REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, JAKARTA -- The presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto and his running mate Sandiaga Uno will form what they call economic special team of experts to cope with the "present economic turbulence". The team will be in charge of taking steps that have to be taken to cope with the "economic woes" if Prabowo-Sandiaga win the forthcoming election in April next year.
"We will form a special team to address the economic turbulence," Sandiaga said here on Thursday night.
Incumbent President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) and his supporters have earlier concerned more on possibility of sensitive issues mainly religious issue being used to keep the vast majority Muslim voters at a distance. But with Ma'ruf Amin, chairman of the Indonesian Ulemas Council (MUI) as his running mate, the sensitive religious issue seems to have been taken care of.
However, Jokowi-Ma'ruf, though most surveys show that they are still favored to win the election, look "vulnerable" in economic issue with rupiah and price instability. The rupiah traded inter bank on Friday morning (Sept 14), moving down eight points to Rp14.800 compared to the previous position of Rp14.792 per US dollar.
Sandiaga, who was a successful businessman in background said, "With the people united the problem now besetting the country could be canalized to prevent the nation from sinking deeper."
He said the pessimism should not be allowed to prevail that the people are losing confidence in the economy, pointing to difficulty in finding jobs. The former Jakarta Vice Governor said Indonesia is indeed not yet plunging to economic crisis, but the country is facing economic turbulence.
Also read: Draft state budget 2019 to forestall global turbulence
"Mr Prabowo is calling on us to be united. Best talents of the nation are invited to meet to contribute to finding a solution especially to unemployment problem," he said.
Economic issue being faced by the people of the middle and middle-to-low income brackets is an issue concerning public confidence and optimism, which are 'almost zero', he said. Sandiaga also said that the public confidence has been in the level of pessimism when it concerns job availability.
He further said the opposition is trying to look at data that could be used as a reference mainly data issued by the Central Bank such as the index of public confidence in job availability, noting the index indicated public pessimism.
"I have reported this to Mr Prabowo and Mr Prabowo said this has to be dug deeper by our economic team," he stated.