The Jakarta Post
Finance Minister Sri Mulyani and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation founder Melinda Gates agree that technology, despite its disruptive effects, should not be treated as a threat but as an opportunity and challenge.
Speaking at a discussion on policies for harnessing technology for growth, Sri Mulyani said the invention of new technologies had opened up opportunities for improving welfare.
“Now, it is about ensuring that the technology is useful for inclusive growth,” said Sri Mulyani on Thursday at the event on the sidelines of the 2018 IMF-World Bank Annual Meetings in Nusa Dua, Bali.
She added that people in emerging economies had to be able to adapt to technological disruption, so that they could benefit from technology.
“We don’t want to sacrifice the people for technology. This country is categorized as a middle-income [economy] and has established unicorns. That creates an opportunity,” she said.
Policymakers in emerging countries should be empowered so that they could introduce policies to deal with technological disruption.
Meanwhile, Gates said Sri Mulyani and herself had established the Pathways Commission with the aim to create advantages from technology. Gates was impressed with the Go-Jek application, that serves not only transportation purposes but also connects with other services.
“I want to say that digital transformation is very promising,” she said, adding that amid the challenges and risks, there were opportunities to make the economy more efficient and find new ways for those in government to interact with the people. (bbn)