Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung accompanied by Team Leader National Victory Erick Thohir listened to directions from President Joko Widodo after meeting Prabowo Subianto, in Senayan, Jakarta, Saturday (07/13) morning - Photo by President Office

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – Indonesia’ President Joko Widodo laid out Indonesian Vision for his second five-year term, which will see the government focus on economic growth and building up the quality of human resources in the Southeast Asia biggest economy.

Widodo delivered his first speech on Sunday (07/14) since being re-elected and outlined steps to make the country a more “productive and competitive” nation amid rapid and unpredictable changes globally.

Firstly, he said that the government will continue to develope infrastructure, his signature program in the first five-year tenure and seek to link already-built infrastructure to economic centers.

“In the future, we will continue to do it faster and infrastructure like toll roads, train lines, seaports, and airports will be connected to production centers, small industrial estates, and special economic zones and tourism zones. That’s our orientation and we must focus on that,” he shouted to his supporters at Sentul, West Java, on Sunday (07/14).

Second, he said the government will change the flagship program to human resource development, a promise he made when campaigning ahead of the presidential elections in April. He stated, “We want to put our priority on human resources development. Human resources development will be key to Indonesia’s future.”

He adds that a national talent management bodies will be set up and support for highly-talented Indonesian diaspora will be provided. To that, Widodo said the program will need to address various issues like impaired growth and development of children and the high maternal mortality rate, as well as improve the quality of education.

Third, he stressed the importance of investment for job creation. He wants his country to be a comfortable place for investors to invest. Therefore, what inhibits investment, he said, must all be trimmed, both licenses that are slow, complicated, especially if there are wild levies. He promised to eliminate all investment barriers as a key to opening jobs.

“All obstacles hindering investment, whether slow and complicated licensing processes or illegal fees, will be eliminated. There will be no more obstacles to investment as that would be key to generate as many jobs as possible,” he said to a rousing response from around 30,000 people at the center.

Despite improvements in Indonesia’ ranking on the World Bank’ ease of doing business index, Widodo has conceded there remain too many obstacles to starting a business. In May, he stated that his government had cut to 58 from 259 the number of permits required for power plant investment, but he wants the figure cut to five.

Fourth, Widodo who will be inaugurated on Oct 20 as Indonesia’s seventh president, said he is also committed to bureaucratic reforms to improve public services, a campaign platform of his since he first entered politics 15 years ago.

He planned to reform the bureaucracy so that the institution would be simpler, quickly give permission and promised to dissolve institutions that were not useful and problematic.

“I will check and control (the process) on my own. If I see inefficiencies and ineffectiveness, I will solve them and fire the officials,” said the former Jakarta governor, noting that his government will seek brave ministers.

“If there are useless and troubled institutions, I will certainly dissolve them,” he urged.

Widodo has made progress in bureaucratic reform in some areas – such as tax collection and business permits – but Indonesia still suffers from stiflingly complicated regulations and red tape over areas such as land permits and suffers from endemic corruption. Indonesia’s “negative investment list” also means that not all sectors of the economy are accessible to foreign investors.

This will be part of Widodo’ bureaucratic reform agenda in his second term, where he will continue to aim to increase the ease of doing business in Indonesia – Indonesia currently ranks 73rd globally according to the World Bank annual ratings.

Moreover, local and national regulations often overlap, making it difficult for companies to maneuver through a quagmire of bureaucracy. The erratic regulatory environment and a failure to tackle bureaucratic and legal reform during this his first term, plus poor legal certainty and ideological economic nationalism, has also meant a continuation of Indonesia’ weak competitiveness in its investment climate and limited growth.

Fifth, he said, the entire Indonesian development plan in the future will be based on the use of a focused and well-targeted state revenue and expenditure budget.

“We must guarantee the use of a focused and targeted state budget. Every rupiah that comes out, we have to make sure we have economic benefits, provide benefits for the people, improve welfare for the community,” said president.

The government, he adds, will work to keep inflation steady, keep fiscal health strong by increasing state revenue through aggressive tax collection, and reduce unproductive state expenditure.

Bank Indonesia has been focused on keeping the economy stable, increasing interest rates six times last year in response to United States Federal Reserve rate hikes, which was something admirable before an election year. Economic stability is likely to continue under the central bank’s current leadership.

While, elected vice president Ma’ruf Amin, invited all people to reunite and strengthen each other to create a just, prosperous and prosperous nation. He likens the nation to buildings that mutually reinforce Indonesian buildings.

Widodo’ first formal speech after winning his re-election bid was delivered just one day after he met his rival, defeated presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto, at Jakarta’s mass rapid transit during which both shook hands and hugged each other warmly. The meeting was their first since the bitterly contested presidential election.

During their encounter on Saturday, both leaders urged supporters from both camps to unite for the sake of the nation. In remarks aimed at addressing his own supporters, Subianto said all are “red and white” – the colors of the national flag – meaning that both sides should work together.

Written by Lexy Nantu, Email: lexy@theinsiderstories.com