Economist says lockdown not ideal solution for controlling COVID-19

Kupang, E Nusa Tenggara (ANTARA) - Country-wide lockdown to check the spread of the coronavirus would not be an ideal solution for Indonesia, said James Adam, an economist from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

The lockdown itself would have to be long term since the end of the outbreak cannot be predicted, James Adam told ANTARA in Kupang, East Nusa Tenggara, on Tuesday.

Adam made the statement in response to an ongoing discourse on enforcing a lockdown that has emerged amid national efforts to deal with the COVID-19 outbreak. He also argued that a lockdown, if implemented, would have some economic and social repercussions.

The economist further contended that countries are following different policies in dealing with the outbreak, based on their respective conditions.

"Our country's measures cannot be compared with Italy's. There would certainly be some major impact of enforcing a lockdown for a long term, and the end of the outbreak is unpredictable," he said. He stressed on the possible negatives of a lockdown on the national and local economy, as such a move would most likely slow down economic activity.

In fact, if a lockdown policy is not backed by a good system, it will trigger a sudden increase in demand and supply problems for daily necessities, and later on it will create some more social problems, he said.

Therefore, Adam suggested the government only lockdown areas most affected by the virus outbreak, if it feels the need for such a measure later on.

"So, there is no need for a complete national lockdown, since such a move may cause more problems if enforced," he said.

He further suggested the central government not rush into any decision, policy, or measure while dealing with the issue.

Adam expressed the hope that the Indonesian government will give the matter serious consideration and make proper preparations while formulating policies for handling the COVID-19 outbreak in the country.

Source: ANTARA News

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