(Reuters) - Indonesia's presidential election has turned into an open race between ex-general Prabowo Subianto and Jakarta Governor Joko "Jokowi" Widodo.
Opinion polls show Jokowi the clear frontrunner, but Prabowo has closed the gap ahead of the July 9 election, only the third direct presidential vote to be held in the world's most populous Muslim nation.
The following are details of Jokowi's and Prabowo's positions on major economic issues, according to the candidates, interviews with advisers, analysts briefed by the candidates and media.
Both candidates agree that fuel subsidies have become too costly for Southeast Asia's largest economy, but advocate different ways to resolve the problem.
PRABOWO - Will keep fuel prices at current rates but impose measures to ensure subsidies are only used by the poor and lower middle class. Under the plan, car owners would have to register their cars and reveal their income.
JOKOWI - Aims to cut government subsidies and raise fuel prices slowly over the next four to five years, saving the government $30 billion. An annual increase of up to 1,500 rupiah ($0.13) per liter of gasoline would be manageable, according to a close economic adviser to Jokowi's Indonesian Democratic-Party of Struggle (PDI-P).
MINERAL EXPORT BAN
Both candidates would keep the ban on mineral ore exports, which was imposed in January to force mining companies to process raw materials and build smelters in Indonesia.
PRABOWO - Aims to build 3,000 km of rail track over five years, 3,000 km of national highways, new seaports, and airports.
JOKOWI - Plans to build 2,000 km of roads nationwide, 10 new airports, 10 ports and 10 industrial estates. He will use the $30 billion saved from the reduction in fuel subsidies to help fund the infrastructure projects.
PRABOWO - Wants to increase the use of geothermal production to as much as 30,000 megawatts from around 1,300 megawatts currently. Indonesia's annual power needs are currently around 55,000 megawatts and increasing at 5,000 megawatts each year. Says Indonesia must consider nuclear power in the next 30-50 years.
JOKOWI - Wants to move consumption away from oil and replace it with more gas, coal and geothermal. Aims to remove up to 90 percent of diesel-fired power plants within three years, saving $7 billion in energy costs a year.
In lieu of the long delayed oil and gas law, the Jakarta governor would also issue a government regulation to replace the energy regulator.
Both candidates support making Indonesia more self-sufficient in agriculture, and less reliant on foreign imports.
PRABOWO - Advocates transforming 16 million hectares of destroyed forest into productive agricultural land. His plan, named the "Big Push", would use 10 million hectares to grow crops for biofuel use and 6 million for food. He would also build irrigation infrastructure for over 1.16 million hectares, and open up 2 million hectares of new land to increase production of rice, corn, soybeans, sugar cane and other crops.
JOKOWI - Seeks to build a minimum of 70 dams to improve productivity in the farming sector. He also wants to halt Indonesia's dependence on imports of agricultural and fishery products by increasing domestic production.
PRABOWO - Encourage national banks and other financial institutions to prioritize lending to farmers, fishermen, laborers, small- and medium-sized industries, traditional traders and other small businesses. He also wants to set up a farmers' and fishermen's bank for the specific purpose of channeling credit for agriculture and fisheries.
JOKOWI - Plans to restrict the sale of national banks to foreign investors.
($1 = 11,412.50 rupiah)
(Compiled by Randy Fabi)
- Politics & Government
- Prabowo Subianto