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Next Indonesian leader walks into economic storm

Published on Jul 6, 2014 12:46 PM

JAKARTA (AFP) - The winner of this week's Indonesian presidential election faces serious challenges to keep South-east Asia's top economy on track, from cutting fuel subsidies and fighting corruption to revamping creaking infrastructure and boosting spending on the poor.

On top of that he will have to balance a rising tide of economic nationalism that has dimmed the country's appeal as an investment destination with an urgent need to keep foreign funds flowing.

Of the two candidates, Joko Widodo - who has seen a once-huge poll lead dwindle to just a few points - is investors' favourite.

The Jakarta governor, known by his nickname Jokowi, is considered clean in a country where corruption is rampant and a potential reformer, although an increasingly nationalistic tone during the election campaign has caused some unease.

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