JAKARTA, Indonesia, AP -Indonesia’s economy is unlikely to be seriously affected by a powerful earthquake that killed more than 4,300 people and flattened tens of thousands of houses, the central bank said Monday.
“Such an earthquake will of course disturb our (economic) growth assumptions going ahead, but I don’t think the impact will be so huge,” Bank Indonesia Governor Burhanuddin Abdullah told reporters.
“We believe many things can be done to catch up (on lost economic growth) in the second half” of the year, he said.
Abdullah said “many things can be done” to help stimulate economic growth to compensate for any contraction caused by Saturday’s earthquake. He did not elaborate.
The magnitude-6.3 quake destroyed at least 21,000 buildings, according to the Red Cross. It was centered south of Yogyakarta, a tourist destination and the location of two large UNESCO World Heritage sites, the Buddhist temple complex of Borobodur and the Hindu temples of Prambanan.
Borobodur was reportedly undamaged, but the earthquake sent intricate carved reliefs crashing to the ground and destroyed years of restoration work at Prambanan.
Tourist arrivals are expected to fall in the near term but then rebound.
Yogyakarta contributes 1.3 percent of Indonesia’s total annual gross domestic product, and estimated reconstruction costs of $100 million are unlikely to strain the national budget, analysts said.
Indonesia’s government has forecast 6.2 percent economic growth in 2006, up from 5.6 percent growth last year.