Highlights in the media today: PSBB still not effective in containing virus, Local administrations should intervene to contain outbreak in industrial areas, GDP to contract first time since 1998.
The number of confirmed cases continues to rise in Jakarta and South Tangerang, despite the reinstatement of large-scale social restrictions (PSBB).
According to Jakarta Transportation Office Head Syafrin Liputo, the traffic volume in Jakarta had decreased about 5.23%-19.28% from the volume recorded during the transitional PSBB. A similar trend was also seen in South Tangerang, which had seen a drop in the number of KRL passengers during the rush hour, according to Rawa Buntu Station Master Iskandar.
However, the restriction on movements has not been able to slow down the infection rate. On average, Jakarta has confirmed 900-1,000 new cases every day since Saturday (September 19).
On Monday (September 21), the total number of cases in Jakarta reached 62,886, 1,000 more than the figure recorded on Sunday (September 20). Similarly, the number of COVID-19 patients in South Tangerang increased from 91 people on September 14 to 137 people on September 22.
As of September 23 15:45 (GMT+7), Indonesia had confirmed 257,388 COVID-19 cases, with 187,958 recoveries and 9,977 deaths. In the past 24 hours, the government confirmed a record-high daily number of 4,465 new cases.
The implementation of strict health protocols by companies has not been effective in containing the virus in industrial areas. Adhering to the health protocols in the workplace is not enough, as workers also spend a lot of time doing activities outside of their work, which puts them at risk of contracting the virus and infecting their co-workers.
Local administrations need to intervene and ensure that people follow the health protocols at all times, Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin) Manpower and Industrial Relations Deputy Chairman Anton J. Supit said.
Bekasi Regency COVID-19 Task Force spokesperson Alamsyah said that most of the cases in industrial areas were imported cases from asymptomatic individuals, who then caused local transmission in the company. According to Bekasi Regency COVID-19 Task Force data, the regency has recorded 869 COVID-19 cases from 46 companies.
Indonesia’s annual gross domestic product (GDP) is set to contract for the first time since the 1998 Asian financial crisis.
Finance Minister Sri Mulyani said that the government had revised its GDP outlook down to an annual contraction of between 0.6% and 1.7%, as the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic had taken a significant toll on consumption and business investment.
Sri told reporters on Tuesday (September 22) that several indicators of economic activity showed that the economic recovery was still at a very early stage and remained very fragile. The government expects consumption, which accounts for more than half of its GDP, to remain weak and to contract by between 1% and 2.1%.
It also expects investment to contract by between 4.4% and 5.6%. Indonesia’s exports are expected to contract by between 5.5% and 9% and imports by between 11.7% and 17.2% amid slowing global trade. Government spending would be the only component in GDP to grow this year, between 0.6% and 4.8%, as the government ramped up spending to provide economic relief, Sri added.
Kompas.com, September 23, 2020, Indonesia confirms 257,388 COVID-19 cases
Kompas, September 23, 2020, p.12, Number of positive cases remain high
Kompas, September 23, 2020, p.11, Intervention reduces risk in industrial areas
The Jakarta Post, September 23, 2020, p.1, GDP to contract for first time since 1998