The outcome of the election could mean either a humiliating defeat for hardline Islamic groups or a boost to their legitimacy within the political sphere.
While support for the embattled Ahok is rising, his opponents are likely to remain vocal against his candidacy. It could also indicate, though, that the public may be taking some of those groups less seriously than before.
The protests, counter protest and arrest of individuals suspected of treason are a result of increasing political manoeuvring in the country.
Bilateral relations between Indonesia and Singapore have the potential to strengthen over the coming years as trade and investment grows. This may facilitate resolutions to a number of disagreements that have placed a strain on the relationship.
The Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement is the key to improving the depth of the trade relationship. Addressing incorrect perceptions of each other will also be crucial.
It is unlikely that Busiki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama, the incumbent governor of Jakarta, will be charged over the alleged blasphemy that spawned the protests, but the racist undertones seen in the rally and election campaign are concerning.
Indonesia’s Tropical Landscape Finance Facility: A Catalyst for Environmental Sustainability and Long-Term Food Security?
Indonesia must promote green growth, investment and sustainable ecological management to meet its commitments to the Paris Climate Agreement and safeguard long-term food security.
President Joko Widodo will be looking to expand investment and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will be keen to see Indonesia ease the restrictions on cattle imports. While the focus will be on economic relations, both countries will stand to benefit from closer co-operation in counter-terrorism.
The Indonesian Government has ambitious plans to expand the tourism sector by developing ten new tourist destinations by 2019, but it is not certain that it will actually have the funds needed to achieve those plans.
It appears likely that Indonesia will win its bid for a seat on the United Nations Security Council despite growing opposition to human rights abuses in West Papua.