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Population: 235 million, of which just over half live in urban areas.

Political structure:  A republic with an elected president.  The capital is Jakarta and the official language is Bahasa Indonesia, but Javanese and other local languages are also spoken.  Indonesia is a member of ASEAN (the Association of South East Asian Nations.)

Economy: Indonesia produces oil, gas, palm oil and a range of minerals, including as gold, nickel and coal.  Manufacturing is an important part of the economy with exports of textiles, electrical appliances and rubber.   Many areas rely on agriculture and environmental degradation is been a problem with the government taking measures to stop illegal timber cutting.

Major export destinations are Japan, the US and Singapore for exports of oil, gas, minerals and palm oil.  The country’s major import partners are Singapore, China and Japan for fuel, foodstuffs, chemicals and steel.

GDP (2008): US$496.8 billion, per capita US$2,181

The ADB estimates that 15 per cent of Indonesians live below the poverty line.



Updated September 2009

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