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Government Alerts to Impact of Omicron Variant

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By: Edi Prasetyo )*

The government continues to be aware of the various impacts of the Omicron Covid-19 variant, including on the national economic sector. The community is also expected to work together by complying with the Prokes and following various calls to prevent the transmission of Covid-19.

The pandemic has changed almost everything, including the economy. Many countries have fallen and experienced a crisis due to this small virus. However, the Indonesian government continues to struggle during the pandemic, so that it does not fall into a recession or economic crisis. This is proven because during 2021 we can rise again and the wheels of the economy are driven again so that conditions can recover.

However, the arrival of the Omicron variant of Corona could damage Indonesia’s economic revival plans. The reason is the virus that results from this mutation can spread 5 times faster. If it has already spread in Indonesia, it can increase the number of Corona patients again and then have a negative effect on the economy.

However, the public should not worry because the government continues to monitor the development of the spread of the Omicron variant so that the impact can be minimized. Finance Minister Sri Mulyani stated that the government would try to maintain the momentum of economic recovery. The scenarios that will be implemented to overcome Omicron are accelerating vaccination coverage and supervising the implementation of health protocols.

The scheme against Corona Omicron is indeed used in the health sector because health is the main key to controlling the Covid-19 pandemic. This means that if the number of Corona patients does not increase again, the government can focus on improving state finances.

Meanwhile, Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartarto stated that the government had prepared a scenario if the Omicron variant affected the economy. The scenario depends on how bad the effect is.

Minister Airlangga added, if the effects of the Corona variant of the Omicron are controlled, the government hopes that economic growth will be as expected, which is 5.2% of the APBN. However, if the opposite happens, then there is 10% of the funds for handling the covid and the national economic recovery that is prepared as a bumper for the Omicron effect. Funds of 5.2 trillion are expected to restore the situation in Indonesia.

The reserve fund was indeed prepared because we do not yet know what the effects of the Corona variant of Omicron will be in Indonesia. It could be that this virus only stagnates in cities where there are Corona Omicron patients (Jakarta and Manado) but it could spread when there are people without symptoms who turn out to be infected with Corona Omicron. If in the worst case it spreads, it could affect the economy.

The worst case scenario has to be considered, because we don’t want to take it easy in the face of the Omicron variant of Corona. If indeed it spreads in Indonesia, the funds prepared by the government are expected to be able to control it. The reason is because it can be used again to buy personal protective equipment, ventilators, and other medical devices in many hospitals.

In addition, funds from the government can be used for the sterilization of schools and other public places, so it is hoped that if these places are hygienic, there will be no more transmission of Corona Omicron. Funds from the government were also bought for masks so that they were distributed free on the streets, so that more and more people obeyed health protocols.

If everyone is disciplined in obeying health protocols, then we can minimize the transmission of the Corona variant of the Omicron so that its arrival will not have an impact on the economic sector. The transmission of the Covid-19 virus can be controlled and there is no spike in patients in various regions in Indonesia.

If everything is healthy then the spirit to work and revive the economy in Indonesia. The health sector is indeed related to the economy, and health is the first to be improved so that the state’s finances are strong.

The country’s economy must indeed rise so that we are not trapped in a monetary crisis like 1998. There are predictions that Indonesia’s economic recovery could take place in a little more than 2 years, so this is the time for us to work diligently and move the economy again.

The government continues to monitor the development of the Omicron Covid-19 variant in Indonesia to prevent the spread of the negative impact of the disease. Therefore, the public is asked to always obey the Prokes and follow various government recommendations because without public compliance, the handling of the Covid-19 pandemic will be difficult to produce maximum results.

)* The author is an economic observer/contributor of Citizen Journalism

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