BPJS Kesehatan’s debt arrears to partners unsolvedMonday, 07 Jan 2019
Media Indonesia, headline
The new format of the presidential and vice-presidential candidates debate slated for Jan. 17 will not make a difference in the way of campaigning, General Elections Commissions (KPU) commissioner Pramono Ubaid Tanthowi says. The KPU is changing the rules of game for the upcoming debate, giving no more room for a spontaneous question and answer session. Instead, it will offer candidates an open question a week in advance. Pramono has said that the new format would promote a healthier democracy because it would change the public’s expectations of candidates. He believes the public will expect long and detailed answers from each candidate, rather than short, trivial but unclear statements just to win their sympathy during the debate.
Voters wait for programs, not promises
A recent Kompas survey found that the public asked presidential and vice-presidential candidates for more exposure of their platforms and programs. Nearly 34 percent of 501 respondents surveyed on Jan. 3-4 said they were exposed to information related to the candidates’ programs, while the majority to only general information surrounding the candidates. Fifty-nine percent said they did not know about the incumbent Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s programs. The figure reached 68.46 percent when respondents were asked about their knowledge of Prabowo Subianto’s programs.
China’s rise met with distrust, survey says
The Jakarta Post, Headline
Southeast Asians see Chinese economic and political preeminence in Asia as inevitable, but they are not convinced that Beijing will use its newfound powers for the benefit of global peace and prosperity, a survey from Singapore-based ASEAN Studies Center shows. Some 75 percent of respondents believe China is preparing for a global leadership role in response to the United States’ deteriorating engagement in global politics. Around 65.9 percent of respondents say they have confidence that Japan will do the right thing instead. The survey also discovered ambivalent views about China’s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative; 47 percent of respondents think it will pull ASEAN states closer to China’s orbit, 30.7 percent think it’s too early to conclude and 15.7 percent think the initiative will neither succeed nor benefit local communities.
BPJS Kesehatan’s debt arrears to partners unsolved
Koran Tempo; Republika, p.1
The cash flow problem of the Health Care and Social Security Agency (BPJS Kesehatan) will persist although the government has offered a helping hand by setting up credit schemes with several state-owned banks. Some hospitals were reportedly unable to reimburse their claims using the scheme. According to Indonesian Private Hospital Association (ARSSI) secretary-general Ichsan Hanafi, unstandardized financial management on the part of the BPJS Kesehatan has delayed the process. The agency has come under criticism for unilaterally revoking partnerships with a number of hospitals just before the deal would take effect in early 2019. The Government Development Finance Comptroller (BPKP) found that the agency was Rp 1.72 trillion (US$121.98 million) in debt as of November 2018.
RI braces for ‘volcano season’
Safety concerns are looming due to an upsurge of volcanic activity across the country. After the tsunami and continuous eruptions of Mt. Anak Krakatau in Sunda Strait last year, the government has alerted people living surrounding Mt. Merapi in the border between Yogyakarta and Central Java. The volcano has erupted twice since Saturday, spewing lava and materials rich in minerals with heavy smoke towards the Gendol River in Yogyakarta. Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry geology department head Rudy Suhendar said at least 19 temblors had been recorded ever since. At the same time, the Volcanology and Geological Disaster Mitigation Center (PVMBG) maintained its alert status for Mt. Anak Krakatau after recording 13 eruptions on Sunday.
The January effect is expected to make a comeback and have a positive impact on the Jakarta Composite Index (JCI), the main price indicator of the Indonesian Stock Exchange (IDX).
At the end of last week, the JCI gained 1.29 percent to close at 6,274.54 from the end of 2018. It recorded an upward trend in the first three days of trading this year, supported by foreign buys at Rp 789 billion.
The JCI’s performance at the beginning of the year was the second best in Asia-Pacific, falling short only of the Philippines’ PSEi index, which gained 3.95 percent year-to-date. This is an anomaly because the majority of indices in the region are on a downward trend.
SOEs need fresh capital injection
Investor Daily, Headline
State-owned enterprises, which are responsible for building infrastructure projects, need fresh capital injection in order to maintain their cash flow and to minimize risk.
The additional capital is needed to regain investors’ trust in the state companies in charge of infrastructure development following a fall in their stock prices recently due to a cash flow mismatch, despite improvement in their financial performances.
In the 2019 state budget, the government has allocated Rp17.8 trillion for capital injection. Of the total, Rp 800 billion will be given to PT Sarana Multigriya Finansial (SMF), Rp 7 trillion to PT Hutama Karya, and Rp 10 trillion to PT Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN).
Special package for local property market
The government will reduce tax on luxurious property sales in order to revive the property market in the country.
As part of the plan, the threshold price of houses and apartments subject to the 20 percent luxury tax (PPnBM) will be raised to Rp 30 billion.
According to Finance Ministry Regulation No. 35/2017, the 20 percent luxury tax will be imposed on non-strata title houses and town houses with a price of Rp 20 billion or more. It will also be imposed on strata title town houses, apartments and condominiums costing Rp 10 billion or more.
The new regulation revision will increase the threshold from Rp 20 billion to Rp 30 billion. It means that, properties with price tags below Rp 30 billion will be exempt from the 20 percent luxury tax.
Progress in special economic zones slow
Bisnis Indonesia, p. 3
Development in 12 special economic zones (KEK) is slow, as shown by low manpower absorption and investment realization in the areas.
According to KEK data obtained by Bisnis, only six out of 12 projects will operate in 2019 as initially scheduled. The development of the 12 KEKs is included in the medium-term development plan (RPJMN) of President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s administration. The 12 KEKs were scheduled to begin operations this year.
Moreover, the investment realization in the 12 projects only reached Rp 17.7 trillion as of November 2018 from a commitment of Rp 104.54 trillion. Manpower absorption only reached 10,700 people as of November 2018 from the estimated 695,783.