Under the Subnational Competitiveness Webinar Series, “The Inaugural Provincial Dialogue on the Economy and Development 2020 for North Sulawesi” was held on September 25, 2020 by the Asia Competitiveness Institute (ACI). The webinar was attended by senior officeholders from various government agencies from the North Sulawesi province, members of the Indonesian Employers’ Association (APINDO) of North Sulawesi and academics from Sam Ratulangi University.
Watch the video to view highlights from the North Sulawesi Provincial Dialogue and download the full webinar report below.
From a business point of view, Mr. Heinrich states that the pandemic has caused consumers’ purchasing power to shrink and has created increased uncertainty towards the international market. He also argues that if the pandemic lasts longer than expected, more companies might not survive, and more workers might be laid-off.
In response to the challenges caused by the pandemic, Ms. Jenny explains that the government has refocused and reallocated the provincial development budget (APBD). Several social safety net packages such as Family Hope Program (PKH) card, pre-employment card, and staples packages have been distributed to the impacted households. Ms Jenny also emphasizes that the social assistance prioritizes poor and vulnerable groups.
Mr. Oldy, the academic representative, mentioned that the pandemic has escalated the unemployment rate in 2020 by as much as 6.41% compared to the 2019 figure. He also concluded that the pandemic has created a new normal situation characterized by a contact-free economy. This further reinstates that it is important for North Sulawesi to enhance its adaptability by advancing new skills, new knowledge, and new business approaches.