Business players demand Rp 625t in additional stimulus

first_img“We really hope working capital [will be supplied] for the industry. It is very important,” Apindo chairman Hariyadi Sukamdani said during a virtual discussion on June 5.Despite the previous stimulus packages disbursed by the government, Indonesia’s economy grew by just 2.97 percent in the first quarter, the weakest rate in almost two decades. Meanwhile, large-scale social restrictions have also forced businesses and factories to shut operations.Hariyadi said that due to economic pressures caused by the pandemic, textile companies had furloughed seven out of 10 workers, while food and beverage companies could only pay half of their employees’ wages.The business players association also demanded the stimulus be disbursed over the course of a year, and also requested relaxation of electricity and gas payments to help cut the businesses’ operational costs. Indonesian business players are demanding the government provide an additional stimulus package of Rp 625.1 trillion (US$44.6 billion) in working capital to help them cope with pandemic-induced economic strains, the Indonesian Employers Association (Apindo) has said.The textile industry has requested the largest amount in assistance, Rp 283.1 trillion, while the food and beverage industry and sock manufacturers requested Rp 200 trillion and Rp 99 trillion in assistance, respectively, according to calculations compiled by Apindo.Meanwhile, the hotel and restaurant industry, among the hardest hit by the pandemic, has requested Rp 42.6 trillion, as COVID-19 restrictions have led to steep decline in travel. Indonesia’s Purchasing Managers Index (PMI), a gauge of the nation’s manufacturing activities, hit 28.6 points in May, rebounding from 27.5 the previous month, but still far below the 50-point benchmark that indicates growth, according to market consultancy firm IHS Markit.The government recently announced that the state budget to fight COVID-19 had been increased to Rp 677.2 trillion, up from the Rp 641.17 trillion allocation in May and the initial allocation of Rp 405.1 trillion.About Rp 120.6 trillion will be allocated for tax incentives for larger entities, while Rp 44.57 trillion will be used to provide a stimulus for state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and labor-intensive businesses.Meanwhile, the government also plans to provide a Rp 25 trillion stimulus package that includes airfare and hotel discounts to speed up the recovery of the travel industry.Hariyadi, who also serves as the chairman of the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI), said the existing stimulus plan was not sufficient, as the tourism sector had suffered Rp 70 trillion in estimated losses between January and April this year.More than 2,000 hotels and 8,000 restaurants have been forced to close their operations, Hariyadi stated.Under the current trajectory, the food and beverage industry is projected to bounce back in three months while other industries that rely quite heavily on exports, like the auto, textile and shoe industries, may need at least nine months to recover, according to Apindo.Meanwhile, consumer goods manufacturer PT Unilever Indonesia has managed to buck the declining economic trend by producing highly sought after sanitary products.It initiated a hundredfold increase in the production of hand sanitizer, as demand for the product has soared during the health crisis.By cutting the product development process to six weeks from the usual six months, the firm also introduced a new product line called Sahaja, which includes a disinfectant spray to clean sajadah (prayer mats), in April.“The pace of innovation is very quick, to keep up with what the public needs,” the firm’s head of external affairs, Ribut Tri Purwanti, said during the same online talk.Topics :last_img read more

Men’s basketball preps for road challenge after loss to Cal

first_imgAfter their gut-wrenching loss to Cal, USC men’s basketball travels to the Pac-12 mountain schools to play Utah on Thursday night and Colorado on Sunday.The Utes (11-4, 2-1) are 8-1 this season at the Huntsman Center, taking their only loss to the University of San Francisco on Dec. 22. Despite the loss of incumbent Pac-12 Player of the Year Jakob Poeltl, who was selected in the first round of the NBA draft by the Toronto Raptors, Utah returns an immensely deep roster. Head coach Larry Krystkowiak’s arsenal includes nine players earning at least seven minutes per game, including six players averaging double digits on the season.Yet again, Utah is led by experienced forwards. Junior Kyle Kuzma averages 14.8 points and leads the team with 9.4 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game. Six-foot-10-inch junior David Collette starts in the frontcourt alongside Kuzma. The Utah State transfer debuted as a Ute less than a month ago and scored in double figures in every game this season. He leads the Utes offense in scoring (15.4 points per game) and shooting percentage (.662).In the past, Krystkowiak’s teams have been known for their half-court prowess but slow pace of play. This year, however, the Utes average as many possessions per 40 minutes as the Trojans. This is one reason why the Utes average 80 points per game. Another is that they shoot 58.3 percent from inside the arc — the sixth best in the nation. The Trojans must protect the rim or else Kuzma, Collette and company will have a field day. With sophomore forward Bennie Boatwright out until at least February with a knee sprain, USC will continue to expect large contributions from the forwards — freshman Nick Rakocevic and redshirt senior Charles Buggs. Both alternate in and out of the rotation whenever the other picks up a foul, and each has struggled enormously with foul trouble. Rakocevic averages 6.75 fouls per 40 minutes and Buggs an even worse 7.3. Utah’s bigs will undoubtedly challenge the duo, and they cannot afford to foul cheaply. Sunday’s challenger Colorado (10-6, 0-3) also defends its home court well, going 7-1 thus far this season. The Buffaloes play their Pac-12 home opener Thursday night against UCLA. Colorado plays slower than Utah, and they average six fewer points. The team features a talented backcourt but one that has a meager 1:1 assist-to-turnover ratio. Senior guard Derrick White leads the team in scoring with 15.8 and with 4.1 assists, but he also turns the ball over 2.8 times per game. Fellow senior Xavier Johnson averages 14.7 points per game, and he lit up Arizona’s defense with 26 points on Saturday. Like Utah, Colorado fields a deep roster. Coach Tad Boyle rotates five bench players, and he starts five upperclassmen, including four seniors. USC is a much younger team and will have to play smarter than the experienced Buffs and win the turnover battle.Junior guard Jordan McLaughlin looks forward to the challenge of achieving bounceback victories. “We will prepare like we did this week for the Bay games,” McLaughlin said. “Since the Oregon loss, we’ve had some of our hardest practices of the year. Next week should be fun.”last_img read more