House Member Appreciates the Government for the Free Electricity Policy
President Joko Widodo officially announced on Tuesday (31/3/2020) that the Indonesian state-owned electricity company PLN will give free electricity for the next 3 months to 24 million households in the 450-volt ampere (VA) category. Not only that, PLN will also give 50% discounts to 7 million households in the 900 VA category in the same range of time. This is to ease economic shocks suffered by the lower-class income impacted by the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
Responding to this policy, Member of Commission XI of the House Puteri Anetta Komarudin appreciated the government for being responsive by providing stimulus to the lower-class income. This free electricity for the households in the 450 VA category and discounts for the 900 VA category will certainly be like music to the ears of the people. Moreover, it has been common knowledge that since everyone is encouraged to work from home, the consumption of electricity has increased.
“Besides health, Covid-19 outbreak has also disrupted the economy activities significantly. The lower-middle class income households really need to be given this kind of incentives and relief. I hope the stimuli provided by the government will be able to reduce the economic impact,” said Putri via short messages to Parlementaria, Tuesday (31/3/2020).
This Golkar Party politician saw that the Government including the Finance Ministry, until now, has poured 158,2 trillion-rupiah funds allocated as budget for responsive economic policies to handle the Covid-19 outbreak. She also acknowledged various policies such as Economic Stimulus Package Volume I worth 10.3 trillion rupiah, Volume II worth 22.9 trillion rupiah, and the widening of budget deficit to 125 trillion rupiah.
“What the Government including the Finance Ministry needs to do right now is to ensure that the policies be implemented effectively. Every relaxation policy needs to be followed by concrete and binding follow-up actions, such as the preparation of mechanism or technical guidelines that are clear to be used for the implementation of the policies, so that they will not cause a stir in the public”, stated the legislator from the West Java VII constituency.
Furthermore, Puteri also stated that President Jokowi has issued Presidential Instruction Number 4 of 2020 on Refocusing Activities, Budget Reallocation and Procurement of Goods and Services to Speed Up the Handling of Covid-19. Regarding to this, the government needs to pay attention to the continuity of the stimuli issued, because it is likely that the impact of Covid-19 outbreak will probably last long.
“The method is to conduct a routine and gradual evaluations of the policies. It is intended to avoid the stimuli that have been issued not being used up all at once and to adjust them with the responses and the needs of the people for the next few months. Some policies for the informal workers and MSMEs, such as relieving credit and credit installments, raising the amount of Non-Cash Food Aid (BPNT), scraping all requirements for importing several food commodities, accelerating the implementation of the pre-employment cards, and planning Unconditional Cash Transfer (BLT),” she explained.
Saving the economy, added Puteri, is not only the focus of the Indonesian government, but also the focus of all government in the world, as stated in the outcome of the Extraordinary Virtual G20 Leaders’ Summit last week. “One out of four outcomes of the Extraordinary G20 Summit give the focus in saving the economy. The government has to provide economic protection to the workers, businessmen, especially those on the medium scale, as well as all sectors impacted by this situation,” she concluded. (alw/sf)