Community Responds Positively to BLT BBM
By: Abdul Rozak)*
The public gave a very positive response regarding the distribution of BLT BBM carried out by the government because it was very helpful and very effective only for vulnerable groups and maintained purchasing power as a mitigation of the impact of fuel price adjustments.
It is known that the subsidy disbursed by the government is only to supply and guarantee the supply of fuel oil (BBM) in Indonesia. This will gradually have an impact on how the ability of the government itself to be able to finance the acceleration and expansion of social protection programs that are oriented towards improving people’s welfare and improving infrastructure will be severely constrained.
Recently, Indonesia has continued to strive to accelerate the revival of the national economy after being hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, and also after being exacerbated by the chaotic world geopolitical conditions, with the conflicts that occurred in Russia and Ukraine which caused the global economy to also be shaken.
Meanwhile, even with the fuel subsidy that has been carried out by the government so far, in fact in the field there is an inaccuracy in the provision of the subsidy because it is actually enjoyed by some people who can afford it. Even though the government itself has spent up to Rp 502 trillion to cover the fuel subsidy.
In the official website of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources of the Republic of Indonesia, it is stated that since the last 5 years the government has allocated Rp 1,300 trillion for energy subsidies. Therefore, the government will continue to try to suppress the consumption of subsidized fuel because it is not on target, some of the steps are converting subsidized fuel, including controlling it.
The Chancellor of the University of Indonesia (UI), Prof. Ari Kuncoro said that the government had to adjust the price of fuel, but on the other hand it must also be accompanied by direct cash assistance (BLT) for the community. According to him, these two things will be able to strengthen Indonesia’s fiscal resilience and can achieve the resilience of the country’s economic growth.
Maintaining the resilience and fiscal strength of the state is an obligation owned by the Government, especially Prof. Ari also added that so far the consumption of fuel needs in the community continues to increase, so that if the government continues to subsidize, the State Budget will continue to be increasingly depressed.
If the state budget continues to be depressed, fiscal resilience will also be shaken and it will also be difficult to balance Indonesia’s production capacity in the future. If this continues, it will be very dangerous. For this reason, there must be a compromise between subsidies and fiscal resilience. Moreover, according to the UI Chancellor, the economy must continue to stretch because the people’s economy will continue to support the fundamental strength of the Indonesian economy.
The provision of BLT to the community will be able to maintain purchasing power in vulnerable communities so that the impact of inflation will be minimized because the movement of MSMEs in the country will continue to occur. Moreover, if these two things have been done, then the APBN that has been budgeted will be used for other more productive interests such as building the health sector, irrigation, road infrastructure and others.
Therefore, recently, after officially implementing the fuel price adjustment policy, the government is continuing to focus on mitigating the impact of the fuel price adjustment, especially for the affected vulnerable communities.
The Main Analyst of Political Economy Lab45, Reyhan Noor stated that the provision of BLT is very effective in being able to help affected communities when facing the adjustment of subsidized fuel prices. He even said that the statement was based on a previous comprehensive review process.
The reason why the distribution of BLT BBM is so effective is that the target recipients are much clearer than by continuing to maintain the fuel subsidy, which actually benefits the poor with a higher percentage of around 70 percent.
In line with the statement from Prof. Ari Kuncoro, Reyhan Noor also believes that giving BLT BBM to the community can greatly reduce the pressure experienced by the community, especially those who are underprivileged so that their purchasing power is maintained.
Even so, the Economic Analyst continues to appeal to the government to be able to ascertain how the data on BLT BBM recipients is, even if necessary, there must be periodic improvements from the data so that the quality of BLT distribution can be even better and also on target.
In the future, Reyhan stated that the government must continue to monitor the movement of food prices and also ensure the availability of supplies in the community.