Riska Rahman and Rizki Fachriansyah, Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has criticized what he claims is the lackluster management of potential foreign investments amounting to Rp 1.6 quadrillion (US$116.8 billion) to date.
"It's a tremendous figure, it's almost the same as the national state budget. However, it has never been managed properly," Jokowi said in his speech at the National Investment Coordination Meeting in Jakarta on Thursday.
The President went on to say that Indonesia no longer needed to lure in new investors, given the considerable number of potential investments that the country had already managed to attract – but only if all could be realized.
Furthermore, he noted that there were investment projects worth Rp 708 trillion that had been stalled in the country due to a number of factors last year.
"I call on every regional head, every PTSP [One-Stop Integrated Service] head to serve [all investors]. If there's any issue, please help them resolve it. They can create so many new jobs for our people," Jokowi said.
He said that doubling down on the investment front was a surefire way to create job opportunities for the roughly seven million unemployed citizens across the country.
Jokowi said the state budget contributed only 16 percent to the country's economic growth. The figure increases to 23 percent if the state budget is combined with the budgets of regional administrations.
The country's gross domestic product (GDP) grew 5.02 percent last year, lower than the 5.17 percent recorded in 2018.
As the second-largest contributor to GDP after household spending, investments expanded 4.06 percent in the fourth quarter, slower than 6.01 percent growth booked in the same period in 2018, Statistics Indonesia data shows.