PSBB Eased in Jakarta, ‘Green Lane’ Between Singapore & Indonesia, More 10% Tech VAT, Jokowi on Omnibus Hoaxes
Oct 13, 2020 | AmCham Indonesia
Cases Slow, ‘Transitional’ PSBB Returns to Jakarta
The COVID-19 rate in Jakarta has started to stabilize since the strict large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) were imposed on Sept 13. As a result, the Jakarta government will re-implement so-called transitional PSBB so more businesses can operate again. The transitional period is in effect from October 12-25.
Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan said the decision was taken in consultation with the central government and was based on case reports, daily deaths, trends in the number of active cases, and the occupancy levels of COVID-19 referral hospitals.
Cases in offices have declined during the past week. In order to maintain this, a new policy for the transition period states that data collection on visitors and employees be stepped up both manually and applications that collaborate with the government. The data collection serves to facilitate contact tracing of positive cases. The Jakarta government will also increase the capacity of testing activities, isolation and treatment efforts at hospitals.
Anies said that if an infected cluster is found in a workplace, it is mandatory to close the workplace for three days to disinfect. Every business is also required to prepare a COVID-19 safety plan.
Joint Statement: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Indonesia, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Singapore
Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia, Her Excellency Retno L.P. Marsudi spoke with Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Singapore, His Excellency Dr Vivian Balakrishnan via telephone. The Ministers reaffirmed the excellent and longstanding relations between Singapore and Indonesia. They recalled their discussion in August 2020 on the importance of strengthening mutually-beneficial cooperation in overcoming common challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, including the resumption of essential travel while safeguarding public health and safety in both countries.
In this context, the Ministers welcomed the conclusion of the negotiations between the Government of the Republic of Indonesia and the Government of the Republic of Singapore on the establishment of a Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL) between Singapore and Indonesia. The RGL will also be referred to by Indonesia as the Travel Corridor Arrangement (TCA).
The RGL/TCA will enable cross-border travel for essential business and official purposes to resume between both countries. The eligible applicants for the RGL/TCA are Indonesian citizens as well as Singapore citizens and residents. These travelers will have to abide by the COVID-19 prevention and public health measures mutually agreed by both countries, including pre-departure and post-arrival COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) swab tests from mutually recognized health institutions.
Applications for the RGL/TCA will open on 26 October 2020 and travel will commence soon after. Operational details of the RGL/TCA including the procedural requirements, health protocols, and application process will be announced in due course.
Jokowi Prioritizes COVID-19 Handling in 12 Regions with More than 1,000 Cases
For the next two weeks, President Joko Widodo has asked his staff to prioritize handling COVID-19 cases in 12 districts/cities that have active cases of more than 1,000 people. The 12 include Ambon, Padang, Pekanbaru, Jayapura, Bekasi Regency, Bogor, Depok, and DKI Jakarta.
As of Oct 11, the number of positive COVID-19 cases in Indonesia was 333,449, with the 12 accounting for 30 percent of total active cases nationally.
The President also asked his staff to prioritize handling the COVID-19 virus in 10 provinces: West Java, Central Java, East Java, North Sumatra, South Kalimantan, South Sulawesi, Papua, Bali, Aceh and DKI Jakarta.
The Indonesian Government has applied value added tax (VAT) to eight foreign technology companies. Starting Nov 1, the companies must pay VAT from their digital products and services sold in Indonesia. They are:
Alibaba Cloud (Singapore) Pte Ltd
Microsoft Regional Sales Pte Ltd
UCWeb Singapore Pte Ltd
To The New Singapore Pte Ltd
Coda Payments Pte Ltd
In April, the government regulated digital tax for global technology companies through lieu of law Number 1 Year 2020 concerning Financial Policy in To Deal with the COVID-19. The rules are contained in article 6 of the new bill, which states the government will collect taxes from trading activities through electronic systems by foreign companies who meet the provisions of a significant economic presence.
Moores Rowland Indonesia is committed to helping to improve access to education for young people, including those from disadvantaged backgrounds. It has collaborated with Yayasan Cahaya Impian Masa Depan (CIMD Foundation) in Bali for more than 10 years. CIMD helps disabled and under-privileged children with programs that focus on education and health.
Moores Rowland’s office in Bali has been sponsoring the CIMD Foundation on a yearly basis.
It has also helped create an education-to-employment program for young people interested in studying accounting and/or tax through its foster parents program. The program's purpose is for beneficiaries to participate in the Moores Rowland internship program and eventually become a full-time staff member of the firm.
President Joko Widodo has said the government and the House of Representatives (DPR) made the Omnibus Job Creation Law to improve the welfare of society, and that the waves of demonstrations against the law were a result of misinformation and hoaxes.
To clarify, he provided five explanation points about labor in the Law. He reassured that the Provincial Minimum Wage (UMP), Regency/City Minimum Wage (UMK), and Provincial Sectoral Minimum Wage (UMSP) regulations would still exist, and that there is no change in the wage system with the Law. The minimum wage will still be calculated based on workers’ time and performance.
He also denied that all leave for workers was abolished, and affirmed that workers’ rights to leave is guaranteed. He also said the claim that workers will not receive compensation for leave is false.
He also guaranteed the Law would not allow companies to terminate employment or perform unilateral layoffs. He also said social security for workers would not be lost.
At least five governors and two Regional People’s Representative Assembly (DPRD) Chairmen have sided with demonstrators calling for the rejection of the Omnibus Job Creation Law by expressing their own disagreement with the Law.
The officials have urged President Joko Widodo to immediately issue a Government Regulation in Lieu of Law (Perppu) to revoke the ratification of the Omnibus Job Creation Law.
The President has said the protests were motivated by misinformation and fake news on social media. He reminded the country that parties who are not satisfied with the legislative product can channel their dissatisfaction through legal channels or a judicial review to the Constitutional Court.
Support Independent Journalism: Subscribe to The Jakarta Post
In these difficult times, our hometown English language newspaper, The Jakarta Post, is more important than ever. Given the difficulties of physical circulation and the economic slump, the Post needs to boost its online subscribers – a goal we heartily support at AmCham Indonesia. Quality English language news is vital for our businesses, our home offices and the flow of information out of Indonesia. It is for this reason, that we are urging all of our members and readers to subscribe to JP! Information is what will help get us through this crisis. Below is information about how to sign up.
We Still Need Your Support to Shelter the Front Line
AmCham Indonesia and Habitat for Humanity have joined forces in an initiative called Sheltering Those Who Care for Us, a program to provide temporary quarters in hotels for Indonesian medical workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our program has helped not only medical workers in Jakarta, but also Tangerang and Surabaya; we are now planning to expand to Sulawesi.
With the COVID-19 pandemic still spreading, medical workers are working a lot harder than before. In these difficult times, they often cannot go back home for fear of infecting family members or being rejected by their local communities. As a result, they are forced to sleep in hospitals without a proper bed, also increasing the possibility of getting infected.
By donating, we will increase the overall capability of Indonesia to treat COVID-19. Habitat will match individual hospitals with hotels on an as-needed basis.
We are continuing with a full slate of meetings, events and information offered to our community online. But we can only do this through the support of our members. If you are not yet an AmCham member, please join now!
AmCham Indonesia is open to all companies with an interest in US business relations and we have many non-American members. We are a community and we welcome you!
The AmCham Office is on work from home status and all face-to-face meetings and events have been postponed. We are having a number of meetings online using the Zoom platform. You will be notified of virtual meetings as they are scheduled.
What is Your Company Doing on COVID-19?
Please let us know what measures your company may be taking in the form of donations and other assistance to help Indonesia during this time of confusion and concern. Contact [email protected] with your news. We would like to publicize the ways that our AmCham companies are pitching in.
Stay safe, call a doctor if you have a high fever, cough, or difficulty breathing. Stay healthy above all else.
COVID Update is AmCham’s regular newsletter on developments related to the pandemic crisis in Indonesia. It is edited by AmCham Managing Director A Lin Neumann and written by the AmCham Staff. Paul L Goddard is the Managing Editor