President: Unite Nation’s Energy to Manage Pandemic
Date 25 Februari 2021
President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo on Thursday (25/02/2021) stated that Indonesia has passed its most difficult time due to the COVID-19 pandemic that has occurred for one year.
Therefore, the President expressed optimism that 2021 is the year for the country to rebound.
The President made the statement in his keynote speech at the 2021 CNBC Indonesia Economic Outlook virtually from the State Palace, Jakarta.
“We have undergone the most difficult time of our economic growth. Now, 2021 is the recovery period, the resurrection period that we have to welcome with optimism, enthusiasm, and hard work, full of courage,” he said.
The Head of State also pointed out that several world financial agencies, such as the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, predicted that Indonesia’s economic growth in 2021 will grow to approximately 4-5 percent.
“We must prove that Indonesia can be better than predicted. The term is simple. The nation’s energy must unite, must focus on handling health crises and increase economic growth with high quality,” he stated.
The President underscored that the ability to overcome the pandemic is key to economic recovery.
To achieve it, he added, the Government controls the pandemic by continuing to discipline health protocols with 3M measures (washing hands, wearing a mask, maintaining a safe distance), 3T measures (testing, tracing, treatment), micro-scale public activity restrictions, and by carrying out COVID-19 vaccinations.
For the record, the Government since 13 January has run a free vaccination program for the public. After the first vaccination stage which targeted health care workers was completed, the Government began the second stage, targeting public service workers and senior citizens aged 60 and above.
Furthermore, the Head of State said that the Government also oversees vaccination acceleration in crowded clusters, so herd immunity can be achieved immediately.
“I hope everyone can participate to support this vaccination. Indonesia must be safe from COVID-19 immediately and we will show the world that we are foremost in handling this global crisis,” he remarked.
The President also stated that the speed in health crisis management is in tune with the efforts to accelerate national economic recovery.
According to the President, the Government has prepared a budget of Rp372 trillion in 2021 to accelerate national economic recovery and given numerous stimuli to recover the demand and supply sides, including through social aid program, Family Hope Program, wage subsidy, Pre-employment Card, Cash for Labor-Intensive Work program, Productive Aid for MSMEs, loan relaxation and restructuring program, tax relaxation, and other facilities.
The labor-intensive program and other Government spending can create short-term employment opportunities; thus, the President emphasized the importance of businesspersons’ role in continuous job creation.
“Continuous job opportunity creation and expansion come from businesspersons in the private sector, both by reviving existing businesses and starting new businesses,” he said.
The President further said that the Government has prepared efforts for national economic recovery, one of which is through a structural reform stipulated in the Job Creation Law and the implementing regulations.
“The Job Creation Law and the implementing regulations, Government Regulations and Presidential Regulations, have been completed and will provide facilities for job creation, job opening, and economic growth,” he stated.
The President further said that the Sovereign Wealth Fund or Indonesia Investment Authority has been formed to obtain alternative funding for the development of the country.
“Our strong capitals will be more effective with the support of everyone. The contribution of economists, businesspersons, and investors to formulate economic regulations that are most suitable for Indonesia is valuable, so when the pandemic is over, we can grow well,” he said.
The President closed his speech by appealing to everyone to cooperate to rise and recover from the pandemic.
“Let us prove that our economic growth in 2021 is higher than predicted and jobs are available and the people’s welfare improves,” he stated.
The 2021 Economic Outlook held by CNBC Indonesia, adopting the theme of Heading Toward Indonesia’s Economic Recovery in 2021, was also attended by Ministers of the Indonesia Onward Cabinet, Founder and Chairman of CT Corp Chairul Tanjung, economists, investors, and market players. (FID/UN) (DH/EP)