"We are optimistic that the funds provided by the government would not be used up for consumption but instead utilized as capital to develop businesses," Deputy Assistant for the Capital Market and Financial Institutions of the Coordinating Ministry of Economic Affairs Gede Edy Prasetya noted during an online discussion pertaining to the pre-employment card in Jakarta on Tuesday.
A monthly incentive of Rp600 thousand is available to beneficiaries through the pre-employment card for a period of four months.
Despite the amount not being large, Prasetya believes that several businesses can be started with little capital.
Prasetya noted that the government is prepared to help with capital, including access to formal financial institutions, to increase the scale of businesses.
"We can encourage them to access micro-credit and then move up to small and commercial," he remarked.
In addition to venture capital, he said, the incentives received could also be set aside for meeting other requirements, for instance, saving, which is viewed as being beneficial, especially while facing the COVID-19 pandemic.
"If people can access formal financial institutions, they can save money. Saving has several uses, especially during this pandemic. Saving is the main thing," he emphasized.
Prasetya opined that by saving, funds raised for development are projected to rise, so that it can reduce the lending rates.
The realization of the micro credit program (KUR) in 2019 had reached Rp139.5 trillion, or 99.6 percent of the targeted Rp140 trillion.
This year, the government is targeting the KUR ceiling to reach Rp190 trillion, with credit interest rates falling to six percent per year.
Some 1.4 million people registered to receive funding assistance under the so-called Pre-employment Card Program newly launched by the government on Saturday (Apr 11).
"We can witness this enthusiasm as a reflection of the high public expectations from the Pre-employment Card Program," Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartarto noted.
Since its launch on March 20, 2020, the official site www.prakerja.go.id received 2.4 million unique visitors. On Saturday, more than 1.1 million visitors were recorded when the first phase of registration was opened.
Airlangga expounded that the Pre-employment Card program focused on workers, job seekers, and self-employed people engaged in small and micro businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The government has also conducted data collection through employment services, tourism, cooperatives, and SMEs, industry, and trade, as well as in sectors affected by the reduction of community mobility, such as transportation and retail.
The program prioritized laid-off workers and those engaged in micro and small businesses that had lost their jobs.
Furthermore, over 900 online trainings of various types and levels, ranging from beginner to advanced levels, will be available on eight digital platforms, mostly practical, simple training types that could generate income.
The training guides will comprise Introduction to Information Technology for Beginners, Accounting for Beginners, Young Da'i Training, Becoming a Reliable MC, Coffee Shop Management, Practical English for Tourism Guides, Basic Housekeeping Skills, and Learning to Become a Telemarketer. Related news: Laid-off workers to benefit from Pre-Employment Card Program
Related news: Government to step up capacity of pre-employment card participants
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