Indonesia stocks reached its highest level in more than a year on Wednesday (27/07) after President Joko 'Jokowi' Widodo announced a second cabinet reshuffle that cemented his political acumen and saw the return of economic reform. (Antara Photo/Widodo S Jusuf)

Jokowi: Reshuffle Aimed to Weather Economic Challenges


JULY 27, 2016

Jakarta. President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo said his decision to reshuffle the cabinet, swapping minister positions and adding new cabinet members, intends to speed up the administrations' efforts to weather economic challenges.

Jokowi introduced nine new cabinet members on Wednesday morning (27/07) with four ministers swapping position in a press conference around 11 a.m., at Merdeka Palace in Central Jakarta.

He was accompanied by Vice President Jusuf Kalla, State Secretary Minister Pratikno and Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung.

“Closing on two years of my administration, we have faced heavy challenges. We need to solve the problems of poverty, economic gap, inter-regional gap as soon as possible,” Jokowi said, opening his press briefing.

He said the cabinet shakedown aims to boost the efforts to handle country’s problems, including poverty, economic gap as well as inter-regional gap.

“I want the cabinet to give maximum efforts to work faster in a solid team so that the results can be perceived by public as soon as possible. Based on some considerations, I and Vice President Jusuf Kalla have decided the second cabinet reshuffle,” Jokowi said.

Jokowi said the reshuffle will increase unity within cabinet and maximize the government's efficiency in key areas as Indonesia continues to face economic challenges amid a global slowdown and increasing competition throughout the region.

“We have faced hard challenges in our two years of administration. We have to reduce the economic gap between the rich and the poor, as well as regional gaps. This is the issue we have to resolve faster,” Jokowi said at the State Palace.

The shifting challenges have been the main incentive to reenergizing the cabinet with a view to fulfilling the administrations welfare goals in both the short and long terms.

“This is for the cabinet to work faster and more effectively, as well as creating a solid and supportive team. The spirit of the cabinet reshuffle is strengthening the government’s performance,” the president said.

The previous cabinet saw several high profile squabbles between prominent ministers, including the long-running dispute over the 35,000 megawatt power developments. Former coordinating maritime minister Rizal Ramli maintained the target was unrealistic, while also taking on former minister of energy Sudirman Said on the South Maluku Masela Block project.

Coverage will continue throughout the day.