Indonesian economy, today the 16th largest in the world, has performed strongly over the past decade or more and is more diverse and stable than many observers from beyond its shores realise (Exhibit E2). Over the past decade or so, Indonesia has had the lowest volatility in economic growth among any advanced economy in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) or the BRICs (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) plus South Africa.

Government debt as a share of GDP has fallen by 70 percent over the past decade and is now lower than in 85 percent of OECD countries. Inflation has decreased from 20 percent to 8 percent and is now comparable with more mature economies such as South Africa and Turkey.

According to the World Economic Forum’s competitiveness report on Indonesia, in 2012 the country ranked 25th on macroeconomic stability, a dramatic improvement from its 2007 ranking of 89th place. Indonesia now ranks ahead of Brazil and India, as well as several ASEAN neighbours including Malaysia, Thailand, and the Philippines.

Another misperception is that Indonesia’s economic growth centres almost exclusively on Jakarta; in fact, many other Indonesian cities are growing more rapidly, albeit from a lower base. The fastest-growing urban centres are large and mid-sized middleweight cities with more than two million inhabitants (excluding Jakarta), which have posted annual average growth of 6.4 percent since 2002, compared with Jakarta’s 5.8 percent.

These cities include Medan, Bandung, and Surabaya as well as parts of Greater Jakarta such as Bogor, Tangerang, and Bekasi. Nor is Indonesia, as many assume, a typical Asian manufacturing exporter driven by its growing workforce or a commodity exporter driven by its rich endowments of natural resources. The reality is that, to a large extent, it is domestic consumption rather than exports, and services rather than manufacturing or resources, which are propelling growth. Indonesia’s exports as a share of GDP are roughly half those of Malaysia in 1989, when Malaysian average incomes were at similar levels to those of Indonesia today.

The resource sector’s share of the economy has actually fallen since 2000 despite booming resource prices. Mining and oil and gas account for only 11 percent of Indonesia’s nominal GDP, similar to more advanced economies such as Australia (8.4 percent) and Russia (11 percent). Indeed, Indonesia is a net oil importer. In contrast, services account for roughly half of economic output.

Over the past two decades, labour productivity improvements accounted for more than 60 percent of economic growth with the rest coming from more labour inputs due to an expanding working-age population. Perhaps surprisingly, the majority of Indonesia’s productivity gain has come not from a shift of workers from lower-productivity agriculture into more productive sectors, but from productivity improvements within sectors. The three sectors making the largest contributions to this productivity improvement are wholesale and retail trade; transport equipment and apparatus manufacturing; and transport and telecommunications.

And contrary to the widespread belief that productivity improves at the expense of employment, both have risen in tandem in Indonesia in 35 of the past 51 years. 

THE ECONOMIC OUTLOOK IS PROMISING, SUPPORTED BY FAVOURABLE LOCAL AND INTERNATIONAL TRENDS

Indonesia’s economic growth should benefit from a number of powerful positive trends including the resurgence of Asia, continuing urbanisation that is boosting the number of consumers with the power to spend on discretionary items, and a young population offering the economy a potential demographic dividend.

On the current expected trajectory of growth, an additional 90 million Indonesians could join the global consuming class by 2030, powered by the continued rise of urban Indonesia (Exhibit E3). Only China and India are likely to surpass this increase in absolute terms, while Brazil, Egypt, Vietnam, and other fast-growing economies will each bring less than half of Indonesia’s number into the consuming class in the same period. By 2030, Indonesia could become the seventh-largest economy in the world after China, the United States, India, Japan, Brazil, and Russia – overtaking Germany and the United Kingdom

  • The rise of Asia.

The global consuming class will increase its membership by 1.8 billion members over the next 15 years, of whom more than 75 percent are likely to be in Asia. The economic transformation in India and China is happening at a scale and pace unprecedented in history. Average incomes are growing at ten times the pace and on more than 200 times the scale of their increase during England’s Industrial Revolution. This will fuel demand for a range of resources and commodities supplied by Indonesia. Exports to other Asian economies, particularly those of China and India, have already accelerated strongly in recent years at annual growth rates of 15 to 20 percent. In 2010, Indonesia exported $3.8 billion of palm oil to India and $2.1 billion to China. In the same year, China was Indonesia’s largest export market for coal, receiving $3.6 billion, and India was the destination for $2.0 billion of coal exports.

  • Urbanisation.

The proportion of Indonesians living in urban areas could reach 71 percent in 2030, up from 53 percent today, as an estimated 32 million people move from rural to urban areas. New cities will be created, helping to increase the overall share of Indonesian GDP generated by urban areas from an estimated 74 percent today to 86 percent in 2030. Other urban areas will continue to outpace Jakarta’s growth.

Small middleweight cities, defined as having between 150,000 and two million inhabitants, will continue to contribute the majority of growth and increase their share of GDP to 37 percent (from 31 percent today) with annual growth of more than 6 percent. We expect that cities including Pekanbaru, Pontianak, Karawang, Makassar, and Balikpapan will lead growth among small middleweight cities, each having annual growth rates of more than 7 percent.

Growing even faster in relative terms at rates of around 7 percent are 20 mid-sized and large middleweight cities with between two million and ten million inhabitants. Together, these cities will contribute roughly one-quarter of GDP in 2030. In contrast, Jakarta’s contribution to GDP is expected to remain relatively constant, at around 20 percent.

  • Growing working-age population.

Indonesia’s young and expanding population could total 280 million by 2030, up from 240 million today. Unlike demographic trends in the many economies that are aging—including some in Asia—we expect those in Indonesia to remain positive until 2025 and contribute an annual 2.4 percent to overall economic growth until 2030.

  • An emerging digital and technology-driven nation.

Over the next decade, Indonesia will become a mobile and digital nation. Today there are 220 million mobile subscriptions in Indonesia. The Internet is becoming mainstream. Growing at an annual rate of more than 20 percent, Internet access is expected to reach 100 million users by 2016, dramatically improving connectivity.

Green technologies could also dramatically change the resource market in coming years. For instance, Indonesia is home to 40 percent of the world’s potentia geothermal energy sources. If fully exploited, these could generate up to 24 terawatt hours a year—roughly equivalent to 70 percent of Jakarta’s annual energy consumption today.

  • Growing working-age population.

Indonesia’s young and expanding population could total 280 million by 2030, up from 240 million today. Unlike demographic trends in the many economies that are aging—including some in Asia—we expect those in Indonesia to remain positive until 2025 and contribute an annual 2.4 percent to overall economic growth until 2030.

  • An emerging digital and technology-driven nation.

Over the next decade, Indonesia will become a mobile and digital nation. Today there are 220 million mobile subscriptions in Indonesia. The Internet is becoming mainstream. Growing at an annual rate of more than 20 percent, Internet access is expected to reach 100 million users by 2016, dramatically improving connectivity.

Green technologies could also dramatically change the resource market in coming years. For instance, Indonesia is home to 40 percent of the world’s potential geothermal energy sources. If fully exploited, these could generate up to 24 terawatt hours a year—roughly equivalent to 70 percent of Jakarta’s annual energy consumption today.

INDONESIA’S ECONOMY FACES SEVERAL CHALLENGES—AND ACTION IN FOUR AREAS WILL BE CRITICAL TO ADDRESSING THEM

To meet its triple challenge of boosting productivity, ensuring inclusive growth, and meeting the challenge of soaring demand from its expanding consumer class, Indonesia needs to tackle problems relating to excessive bureaucracy and corruption, access to capital, and infrastructure bottlenecks.

However, we believe that beyond these widely discussed issues, Indonesia could usefully prioritise tackling barriers in four key areas of the economy that have significant potential if current constraints on growth are removed.

Three of these four areas relate to transformation within three key sectors: consumer services, agriculture and fisheries, and resources. The fourth area is building worker skills to enable further diversification of the economy.

  1. 1.     Transform consumer services

The burgeoning consuming class will give rise to large new markets, notably in financial services and various retail services such as food and beverages (Exhibit E4). The new wave of consuming class in Indonesia is a huge opportunity, but to capture the full economic potential, the sector needs to boost its productivity and ensure that consumer services are widely available across the Indonesian archipelago. Telecommunications and broadband Internet can be one way to ensure a boost to productivity and improved access to consumer products services as it offers a means to overcome physical barriers. Relatively low levels of productivity in local consumer-facing service sectors explain more than 60 percent of Indonesia’s overall productivity gap with Malaysia today. There are a number of barriers to higher productivity. In financial services, regulation is often a constraint. In retail trade, protectionism that is preventing companies from adopting more efficient practices and is limiting competition is arguably holding back growth. In transportation, poor or insufficient infrastructure is a hindrance. Past MGI work has found that removing barriers to competition is crucial to promoting higher productivity in consumer services. Governments can play a vital role in this regard.

  1. 2.     Boost productivity in agriculture and fisheries

Increasing numbers of relatively affluent consumers in India and China and Indonesia itself will raise demand for food and agricultural products significantly. This increased demand comes at a time when more than eight million Indonesians may leave behind farming to migrate out of the countryside into cities; additionally, pressure on land resources is growing partly because cities are expanding.

As a consequence, productivity improvements in the agriculture and fisheries sector are a must. For example, to meet domestic demand alone, productivity among Indonesia’s farms will need to increase by more than 60 percent from just over three tons of crops per farmer to five tons in 2030.

Environmental concerns and urbanisation are both reasons that increases in production need to come from more intensive production systems rather than more extensive land use. Agriculture is responsible for a significant share of the deforestation and peat-land degradation that account for around 75 percent of Indonesia’s total greenhouse gas emissions.

In agriculture, if Indonesia pursued three approaches—boosting yields, shifting production into high-value crops, and reducing post-harvest and value-chain waste—Indonesia could become a large net exporter of agriculture products, supplying more than 130 million tons to the international market.

  1. 3.     Invest in skill building

Indonesia’s evolving economy will need new skills to support growth. Research by the World Bank suggests that human capital is a major obstacle to the development of a vibrant Indonesian manufacturing sector. The World Bank finds that 84 percent of employers in manufacturing report difficulties in filling management positions and 69 percent report problems in sourcing other skilled workers.

In addition, strict regulations related to the termination of a job create, a difficult environment for corporations. In order to achieve our base-case projection of between 5 and 6 percent annual GDP growth, we estimate that demand for semi-skilled and skilled workers will increase from today’s level of 55 million to 113 million by 2030, a rise of almost 60 million workers.

Increasing female participation to the level of Thailand today could add 20 million semi-skilled to skilled workers, but this would not be sufficient to meet Indonesia’s need for skills to support economic growth.

On current trends and policies, and assuming that female participation rises to the levels of Thailand today, we project that, by 2030, Indonesia could face a shortfall of nine million workers educated to the secondary and tertiary levels—nearly the population of Jakarta today.

Drawing on McKinsey’s global education work, we have identified three measures that could help to close the looming skills gap:

(1) raise the standard of teaching significantly, with an emphasis on attracting and developing great teachers;

(2) develop a more demand-driven curriculum; and

(3) create new, flexible education pathways. Closing the skills gap will require significant investment. Assuming that the government continues to spend about 3 percent of GDP a year on public education, there could be a gap of $8 billion a year by 2030 given expected total demand for education.

CONCERTED ACTION IN THESE FOUR AREAS COULD OFFER BUSINESSES A $1.8 TRILLON OPPORTUNITY BY 2030

If Indonesia acts decisively in these four areas, we estimate that they collectively offer private-sector business an opportunity that could be worth $1.8 trillion by 2030, the lion’s share of which would come from consumer services (Exhibit E6).

  • Consumer services. With an additional 90 million consumers expected in Indonesia, consumer spend in urban areas could increase at 7.7 percent a year to become a $1.1 trillion business opportunity by 2030. The total opportunity could increase to $1.5 trillion if Indonesia were to achieve the government’s 7 percent annual GDP growth national target, a growth rate that would result in 125 million new consumers. There will be business opportunities across consumer services, but the largest is expected to be in financial services.
  • Agriculture and fisheries. Revenue from agriculture and fisheries could increase at a rate of 6 percent per year to reach $450 billion by 2030. Revenue from production could increase to $250 billion, with increasing yields accounting for almost half the total potential increase. The downstream food and beverages industry could develop into a $180 billion opportunity, while upstream activities, such as machinery, fertiliser, and seeds could offer additional annual potential of $10 billion and total potential of $20 billion a year.

We see the largest absolute production potential in the provinces of West, East, and Central Java, while East Nusa Tenggara could be the location for one of the fastest-growing opportunities in this sector.

  • Resources. In 2030, the Indonesian energy market could be worth about $270 billion, including both the opportunity in new sources of energy and the savings from pursuing energy-efficiency measures. New sources of energy such as geothermal and biofuels could grow rapidly at rates of more than 10 percent a year to become over a $60 billion market. Measures to increase energy efficiency could be worth an additional $60 billion in savings and societal value by 2030.
    • Human capital. There is a large opportunity in private education, demand for which could potentially increase four-fold from $10 billion a year to an estimated $40 billion in 2030. We project that the number of students in private education will nearly double to 27 million by 2030. If this opportunity were realised, Indonesia could expand its labour force by an additional 13 million semi-skilled and skilled workers.

To capture these opportunities, businesses will need to rethink their geographical footprint in Indonesia given the shift toward middleweight cities and the rise of new, economically important regional centres. Businesses will also need to consider how they can collaborate most effectively with local governments to tackle some of the barriers impeding regional growth today and how they can best develop local talent, particularly in the ranks of middle management.

Indonesia could be on the cusp of a new era of sustained growth and rising prosperity with the advantage of a following wind from major domestic and international trends. But there is still much to do if the archipelago economy is to make the most of this opportunity. In chapter 1, we examine five misconceptions common among external observers of Indonesia’s economy. In chapter 2, we look at Indonesia in the context of powerful positive trends that should buoy growth.

In chapter 3, we discuss some of the barriers to growth that Indonesia faces, highlighting the importance of action in four priority areas. Finally, in chapter 4, we size the potential private-sector opportunity in Indonesia and offer some brief thoughts on how businesses need to react and adapt to prospects in the archipelago economy today.

Created: September 2012 | by: Raoul Oberman, Richard Dobbs, Arief Budiman, Fraser Thompson and Morten Rossé