Letters to the Editor for Saturday, Feb. 23

first_imgAmazon deal wasn’t worth the trade-offI’ve never been much of a supporter of government tax breaks to big business.An Amazon quote: “Amazon pays all the taxes we are required to pay.” That’s terrific; but last year they were given an “effective tax rate of minus one percent.” Seems to me an incentive of $3 billion to such a successful company (last year’s profits over $11 billion) is rather exorbitant, since New York state residents are supplementing this gift. It has also been stated that average wages for the 25,000 employees they were projecting would be $140,000 annually. The residents they were going to displace are typically low-income. Not an equitable trade-off in my book. And where was the disclosure from Cuomo and DiBlasio?Virginia GraneyGlenville Now the president is proposing to fund the wall by declaring a national emergency. Instead, why not fund the wall by securing a loan, as Wilbur Ross suggested for the government workers who received no paychecks? Forbes magazine estimates that the combined wealth of Trump and his cabinet is about $7.6 billion, more than enough collateral for such a loan.Don SteinerSchenectady Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionCity police need to issue more tickets When President Trump used “wall funding” as the basis for the partial government shutdown, he was being disingenuous and callous.Trump was being disingenuous because he was implying that our southern border represented a major security threat. There’s no evidence to support his claim.A recent threat assessment by our intelligence agencies didn’t mention any need for Trump’s wall. Moreover, while most Americans would agree that border security is important, few border experts have argued that “the wall” is essential to security. If construction of “the wall” truly represents a national emergency, why was it not funded when the Republicans controlled both the House and the Senate?Trump was being callous because he was “proud” to put at risk 800,000 government workers simply to fulfill a campaign promise. Many of the employees who were kept at work without pay and who were furloughed were subjected to significant economic and emotional stress. Trump seemed totally indifferent to the plight of the impacted workers and said, “I’m sure that people that are on the receiving end will make adjustments. They always do.” Easy for him to say. Passage of a new law doesn’t make it moralIn response to Assemblyman Phil Steck’s Feb. 17 editorial in The Daily Gazette, I believe that because the RHC Act was signed into law does not make it morally acceptable. I think if a poll is taken, more people would agree. Concerning name calling, Mr. Steck thinks The Gazette was not acting responsibly when he was called a “murderer.” What about freedom of speech? It’s also one of our fundamental freedoms of American life. Mary WhiteNiskayuna Let Trump’s wealthy friends fund his wall We must take action on climate seriously and earn the support of everyone. Please cover these issues more than the stupidity that often is covered. Alixandra FoisyAlbany Concern for people shouldn’t be limitedI want to thank Assemblyman Phil Steck for his attempt to separate fact from fiction in his Feb. 17 column on New York’s Reproductive Health Care Act. Sadly, he knows that he’s preaching to the choir. Not a single solitary mind will be changed by his reasonable facts, unfortunately.I do have a question though, for those who insist that the state or any religion has a moral obligation or a legal right to tell any female what she is and isn’t allowed to do with her body.My question is this: Once out of a female body, once disconnected from an umbilical cord, why the lack of moral outrage when this being who requires education, nutrition, shelter, medical care, a thriving healthy community, respect and dignity, can so easily fail to obtain adequate levels of these? Why so few tears, prayers and activism? If and when a time comes that I begin to hear the prayers and see the tears of “believers” for the incarcerated, for the perpetually hungry, for those who are insufficiently educated for decent-paying jobs, then we’ll actually have something to talk about.A being’s immediate connection to a uterus cannot be nearly the sole criteria for concern for human life. Now, keep your religion off my body. Thanks.Elisa WinterAlbany Hatred on liberal TV networks is very clear Abortion law helpful to the irresponsibleSo much confusion with words. A new human being is a result of a sperm joining an ovum, either in the body of a female or in a laboratory. When this new being begins, it’s called a zygote. Within seven or so days, this being, now called an embryo, works its way into the womb or is placed there from the lab. As it grows in the womb, it’s called a fetus until it’s ready to outgrow its home in the woman. For people who want this being, it’s called ‘our child.’ For people who don’t want this being of human origin, it’s called an ‘invader.’  Who should protect whom? From all scientific evidence, this growth has its own DNA, unlike a tumor or a tooth. On delicate ultrasound equipment, this being has a heartbeat after 20 days from implantation in the womb. These data are available on medical research sites, or ask a veterinarian who does artificial insemination. Whose choice is it for the sperm getting into the ovum to form the zygote? When females are respected for the very specific beauty of fertility and have a trusted spouse, a responsible family unit is begun. Often, without a marriage of equals, children are put at risk. Our society needs the bedrock stability of committed spouses. Abortion isn’t the answer, especially when it’s deemed government approved.  We must all act to stop climate changeClimate change is happening here and now, and I’m terrified. When I was young, I tried to take action, just like young people who are involved with the Sunrise Movement. I’m now in midlife and am not sure what we will be going through in our community and our world if we don’t act now. Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Green New Deal is not equivalent to the progressive agenda and Rep. Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Markey’s resolution.We know that there are only 12 years to transform our economy to preserve the stable climate human civilization has depended on for millennia. We need a massive mobilization of every sector of society on par with what science and justice demand.A Green New Deal will keep Americans safe from climate change and create millions of green jobs, and it will help to address the issues of racial and social justice that we all eventually face. I work with people who are older, those who have a disability and people with mental-health issues. Global warming affects us all and only exacerbates issues we are currently facing.  Where are the Schenectady police? I had a business meeting in downtown last week.When I left the meeting at 3:00, traffic on Erie Boulevard was a nightmare. People running red lights, speeding, weaving in and out of traffic. The circle at Nott Street was dangerous. People coming into the circle were not yielding to the cars in it.Schenectady has a budget problem. If the police started giving out tickets, they would have a lot of money coming in.Thomas DonovanBallston Lakecenter_img Need national policy based on scienceI’m very disappointed with Congressman Paul Tonko. In 2018, the IPCC report on climate change was issued, informing us that by 2030 global carbon levels need to be lowered by 45 percent to maintain a 1.5-degree C increase in global warming. Newly elected Alexandra Octavio-Cortez called for Green New Deal (H.R. 109), which would rapidly transition us from dirty to clean energy. But Tonko refused to be a co-sponsor. It’s only because Jesus supernaturally keeps the United States of America together because he appreciates its protection of the freedom of faith that it hasn’t fallen long ago.But that will not always be so. Soon, Jesus will give up and let the United States of America tear itself apart.In the meantime, I suggest that you get on the right side of history by leaving whichever party you are now in and joining up with Jesus instead. That way, you will leave the vast majority tearing this nation apart and instead work with Jesus to keep this nation together.Joel NelsonSchenectady In one of his neutral letters, he wrote: “We must keep an open mind to effectively tackle the problem of climate change. It is essential that we ensure that government policies are reflective of the most innovative ideas … with the goal of decarbonizing our economy as rapidly as economically and technically possible.”Why can’t we decarbonize too quickly? For the sake of Big Business? Well, that’s what we must do to prevent runaway climate change. Propping up an oil-based, endless growth economy will bury us all.Green jobs are the future. The fastest renewable energy job growth has occurred in the solar and wind sectors, 24 percent and 16 percent in 2016 and 2017, respectively. Jobs in these sectors outnumber jobs in coal and gas in 31 states.What’s missing is a science-based public policy that imagines a different climate future that works to lower emissions, impact wise land use and prepare population centers for extreme weather. I’m looking to my representative to help craft a Green New Deal that replaces the resource-extracting, ecocidal policies with environmentally sustainable plans of action.Barbara TrypalukSaratoga Springs Steck made very clear case for health actAssemblyman Phil Steck’s clear explanation of New York’s Reproductive Health Act (Sunday, Feb. 17) is deserving of both our attention and support. He clearly explains what the law does and does not allow. He clearly explains that no one is coerced in any way to violate one’s own beliefs. He provides background information that clarifies why the law is written as it is. The law provides safe medical options for women who need them.In our highly polarized political climate, it takes courage to take a stand that not everyone will support. I support the New York Reproductive Health Care Act and I definitely support Mr. Steck.Eleanor AronsteinSchenectady Who needs jobs when we have socialism?Here’s what everyone is forgetting as they attack Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez for celebrating Amazon’s withdrawal from Queens and her seeming not to care about the loss of 25,000 jobs: The folks in New York City and Queens don’t really need those jobs.Remember, when AOC’s “Green Dream” economic package is passed, the government (read you and I) will provide “economic security to all of those unable or unwilling to work.” I really thought when the USSR collapsed, we had seen the last of Karl Marx and his nutty ideas.George NigrinyGlenville Killing our own kind promotes a broken society. The Reproductive Health Act is oxymoronic; no pregnant female will be helped by it. The RHA is a big win for feral fathers.Sheila M. NeugebauerBallston Spa Hate; I find it amazing what television has done to our country. There are six major TV networks in our country: ABC, NBC, CBS, MSNBC, CNN and FOX, which supply the majority of political news.CNN and FOX are cable stations that a large portion of the country don’t subscribe to. All of these news outlets, with the exception of FOX, make up the Liberal Propaganda Network (LPN).The LPN has given up all pretense of being fair and unbiased. The LPN’s so-called news broadcasts hate conservatives talk shows and comedians that aren’t funny. The hatred for conservatives and hatred for the president of the United States comes through loud and clear. Dictators around the world have one thing in common; they control the media and the media controls people’s minds. When you hear them hate the president and the conservatives day after day, the hate mind-control is working on many liberals. I find it interesting to watch the faces of the hosts of the LPN. The hatred is very clear and is transmitted to the viewers.Marv LivingstonCharlton Schenectady must invest in road repairSchenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy, please drive on Guilderland Avenue from the Pointe Café to Bond’s Funeral Home. The road is in horrible condition. No amount of patching will work.A lot of money was spent to make downtown Schenectady more appealing to visitors. There have to be well-maintained roads leading to the Rivers casino. I like going to Rivers. I drive on city roads to get there and I don’t want to have to have a wheel alignment because the roads are awful.It amazes me that government wasted millions of dollars on those stupid signs along the highway (that the feds forced us to take down because they were too close to each other and posed a distraction to drivers), but can’t find the money to make our roads safer.  Lorraine VanDerWerkenSchenectady Work with Jesus in order to save AmericaBecause of extreme fanaticism on the part of both parties, during this century at any given time, half of the population of the United States of America hates its own nation because its president doesn’t belong to the same party they do.“If a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.” (Mark 3:24 or Abraham Lincoln; take your pick). Don’t let $3 billion for Amazon be wastedWhat an amazing event occurred this past week. Amazon has decided not to locate a distribution center in Queens, New York City.In doing so, they turned down Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s offer of about $3 billion of “tax relief,” i.e. money we taxpayers would have had to ante up. Now if I remember correctly, our governor just announced a week or two ago that an impending revenue shortfall of about $3 billion (what’s a billion or so dollars here or there) was lurking in this year’s budget for New York State, i.e. us taxpayers.Now it should be no problem. Put that $3 billion worth of “tax relief” that Amazon turned down back in the revenue bucket, and the shortfall will disappear. Our politicians sometimes take a long time to understand changes, so I urge all New Yorkers to contact their representatives and tell them to make that happen. Don’t let that unexpected $3 billion leak out of the revenue bucket and disappear, say into further raises for our governor and legislators. Forman PhillipsBallston SpaMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationlast_img read more

Housing needs met without large-scale land

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

Regus shares rise thanks to Dixon

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

Unhappy new year

first_imgWould you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletters To access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week.last_img

PREMIUMNext generation of Indonesian tycoons: Who are calling the shots now?

first_imgForgot Password ? Google LOG INDon’t have an account? Register here Linkedin Log in with your social account Over the past decade, prominent long-running family businesses in the country have found themselves grappling with the chilling existential question of whether they would be able to survive the changing business landscape and maintain their relevance for another 10 years.The fear proved potent enough for several major family ventures as they pulled out all the stops to diversify their businesses, with a number of legacy conglomerates investing heavily in today’s single most disruptive force: technology.Behind these companies’ scramble for survival are a new generation of movers and shakers – the heirs to several of the country’s most notable tycoons who have made a name for themselves through headline-grabbing ventures and accomplishments.According to the PwC 2019 Global NextGen Survey, which was conducted in 69 territories across five continents and i… Topics : Facebook tycoon business wealth wealthy-family Indonesia Putri-Indah-Tanjung Axton-Salim John-Riady Christina-Suriadjaja Victor-Hartonolast_img read more

France confirms first case of ruinous tomato virus

first_imgTomato plants in France’s far-west Finistere region have been contaminated with a destructive virus that can lead to whole crops being wasted, the agriculture ministry said on Monday.A farm had been isolated and greenhouses full of tomatoes would be destroyed, as there is no known treatment, it said.The tomato brown rugose fruit virus, known as ToBRFV, leads to rough discoloured patches on the fruit that render it unsellable — and officials warned earlier that its spread would have “major economic consequences” for farmers. The virus, which is not harmful to humans, was first reported in 2014 at greenhouses in Israel before it spread to Europe and America.”We have received the results from the French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety of the samples from the Finistere and… they have been contaminated by the virus,” the ministry said.  Growers in Spain and Italy — the EU’s biggest tomato producers — have been affected, as have some in the US and Mexico, and Britain announced its first cases last July.Germany managed to eradicate an outbreak in several greenhouses by ripping out the plants and destroying them, and then treating the soil with disinfectants.France promised in early February to carry out hundreds of checks on plants and seeds, on top of regular inspections.Topics :last_img read more

More than a woman in business: Shinta Kamdani talks leadership in economy

first_imgYou are one of the members of the omnibus bill on job creation task force. What is your take on commentators who say that the bill is more beneficial for business players than it is for workers? We need the omnibus bill because Indonesia is having difficulties in attracting investors and we are experiencing a current account deficit (CAD) over the past five years. Unemployment is rising and we need to be able to provide enough jobs.The omnibus bill on job creation is a breakthrough in the sense that it could simplify regulations and it is important because it can help attract more investments that can help create jobs and prosperity. The omnibus bill is pro-government and for the greater good. It is a misnomer when people say the bill is more beneficial for businesses. I think that if Indonesia’s investment environment is favorable and small and medium enterprises can grow, this is all beneficial for the Indonesian people. It needs to be clarified that this bill is not only for business players. It helps Indonesia grow. Topics : Question: You are often referred to as an influential woman. What is your take on that and how do you use your influence to create good business practice?Answer: I don’t see myself as only a woman in business, but I am also a business leader. I am also a deputy chairwoman for international relations at the Indonesia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin) and I think a lot of things I do is not just for my own business but to support the country’s trade, investment ecosystem and economic growth. Unfortunately, there are still only a few female business leaders in Indonesia because the problem is not only how to attract women to enter the workforce but also how to encourage them to have the willingness to become leaders. They face many challenges, especially regarding work-life balance where they are expected to do all the domestic chores even if they have a job.This motivates me to push women into becoming professional leaders or entrepreneurs by conducting mentoring programs, initiating the Indonesia Business Coalition for Women Empowerment (IBCWE) organization and establishing the Angel Investment Network Indonesia (Angin) a venture company that emphasizes women entrepreneurs.  Sintesa is the first business group to be certified with Economic Dividend for Gender Equality (EDGE) certification and there is no gender pay gap in the Sintesa group. We make it easier for women by providing lactation rooms and we are developing daycare too so women can work with ease. However, we are seeing more men with a desire to be involved in domestic affairs such as taking their kids to school. Read also: In ASEAN, gender equality still very much a ‘tick-the-box’ issueYou were named one of the chairpersons of the United Nations’ Global Investors for Sustainable Development Alliance (GISD Alliance) last year. Can you share with us your role in the alliance?The GISD alliance aims to create business models for investment initiatives in sustainable development. 30 business leaders chair the alliance, three of which are from Asia and I am one of them. I was chosen because I have been championing SDGs [Sustainable Development Goals] in Indonesia for a long time. I’ve initiated the Indonesian Business Coalition on Sustainable Development that helps businesses incorporate some of the SDG values. At the Sintesa group, we have an Urban Food Security program in support of sustainable production and consumption. We uphold gender equality and we only deal with renewable and clean energy.With that in mind, maybe the United Nations saw me as a good example and a good fit to chair the alliance. Indonesia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin) deputy chairman for international relations Shinta Widjaja Kamdani (left) and US ASEAN Business Council senior vice president Michael W. Michalak sign agreement to enhance collaboration to help better investment climate in Indonesia in this file photo. (JP/Stefani Ribka)What is Sintesa Group’s plan for 2020?First, we want to continue being a sustainably excellent company by integrating Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in our business model. Secondly, we are going to focus on consumers in e-commerce in the digital economy sector. In our property sector, we want to focus on the Likupang Special Economic Zone (SEZ) project so we will hold our hotel’s expansion for the meantime. Meanwhile, we are in the middle of drilling a new geothermal source.We have four business sectors and each of them has a specific target but the key is investing in human capital. I believe that with proper training for our human resources, we can anticipate economic uncertainties and all the challenges this year may bring.   We are planning to undertake an initial public offering (IPO) for two of our other companies.The first one is an energy subsidiary and an IPO will be held shortly. Sintesa also plans to carry out an IPO for our property subsidiary but it is still in our midterm plan because the property market is quite unstable right now.Read also: Likupang awaits its time in the tourism sun Sintesa through the Minahasa Permai Resort Development will play a part in developing the Likupang Special Economic Zone (SEZ). Can you share with us about Sintesa’s plans for the SEZ project?This is our first involvement in the government SEZ project that we got last year. We partnered with the regional government to develop 600 hectares of land in which 200 hectares would be designated for conservation purposes.Our program aims to create eco-tourism in the area. In the first stage, we will develop basic infrastructure on 200 hectares of land such as creating a master plan for an eco-resort and a cultural village. The area will be powered by geothermal energy. As for waste management, we have coordinated with the Environment Ministry to apply good waste management and create water treatment plans.  There will be residential areas and apartments too, but these are all long-term projects.Read also: Guide to omnibus bill on job creation: 1,028 pages in 10 minutes Being a businesswoman in an industry dominated by men has inspired Sintesa Group CEO Shinta Kamdani to open more doors for women to not just work but also to become leaders in Indonesia’s business community.To commemorate International Women’s Day, which falls on March 8, The Jakarta Post’s Eisya A. Eloksari sat down with the deputy chairman of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin) on Feb. 19 to talk about her group’s effort to support female workers. She shared her group’s business plan as a business group that runs businesses in consumer goods and energy to an industrial estate and property. Below is the edited excerpt of the interview.last_img read more

Rupiah inches closer to Rp 17,000 per US dollar as COVID-19 fears grow

first_imgTopics : Futures firm RFX Garuda Berjangka director Ibrahim said COVID-19 had crippled the global economy, which prompted investors to dump emerging market currencies, adding that the only solution would be the discovery of a vaccine.  “Investors consider the coronavirus to be the third world war, which could cause the rupiah to surpass 17,000 per dollar,” Ibrahim told reporters. “They are panicked as governments implement stricter measures, which have disrupted businesses and pushed consumers to stay home.”The rupiah tumbled 3.85 percent against the dollar to trade at 16,575 at Monday’s close. It reached Rp 16,625 during the day, the lowest level since the 1998 crisis, as the currency weakened almost 20 percent against the greenback this year.Meanwhile, the benchmark stock index, the Jakarta Composite Index (JCI), has lost a third of its value this year. The rupiah fluctuated at around 16,500 per US dollar on Tuesday despite a slight gain after falling sharply to near the 17,000-mark the previous day.The rupiah inched closer to Rp 17,000 against the dollar on Monday, the weakest since the 1998 crisis, as analysts believe it will further weaken amid the COVID-19 pandemic, despite strong economic fundamentals.According to Bloomberg’s latest currency data, the rupiah gained slightly to 16,495 per dollar on the spot market on Tuesday but analysts believe it will take time for the currency to return to the level of between 13,800 and 14,000 per dollar recorded in February.center_img The benchmark JCI, the main gauge at the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX), fell another 1 percent on Tuesday to 3,951 after losing 5 percent on Monday, the lowest level since June 2012. The benchmark index has lost 36 percent of its value since the beginning of the year.Ibrahim said the flagging rupiah was caused by the late response of the government in handling the outbreak, urging central government and regional administrations to work together to contain the outbreak and roll out further stimulus for the healthcare sector.Separately, Bank Permata chief economist Josua Pardede said that while currencies in emerging markets, including the rupiah, had weakened against the dollar, economic fundamentals were much better compared to the 1998 crisis.“Even though the rupiah almost reached the 1998 crisis level, the current depreciation rate of 19 percent year-to-date is much lower compared to the depreciation rate of 600 percent during the 1998 the crisis,” Josua told The Jakarta Post. “This means that Indonesia’s economic fundamentals are much stronger compared to the situation in 1998.”There were several reasons why economic fundamentals remained strong, Josua went on to say, including better management of corporate debts and better credit ratings compared to 1998.“The central bank’s decision to oblige companies to transact in safe-haven assets in mitigating risks from foreign exchange has resulted in better management of external corporate debts, as shown in lower growth of short-term debt,” Josua said.From the credit rating perspective, meanwhile, Indonesia had junk bond status in 1998, as the government borrowed money with high premiums, Josua said.“Indonesia’s credit rating is considered worth to invest in by all credit rating agencies worldwide right now. This further shows that they have confidence in Indonesia’s economic performance.”With the rupiah sliding over the last few weeks, Bank Indonesia (BI) has injected Rp 300 trillion (US$18 billion) into the market through the purchase of sovereign bonds, supply of dollars in the spot market and intervention in domestic non-deliverables forward.“The country’s foreign exchange reserves are adequate to meet dollar liquidity,” said BI Governor Perry Warjiyo on Friday. Indonesia’s central bank has begun holding daily repurchase and foreign exchange swap auctions to bolster liquidity.It also cut the benchmark interest rate to 4.5 percent on Thursday following the central bank’s board of governors meeting.last_img read more

Bank Indonesia ensures sufficient liquidity, sees signs of decline in capital outflows

first_imgBank Indonesia (BI) is ensuring the liquidity in the country’s financial system would be sufficient to meet the people’s needs in the coming months as massive capital outflows seen in the past several days have begun to decline.BI Governor Perry Warjiyo said in Jakarta on Thursday that there is at least Rp 450 trillion (US$27.77 billion) in cash stored in banks and ATMs in Indonesia, which would be sufficient for the next six months.“We have been working closely with banks in the last two weeks to boost their liquidity,” Perry told reporters on Thursday during an increased requirement for cash in the past several days to finance efforts to curb the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus. “We want to assure the public that we have sufficient stocks of cash.” Topics : Perry also said the central bank saw signs of easing capital outflows, driven by the announcement of a $2 trillion fiscal stimulus by the United States and to-be-announced stimulus by the European Union.“The stimulus package has reduced pressure on a global scale and resulted in better sentiments for Indonesia’s financial markets,” Perry said, adding the central bank has since recorded a lessening capital outflow.The rupiah appreciated as much as 1.8 percent against the US dollar to Rp 16,205 on Thursday, according to Bloomberg. The Jakarta Composite Index (JCI), meanwhile, jumped the most since 1999 by as much as 11 percent on Thursday’s trading, the best performer in the region, despite other Asian indices recording declines during the day.The COVID-19 crisis is much different than Asia’s crisis in 1998 and the global financial crisis in 2008 as banks remain in a healthy condition despite weakening business activities and volatile financial markets, Perry said.center_img “We want to make sure that the situation is different than the crisis in 1998 and in 2008 as the banking industry remains healthy with low levels of non-performing loans and good financial market conditions,” he added.Because of the pandemic, the central bank also plans to implement shorter trading hours and a shorter settlement period for transactions starting next week.As of Tuesday, BI had injected liquidity of up to Rp 300 trillion into the financial markets and banks to help support the country’s crashing currency as foreign investors sold off Indonesian assets.The central bank recorded a Rp 125.2 trillion capital outflow from government bonds, the stock market and BI certificates so far this year. Foreign investors sold Rp 112 trillion worth of government bonds and Rp 9.2 trillion worth of Indonesian shares, with most of the sell-offs recorded this month.last_img read more

COVID-19: Muhammadiyah advises Muslims to not perform mass ‘tarawih’, Idul Fitri prayers

first_imgThe Islamic organization reiterated that daily prayers should be done by Muslims at home rather than at mosques. “The Friday prayer can also be replaced with dzuhur [midday prayer] at home.”Read also: Religion and COVID-19 mitigationNahdlatul Ulama (NU), the largest Muslim organization in Indonesia, had also suggested Muslims living in COVID-19 red zones to temporarily stop engaging in mass prayers at mosques to flatten the infection curve.“It’s prohibited to perform mass prayers in red zones,” NU executive council said as quoted by nu.or.id.The government has marked most areas across Java Island as COVID-19 red zones after than 50 positive cases were recorded. Jakarta is the hardest-hit region with 747 cases recorded as of Tuesday.In total, Indonesia has reported 1,528 confirmed COVID-19-positive cases with 136 fatalities.Topics : Read also: COVID-19: Mosques defy ulema council appeal to suspend Friday prayerMuhammadiyah highlighted in the letter that such prayers were not obligatory, but rather sunnah (a voluntary act of worship).”If the COVID-19 situation remains [until the end of Ramadan], the string of events marking the Idul Fitri festivity shall not be organized, including the mudik [exodus],” according to the circular signed by members of the Muhammadiyah central executive board’s lawmaking and reform councils on March 21.The suggestion came a week after President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo called on all Indonesians to engage in social distancing, also known as physical distancing, by working, studying and worshipping at home to curb the spread of COVID-19. Indonesia’s second largest Muslim organization, Muhammadiyah, has issued a circular advising Muslims to perform tarawih (a night prayer during the fasting month of Ramadan) at home should the COVID-19 pandemic show no sign of improving in the coming month.The organization had also suggested that the Idul Fitri prayers, usually performed in congregations at mosques or in open fields to mark the end of Ramadan, should not be held during the health crisis.This year’s Ramadan is to start on April 23 and end on May 23.last_img read more