Indonesia Corona Virus Update #29     September 14, 2020

Cumulative number of reported cases: 221,523 (as of September 14)
8841 Deaths
158,405 Recoveries  Rupiah to US$14,974
Jakarta Stock Exchange Index: 5,161.83

Overview-National Positivity Rate Reaches 20%

For the past two weeks Indonesia has had declining per capita test rates while those testing positive have approached one in five (20%) nationwide. (Nationally, Indonesia has yet to achieve the recommended per capita WHO test levels of 1,000 per million). The dangerous implication of this correlation is that many cases are going undetected and that if testing levels increased to where epidemiologists believe they should be, the infection rate would be even higher. The inadequacy of the testing regime makes it difficult for the government to engage in contact tracing and good isolation practices. Experts who are carefully tracking the testing data with official case data report that many cases are probably going undetected and untreated in populous regions such as central and east Java.  The weakness of the data means spikes can occur at any time, and authorities cannot measure the true scale of the pandemic. Although officials have said for months that production of PCR test equipment would increase significantly, only modest gains have been registered.

Travel-Jakarta Imposes Partial Lockdown

With an increase in cases, some hospitals at over capacity, and a dearth of available ICU beds, the Jakarta administration reimposed large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) starting on Monday, but the curbs are more relaxed than when they were first implemented in April. Workplaces in 11 essential sectors – including health, food, energy, communications, finance, logistics and daily needs retail – will be allowed to remain open at 50 percent of capacity, while private companies outside these sectors as well as government offices must implement work-from-home policies and allow no more than 25 percent of their employees to work in the office at the same time.


  • 2021 Budget -The government and the House of Representatives have agreed to widen the state budget deficit to 5.7 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) next year.
  • Poverty Up– The Institute for Development of Economics and Finance (Indef) has predicted that Indonesia’s poverty rate may rise to 10.34 percent in September, 2020 in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Weak Q3 Predicted: Retail sales fell again in July according to Bank Indonesia (BI) data, indicative of a weak recovery in the current quarter. The economy shrank 5.3% in the second quarter, and even though consumer confidence increased in July and August as social restrictions were lifted and informal workers could again earn money, it may not be enough to put things in a positive territory.  This is especially worrisome as Jakarta again locks down and other regions may follow.

(sources: International and Indonesia news media, Bali Update (from, Reformasi Weekly)