The good news is that recession is mild

J. Soedradjad Djiwandono
J. Soedradjad Djiwandono, Emeritus Professor of Economics, Faculty of Economics and Business, Universitas Indonesia, and Adjunct Professor of International Economics, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore.

Jakarta, IO – Sometime back I wrote in a column here that the recession in the US Economy will be mild when there was still concern regarding EU economies. But lately, even in EU there seems more hope that economic recession in EU countries will also be mild. Unemployment may still be relatively high, but inflation rate is also dissipating. 

I have no privy regarding the economic development of China, but the expectation is just economic growth would be low, but no recession. Lately, the one making news has been the abandonment of Zero Covid policy, and the implications for millions and millions of people will be travelling, celebrating The Lunar New Year and the freedom of travelling after three years of strick confinement in their respective cities and towns. This joy must go together with concern of the Covid spreading in remote places that are poorly equipped with medical facilities for people if they get sick, let alone the spreading of pandemic like. 

Since there will also be millions of Chinese travelling abroad, many countries already concerned regarding the danger of the spreading of Covid as China kept non-transparent regarding their vaccination programs. Countries, like the US, UK, France, Spain and most EU countries already announcing a new rule for Chinese travellers entering their countries to have test on arrival with the denial of entry for those having positive results in their tests.

The rule in Southeast Asia has not been clear. I think Singapore, Malaysia and others put up similar rule of test on arrivals. But, others, including Indonesia has not made any decision yet. Frankly it is worrisome as we know that Bali for example has become favourite Chinese tourists’ destination for quite some time. Let us hope that the Minister of Health makes decision soonest before it is too late. We have been doing all right domestically, we should not be careless regarding foreign tourist. We welcome them to visit places, but not if they come with the Covid virus.