Social Safety Net Program to Support People during Large-scale Social Restrictions
Social safety net program must be conducted thoroughly to ensure that people can meet their basic needs and support health measures taken by the Government including the Large-scale Social Restrictions (PSBB), according to Minister of Finance Sri Mulyani.
“Minister of Social Affairs has mentioned before that in the package, Rp110 trillion of budget is allocated to increase social assistance, in addition we will also refocusing the existing State Budget (APBN) and allocate it to add the social assistance,” the Minister said in a press statement through teleconference, on Tuesday (7/4).
She went on to say that President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has decided to increase cash transfer of the Family Hope Program (PKH) to 10 million beneficiaries.
For Staple Food Card which has 20 million beneficiaries, the cash will be increased to Rp200,000 per month for the next 9 months. Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs also said that Pre-employment Card has budget increase up to Rp20 trillion for 5.6 million beneficiaries. Beneficiaries of additional social assistance for Greater Jakarta will be increased to 4.1 million households in which 2.5 million households are in Jakarta, and other 1.6 million are in Bogor, Depok, Tanggerang, and Bekasi,” she added,
The additional assistance is in form of Cash Transfer Assistance (BLT) and amounting to Rp600,000, the same amount as Pre-employment Card. In addition, the Government also provides free electricity to 24 million households, and 50 percent discount to 7 million households.
“Thirty percent of the social assistance which has a total amount of Rp70 trillion will be used to assist low-income households in underprivileged villages who are not the beneficiaries of the PKH,” Sri said.
The Government, she added, will also postpone loan and interest repayment of Smallholder Business Credit (KUR) for 11.9 million MSMEs including 22,000 Indonesian Migrant Workers, as well as relax loan and interest repayment of Ultra Micro (UMi) and the Fostering of Economy of the Prosperous Family (Mekaar) programs to 11.4 million debtors.
“Therefore, the State Budget must be managed to reach all people. We will also update the database so that target of social assistance program and assistance to SMEs can be met,” she said.
The Minister also stated that the Government is currently studying several initiatives such as incentives for the MSMEs except for those receiving KUR and UMi program, and for farmers in order to increase their purchasing power.
“The initiatives will be included in the Rp110 trillion package as explained by the President. In addition, we also called for coordination with regional governments to re-allocate the Regional Budget (APBD) since Minister of Home Affairs has told me that the amount of some social assistances have not changed and are still based on the initial budget,” she concluded. (FID/EN)
Translated by : Rany Anjany S
Reviewed by: Mia Medyana