Current affairs

Increased poverty and crime rates in Indonesia due to the Corona pandemic【negative economic impact of physical movement restrictions】


Movement Restrictions increase the number of poor people

According to Indonesia's Central Statistics Agency BPS (Badan Pusat Statistik), due to the spread of the new coronavirus epidemic, the poverty rate in March 2020 (Monthly consumption of Rp410,670 of which Rp302,022 for food and Rp108,648 or less for other expenses.) was 9.78%.

The number of people living below the poverty line, up from 9.22% in September 2019, was said to be 26.42 million as of March, with the increase in the number of people living in poverty as a result of economic activity being hampered by restrictions on movement under the PSBB (large scale social restrictions).

Central Statistics Agency of Indonesia

The magnitude of the negative impact of physical movement restrictions on the economy has been proven by the corona pandemic.

Despite the fact that nearly 200 new cases of the new coronavirus have been confirmed in Tokyo every day in Japan, the government is still trying to force the Go To campaign of discounted travel costs (Tokyo residents were excluded from the program earlier) to stimulate demand for domestic tourism because of the growing number of bankruptcies and unemployment in the tourism industry, which was already supporting a large number of jobs in the countryside.

Recently on 14 July, the Jakarta Provincial Department of Transport abolished the check for entry/exit permits (SIKM = Surat Izin Keluar Masuk), a condition for entering and leaving the provincial border, and by simplifying the method of accessing a system called the Corona Likelihood Metric (CLM) from JAKI, a state-created mobile application for mobile phones, to enter personal information and respond to a self-assessment form.

I think this is good news for the domestic travel tourism sector, as the restrictions on interstate travel in the country have been substantially eased.

Many of Indonesia's poor are said to be engaged in the informal economy (Sektor Informal), a sector of the economy that is not represented in GDP statistics, such as the underground economy and untaxed cash labor, and due to the instability of cash income, it is estimated to have been most affected by the increase in the prices of nine daily necessities sumbako (Sembilan Bahan Pokok) (1.78% rice, 5.53% poultry, 7.06% cooking oil, 13.35% sugar and 11.1% eggs) during the period September 2019 to March 2020.

Crime rates rise as poverty rates rise

Indonesia's crime rate is not as high as my impression, and its murder rate is 163rd out of 174 countries (Japan: 168th, Thailand: 82nd, Philippines: 42nd), which makes it a safe country compared to other Southeast Asian countries, but if you live in Indonesia for a few years, you will be familiar with pickpocketing, left-behind theft, taxi robbery, etc.

I was robbed by a group of people at the bus stop off the footbridge in front of Plaza Indonesia more than 20 years ago.

Dangerous memories in Indonesia

At the time, Indonesia was in the midst of a currency crisis (Krisis Moneter), with rapid inflation, private companies going bankrupt and banks merging in large numbers, and a high crime rate as the number of unemployed (6.3% unemployment rate in 1999) increased and the poverty level spread.

Indonesia's history of recession

As the number of people working from home has increased in Japan during the corona pandemic, news of domestic violence and child abuse has increased, and the rhythm of going to work in the morning and coming home at night in normal times has been broken.

The root cause of this is the emotional entanglement caused by the family members seeing each other's dislikes, but isn't the issue of money the root cause?

In Indonesia, the number of employees laid off PHK (Pemutusan Hubungan Kerja) is said to have reached 7 million by April, and as the number of unemployed workers increases, the number of poor people increases, resulting in a vicious cycle of increased crime, with the number of crimes in the second week of July rising by 10.37% from the first week.

The most common type of crime is drug-related, followed by burglary, embezzlement, theft of four-wheeled and two-wheeled vehicles, and robbery.

It may come as a surprise that there are so many drug-related deaths in Indonesia, but the country is one of the world's most drug-polluted areas, the world's largest producer of Ekstasi (synthetic drug ecstasy), the world's largest distributor of Ganja (cannabis), and the world's largest distributor of marijuana (cannabis).

Currently 60% of prison inmates are Narkoba-related, and there is a crisis with 15,000 Narkoba-related deaths each year.

Awareness-raising activities to combat drugs

There have been a lot of attempted scams online on WhatsApp and over the phone lately, and there was a period of time when I received scam calls all day long trying to withdraw the balance from my GoPay account, which resulted in my account being frozen for a time.

Gojek Scam Call.

1. Call claiming to be from Gojek headquarters
2. They ask me how to use the app
3. They say to transfer 1.5juta in return for answering a questionnaire
4. They ask me to send an OTP by SMS to confirm (bluff).

5.Asking for a 6-digit PIN to transfer 1.5juta

Beware of money-bait scams when the economy turns sour.

GoJek connects online ojeks (motorbike taxis) that used to be idle on street corners and outsources time-consuming, costly, and unproductive tasks such as transportation and delivery to them with the simple operation of a smartphone, improving operational efficiency and redistributing wealth all at once.

It is a revolutionary service that has contributed to both the economy and society by constructing a new flow of income redistribution through information technology and at the same time reducing the crime rate by lowering the unemployment rate.

Younger and older users with low information literacy are still limited to a maximum balance of Rp. 2,000,000 (Rp. 5,000,000 after upgrade) as they are more vulnerable to fraud through illegal access.