The public hostility towards Jokowi's biggest 'big bang' reform

Economic growth, job creation possible only with industrial peace and fair distribution of gains

People protesting against the Indonesian government's omnibus law in Jakarta on Thursday. If unions continue to hold protests to demand higher wages and more generous welfare benefits when the country is in a coronavirus-induced recession, then their action will be counterproductive, says the writer. PHOTO: REUTERS
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It is unfortunate that most headline stories about the newly passed Omnibus Law on Job Creation have singled out the most controversial of the thousands of provisions in its 905 pages, only to contribute to the public hostility towards what should be lauded as the most comprehensive "big bang" economic reform ever launched.

More than 90 per cent of the law is designed to stimulate domestic and foreign investment by removing bureaucratic inefficiencies and excessive licensing requirements as well as opaque, overlapping and contradictory regulations that have long hindered competitiveness.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on October 11, 2020, with the headline The public hostility towards Jokowi's biggest 'big bang' reform. Subscribe