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Jakarta Post

Ministry asks KPK to supervise national economic recovery program

  • Moch. Fiqih Prawira Adjie

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Thu, July 9, 2020   /   02:29 pm
Ministry asks KPK to supervise national economic recovery program State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) Minister Erick Thohir (front) is accompanied by Deputy SOE Minister Kartika “Tiko” Wirjoatmodjo (center) and ministry spokesman Arya Sinulingga as he attends a meeting with lawmakers at the House of Representatives complex in Central Jakarta on June 1. (Antara/Galih Pradipta)

The State-Owned Enterprises (SOE) Ministry is urging the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) to closely monitor the national economic recovery program, especially the distribution of funds for cooperatives as well as micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs).

During a meeting on Wednesday, SOE Minister Erick Thohir updated the antigraft body’s commissioners on the program’s design and mechanism, which was still being formulated by the government.

According to the latest draft, the government will carry out efforts to support the recovery of the virus-battered economy through capital injections and cash stimuli for certain banks, among other measures. The program will also regulate government investments, state guarantees and spending.

Read also: Government issues regulation on economic recovery program, focuses on SOEs, MSMEs

“The minister explained the progress of each scheme, including the ones related to working capital assistance and state capital participation,” KPK spokesperson Ipi Maryati said in a statement on Wednesday.

Erick asked the KPK to supervise every step of the program. He also asked for the antigraft body’s insight into formulating regulations and the program’s design and mechanism.

Furthermore, Erick urged the KPK to evaluate the program immediately once it has started.

Of the total Rp 318 trillion (US$21 billion) earmarked for the program, the government allocated almost half of it – Rp 152 trillion – for SOEs to use as working capital and accelerated compensation payments.

Meanwhile, the government will support MSMEs with Rp 6 trillion worth of new loan guarantees, Rp 28 trillion in tax incentives and Rp 34 trillion in loan interest subsidies. Another, Rp 34 trillion has been allocated for corporate tax incentives.

Read also: State banks to disburse $6.32b in loans to help businesses recover from COVID-19 hit

The antigraft body welcomed Erick’s request. “The KPK sees the minister’s request as an effort to strengthen coordination with relevant ministries in preventing corruption.”

The meeting between Erick and the KPK took place days after the minister suggested that corrupt practices were still rampant in SOEs. Erick previously claimed he had identified at least 53 graft cases involving officials holding dual roles in SOEs as well as other institutions.

Responding to Erick’s claim, KPK commissioner Nawawi Pomolango urged the minister to report them to the antigraft body to be investigated.