Political Risk Analysis - Election Risks Rising To The Fore - APR 2018
BMI View: We have downgraded Indonesia's short-term political risk index score to 71.5, from 72.3 previously, to reflect heightened downside risks to political stability in the run up to the June regional elections and April 2019 national elections. Lawmakers are likely to increasingly pander to religious conservatives, while factionalism within the ruling coalition is showing signs of deepening.
Indonesia has seen a rise in Islamic conservatism since the early 2000s, and the election of Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan in 2017 as well as the incarceration of former governor Basuki Purnama (Ahok) on blasphemy charges further accentuates this underlying trend. Our concern is that given the effectiveness of a religiously-driven campaign, opposition forces will mobilise conservative religious groups ever more to gain prominence and voter support. Although President Joko 'Jokowi' Widodo is considered a liberal and has shown a reluctance to lean towards a more religiously conservative style of politics, we believe that his administration will be forced to increasingly pander to religious conservatives as the 2019 national elections draw closer. We also see signs that factionalism within the ruling coalition is starting to deepen further, posing downside risks to short-term political stability. Accordingly, we have notched down Indonesia's short-term political risk index score to 71.5, from 72.3 previously.
Conservative Islam Gaining Traction As Lawmakers Seek To Shore Up Support