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Jakarta Post

Jokowi pushes for reform to prevent rent-seeking in business, trade

  • Tri Indah Oktavianti

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Wed, August 26, 2020   /   04:55 pm
Jokowi pushes for reform to prevent rent-seeking in business, trade A screen grab of a mass prayer event, attended by President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo and several religious figures, which was livestreamed on the Presidential Secretariat's YouTube channel on May 14, 2020. (YouTube/Sekretariat Presiden)

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo urged his administration to push for bureaucratic reform in business permits and commerce in order to prevent people from gaining illicit personal benefit from the sector.

He highlighted that business and commerce in the food, medicine and energy sectors were prone to rent-seeking practices carried out by individuals seeking personal wealth without actually fulfilling the agreement.

“These practices would impact the people who bear the high price of corrupt practices,” Jokowi said in his speech during the National Action on Corruption Prevention at the Bogor Presidential Palace on Wednesday.

Rent-seekers often use political influence and lobbying to secure deals valued higher than usual. Experts believe rent-seeking harms economic growth by discouraging competition and innovation.

Read also: KPK gets bigger role in national antigraft campaign

Jokowi went on to say that reform was urgently needed so 60 million small and medium enterprises across the country, which are regarded as the main pillar of the country’s economy, would not be impacted by the unhealthy system.

“We need to reform our policies and the bureaucratic system and make it transparent. We also need to utilize information and technology, as well as develop a digital system accessible by society,” the President said.

He claimed that the omnibus bill on job creation would become a legal solution to push for accountable and innovative employment through an integrated regulation.

“The pandemic has given us time to make comprehensive improvements. We need to build an efficient and accountable system that is free from corruption.”

The President also encouraged the promotion of an anti-corruption cultural movement in society as a moral obligation as a citizen.