Indonesia cbank says to maintain rupiah at 9,500-9,600 per USD

JAKARTA, Oct 12 (Reuters) - Indonesia's central bank will maintain the rupiah at 9,500-9,600 per U.S. dollar until the end of the year due to an economic slowdown in Southeast Asia's biggest economy, Governor Darmin Nasution told reporters on Friday.

Bank Indonesia "sees (the weakening of the rupiah) and is trying to maintain and promote it so that it is at its fundamental ... It would be around that level (9,500-9,600 per dollar)," Nasution said.

"Not only exports and imports but the economy itself is weakening, so we will guard it at the range," he said.

On Thursday, Bank Indonesia kept its benchmark rate steady at 5.75 percent for an eighth consecutive month.

The rupiah has weakened more than 5 percent against the dollar so far this year and is the worst performer in the region.

(Reporting by Adriana Nina Kusuma; Writing by Rieka Rahadian; Editing by Matthew Bigg and John Mair)

((rieka.rahadiana@thomsonreuters.com)(+6221 3199 7170)(Reuters Messaging: rieka.rahadiana.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

Keywords: INDONESIA ECONOMY/RUPIAH