Government warned of massive economic crisis triggered by natural disasters

Yogyakarta (ANTARA News) - Potential natural disasters could trigger massive economic crisis in Indonesia in 2017, an academician said.

Unless the government is careful in anticipating natural disasters, economic crisis like that in 1998 is feared to hit the country again, a geography professor of the state Gajahmada University Baiquni said here on Friday.

Baiquni said the economic crisis in 1998 was a result of accumulation of crises and was expedited by natural disasters in various areas in Indonesia.

The natural disasters caused food shortage that easily led to anarchy that would result in economic crisis, he said.

Therefore, he advised the government to be serious in calculating food stocks, looking for alternatives to guarantee food supply and improving distribution system.

In addition, self sufficiency in food supply is important that in the event of harvest failure the government would be ready to quickly release stock, he said.

"It is more important in 2017, as there would be festival of democracy with the elections of regional leaders all over Indonesia that tumultuous social condition is potential.

"The noisy situation should not lead to crisis and protracted conflicts. Good acceleration is necessary," he said.

What is important is the government was not caught off guard as the natural disasters are cyclical, he said.

The government should be quick to anticipate and make the country ready with enough food stocks in 2017, he added.(*)