Overview- Indonesia in Modified Lockdown
The COVID-19 outbreak that began at the end of June has forced the government to force partial lockdowns in cities and towns across Java and Bali. Week-to week new cases soared 44% hitting 38,391 on July 8. Most office workers are now working remotely except those in sectors deemed “critical” of essential”. Hospitals are overloaded with new COVID-19 patients and oxygen supplies. Many have had to set up tents to accommodate patients.
Slated to end July 20 but likely to be extended are the following restrictions:
- 100% work from home except essential and critical sectors
- For essential sectors: 50% maximum in office with health protocols (distancing/masks) For critical sectors: 100% can be in office with health protocols.
- Essential sectors: finance/banking, capital markets and payment systems, information and communications technology, non-quarantine hotels, and export-oriented industries
- Critical sectors: energy, health, security, logistics/transportation, food/staples and beverage, petrochemicals, cement, disaster management, constructions, national strategic projects, electricity, and water transmission
- Supermarkets and traditional markets cannot remain open past 8:00 pm and are limited to 50% capacity.
- All educational activities must be carried out only online.
- Public transport (taxi, train, bus, rental) limited to 70% with strict health protocols.
- Passengers on domestic flights must show a vaccine card (at least one dose) and evidence of a PCR test.
- The Tourism Minister has delayed Bali’s July re-opening until later in August but will be watching COVID levels carefully.
Facilities temporarily closed are:
- Shopping malls, trade centers, movie theaters
- Art/cultural, performances/concerts, sports and social activities
- Public areas, parks and tourist attractions
- Places of worship (mosques, churches, prayer rooms)
- Restaurants: open only for take away or delivery
Travel-Vaccines Now Required
Foreigners arriving in Indonesia are now required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Using a vaccination standard that is quickly becoming the norm globally, the Indonesian Government’s COVID-19 Czar, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, has announced the new, stricter requirement for foreign nationals to enter the Republic of Indonesia. Quoted by the State News Agency Antara on Tuesday, 06 July 2021, Luhut said: “All foreigners coming to Indonesia must show a vaccine card. These people must have undergone (before arriving in Indonesia) the two injections necessary for full COVID immunization. No one can come to Indonesia before receiving both injections.
Indonesia has not yet opened access for visa-on-arrival and visa-free during the COVID-19 pandemic, except for foreigners with essential purposes such as businesses, works, diplomatic or humanitarian reasons. Bali is now requiring negative PCR tests for all domestic travelers.
Visit Indonesian Immigration (https://www.imigrasi.go.id) and the Indonesian Embassy (https://kemlu.go.id/washington/en) for updated visa and entry requirements as regulations may change frequently.
- Countries/territories that prohibit passengers/flights departing from Indonesia due to Covid-19: Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan, Oman, UAE, EU
- Airplane Passengers from Indonesia Are Prohibited from Entering the United Arab Emirates (UAE)
- Indonesians applying for visas to visit the US are receiving November interview dates due to pandemic-related restrictions at the US Embassy.
- World Bank Downgrades Indonesia: Indonesia is back to low-middle-income country according to World Bank, losing its prized upper middle-income status after just a year, as Southeast Asia’s biggest coronavirus outbreak reverses gains in poverty and employment. The World Bank downgraded Indonesia to lower-middle income status as of July 1, with a per capita gross national income of $3,870. The country entered upper-middle income status last year with a per capita GNI of $4,050, its first in that band since ranking in 1988.
- Slippage into Poverty: The pandemic had pulled more than 2.75 million Indonesians below the poverty line as of last September. Government data shows the country’s efforts to keep the poverty rate in single digits over the past three years fell apart as the rate rose to 10.19% from 9.22% a year ago. The number of unemployed rose to 8.75 million by February, with 1.6 million job losses due to the pandemic.
- Quarter 2 Growth May Still be High: Minister of Finance Sri Mulyani Indrawati is optimistic that the Indonesian economy can still grow in the range of 7 percent in the second quarter of 2021, even though the new variant of Covid-19 began to spread in mid-June 2021. This 7% growth could be created because it was driven by economic growth in April-May 2021. However, this projection is indeed down from the previous projection of 8 percent. For full year growth, the Indonesian government has acknowledged that the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth will likely fall below the initial target of 4.5% to 5.3% for this year following the enactment of emergency public activity restrictions (PPKM Darurat) end will end in the range of 3.7%-4.5%.
US Ships Moderna Vaccines: The United States will ship 4 million doses of Moderna Inc’s COVID-19 vaccine to Indonesia as it battles a coronavirus outbreak, the U.S. national security adviser told the Indonesian foreign minister on Friday. In a call with Retno Marsudi, Jake Sullivan said the doses would be shipped via the COVAX global vaccine sharing program “as soon as possible,” a White House statement said.
AICC Meets With Chairman of BKPM
(l-r) Wayne Forrest, Minister Lahadahlia, Consul General Arifi Saiman
AICC President, Wayne Forrest, met with Hon. Bahlil Lahadalia, Chairman of BKPM (Investment Coordinating Board). Lhadalia explained BKPM’s functions within the newly-created Ministry of Investment. The Chairman promoted the Batang Industrial Estate, one hour from Semarang port by toll road, as a preferred site for US investment. The advantages:
- Batang is a new concept to ease investment process, where investors did not have to buy lands avoiding entirely any land acquisition/permit problems.
- Investors are required to make long-term lease with SOEs (State-Owned Enterprises owned by the government, free from any dispute.
- The Indonesian government will waive the charges for five years of land lease by foreign investors in this zone.
· Since 90% of medical supplies are imported, GOI is particularly interested in US companies willing to relocate manufacturing.
· The new Ministry of Investment will take over the granting of import duty exemptions from the Ministry of Finance.
· Nickel down-streaming: electric batteries and other products. Indonesia will sell nickel locally at below world market prices.
(sources: International and Indonesia news media, Bali Update (from balidiscovery.com), Reformasi Weekly, US Embassy website)