President Joko Widodo and his entire ranks held a plenary cabinet meeting in 2018. As the initial introduction, the Head of State reminded that in this political year, all ministries and institutions must remain focused on working in improving the economy and reducing inequality.
“I want to repeat, I want to focus on working mainly to improve economic growth, overcome inequality, and reduce poverty,” he said at the State Palace on Wednesday (3/1/2018).
He requested that all achievements that have been achieved by the government during the year 2017 yesterday to be improved in this year. Moreover, the current international trust to Indonesia is on the rise. It was marked by the latest achievement in which Fitch Ratings raised the country’s debt rating from the previous BBB- to BBB with a stable outlook.
“International confidence in us is also getting higher because we see what we have done both in the reform of licensing, regulation, and improvement in the ease of trying,” said the President as quoted in the release of Deputy Secretary of Protocol, Press and Media Secretariat of President Bey Machmudin.
In terms of poverty reduction, President Joko Widodo has just received an encouraging report from the Central Bureau of Statistics (BPS). The poverty rate released by BPS shows that poverty rate in Indonesia is decreasing.
“In September 2017 the number of poor people in Indonesia was 26.58 million people or 10.12%, down 0.52% compared to March 2017, which was 27.77 million people, also decreased compared to September 2015 which reached 11.13 % and 10.70% in September 2016, “he said,
However, he asked his staff to continue to reduce poverty both in rural and urban areas. Therefore, the inflation rate and price stability of basic commodities are asked to continue to be controlled.
“Non-cash food and aid programs that are planned to be distributed at the beginning of the year must also be executed in a timely and targeted manner,” he added.
Preparing to Develop Human Resources
Furthermore, in the year 2018, the Head of State said that the government should start thinking about efforts to increase the human resources (HR) of Indonesia and the expansion of labor-intensive programs. Related to the labor-intensive program, the Minister of Finance reported that the budget for it could be disbursed in this month.
“This fund should be directly executed to support cash for work programs,” he said.
As for the matter of increasing the skills and capabilities of human resources, Indonesia will have a demographic bonus in which the productive age will be much more flooded the world of work. Therefore, training is needed to improve their ability to compete and be absorbed in the industry.
“We must continue to improve the pyramid of our labor qualifications in order to become skilled and trained personnel so that it can be absorbed all by our industries,” he said.
The improvement of these skills, according to the President, must be connected and in accordance with the needs of our industry today. Equally important, the improvement of human resource skills should not forget the existing workforce where the majority come from elementary and junior high school.
“We must continue to upgrade and improve the competence, for example through the new job training, apprenticeship and certification program that we started but we need to expand according to the needs of our industry,” said President.
Ending the introduction to the cabinet meeting, President Joko Widodo instructed his staff to move quickly to execute planned programs and work activities. All the old habits that are self-centered and monotonous are asked to be abandoned.
“We make the year 2018 is really a work that starts from the beginning so we expect once again poverty, inequality, and underdevelopment we can finish,” he said.