President seeks breakthroughs to handle COVID-19 pressure

President seeks breakthroughs to handle COVID-19 pressure

President Joko Widodo (in white shirt) opened the working meeting of the Trade Ministry 2020 at the State palace in Jakarta, on Wednesday (March 4, 2020). ANTARA/Indra Arief/aa.

Do nOt think that when the demand, supply, and production are disrupted, we do not respond to the issue and consider the situation ordinary.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has instructed ministries and non-ministerial government institutions to adopt innovative policies that can create breakthroughs amid the challenging economic situation owing to the coronavirus outbreak.

While opening a working meeting of the Trade Ministry at the State Palace in Jakarta on Wednesday, the president drew attention to the emergence of coronavirus that has made the economic situation more challenging, coupled with the ongoing US-China trade war.

He noted that ministries and non-ministerial government institutions must respond to the economic situation that is no longer normal through responsive policies.

The policies are deemed necessary to curtail the impact of coronavirus on each economic sector, including exports, imports, and production, he emphasized.

"The situation is very different due to the coronavirus. I have just reminded (all sides) that the coronavirus had disrupted demand, supply, and production. The demand includes consumption and investment," he stated.

"Do not think that when the demand, supply, and production are disrupted, we do not respond to the issue and consider the situation ordinary," he noted.

The president called on ministries to relax licensing procedures and streamline bureaucratic processes that hinder economic activities.

Jokowi had ordered the Trade Ministry to simplify the import licensing procedure to secure domestic stocks. As such, domestic supplies will suffice, and prices in the market will be stable.

"I want the working meeting today to focus on the issue only. Do not speak about something else. Once again the supply of goods must be sufficient. We will soon enter the fasting month of Ramadhan. Be careful about it," he stated.

The president pointed to both Bank Indonesia (BI) and the Financial Service Authority (OJK) having relaxed their policies to facilitate economic recovery following the coronavirus outbreak.

The head of state expressed hope that both ministries and non-ministerial government institutions would take a cue from BI and OJK and follow suit.

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