Francisca Christy Rosana, Jakarta – Director of the Center of Economic and Law Studies (Celios) Bhima Yudhistira Adhinegara responded to the government's policy on the opening of shopping malls during the extended PPKM Level 4 on August 10-16, 2021. This, however, was limited to four cities, namely Jakarta, Semarang, Surabaya, and Bandung.
Bhima said tenants would likely choose to close the shop because only vaccinated people were allowed to visit malls. Besides, the operation was limited to a maximum capacity of 25 percent.
"If the capacity is too small, tenants will prefer closing the shop to opening it with high operational cost," the economist told Tempo on Monday, August 9.
For tenants, the rental cost would not be proportional to the number of visitors, Bhima opined, so that the recovery from the retail sector would be very limited and gradual.
He also argued that the Covid-19 vaccine card requirements would be difficult to implement given the city's vaccination target has not reached 70 percent of the total population or has not achieved herd immunity.
Coordinator of the PPKM Level 4, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, announced on Monday, August 9, that the restrictions in Java-Bali were extended. He also said shopping malls were allowed to open with a capacity of 25 percent and under strict health protocols.