The Slippery Slope of the COVID-19 Restriction Relaxation

Summary

  • The relaxation of social restrictions has rejuvenated the Indonesian economy, but, in return, it significantly increases the country’s COVID-19 positivity rate. It hits 12 percent, far above the safe limits recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) for relaxing any virus-related restriction.
  • The government expects economic growth to reach at least zero percent in the third quarter so that the economy will not go into recession. Besides, the new COVID-19 mitigation committee led by Erick Thohir is preparing several new policies that will focus on both health and economic affairs.
  • Many domestic-policy observers see that the new committee has no significant objective. They criticize it for having no different structure compared to the usual coordination meeting. However, the officials of the committee reportedly were all aware that any program to boost the economy would not work as expected unless the government curbed the pandemic.

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