Indonesian President defends new job law

Indonesian President Joko Widodo has defended the new job law that has triggered a wave of protest in Indonesia.  The country needs the sweeping “omnibus” jobs creation law to provide employment for its young population and those unemployed due to the economic crisis brought about by the coronavirus pandemic, the President said. 

On protests, he said: “I saw demonstrations against the Job Creation Law that were basically motivated by disinformation.” 

The job creation bill amended 79 previous laws and was intended to improve bureaucratic efficiency as part of efforts by Joko Widodo’s administration to attract more investment to the country. Those protesting against the bill say that the law will hurt workers by reducing severance pay, removing restrictions on manual labour by foreign workers, increasing the use of outsourcing, and converting monthly salaries to hourly wages. Protests against the job creation bill will continue in the next week. 

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