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Indonesia president announces $25 billion spending to fight coronavirus

JAKARTA (Reuters) - Indonesia's President Joko Widodo on Tuesday said he had signed a regulation to let the government significantly raise spending in its fight against the coronavirus and widen the 2020 budget deficit to 5.07% of GDP.

Widodo also announced a national public health emergency, and said the government would spend 405.1 trillion rupiah ($24.85 billion) more on COVID-19 response, social welfare programs and economic stimulus, including a 3 percentage point cut in corporate tax rates to 22%.

The emergency regulation is effective immediately, but parliament must approve it to turn it into a law in its current session.

(Reporting by Gayatri Suroyo, Maikel Jefriando and Bernadette Christina Munthe; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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