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Jakarta Post

The long, winding road to economic recovery

  • Winarno Zain


Jakarta   /   Fri, September 25 2020   /  01:00 am
Business must go on: A number of visitors examine small and medium enterprise (SME) products during the Bandung Creative Market 2020 exhibition at Trans Studio Mall in the West Java provincial capital on Sept. 11. The exhibition was part of efforts to help the economy recover. (Antara/Novrian Arbi)

As people suffer the pain of the pandemic its economic shock, they hope the economic recovery will come soon. But this will depend on how the government responds to the spread of the virus and the weakening of the economy. So far we’ve seen three types of government responses. The first type is the China model, where a brutal lockdown was imposed soon after COVID-19 began to spread. The virus was quickly contained but at huge economic cost. The economy contracted by 6.8 percent in the first quarter but rapidly rebounded, growing 3.2 percent in the second quarter. The second type of response is the United States model, where the federal government ignored the threat of virus and did not institute a nationally integrated and comprehensive response to the pandemic. President Donald Trump thought the virus would go away by itself, and he developed narratives that contradicted ...