Ambon. The press community in Indonesia needs to level up their game in this changing world, where slow growth environment, unemployment and inequality remain the biggest challenges, the chief executive of Lippo Group, James Riady, said in Ambon on Wednesday (08/02).
James said journalists shoulder the responsibility to push for reform while at the same time they still have to provide accurate and objective information to the public.
James pointed out the world's economy continues to underperform, a real challenge for everyone in the near term. "The press has to present and educate the public what challenges lie ahead and how to address those challenges," the businessman said at a gathering in Ambon, Maluku, to commemorate National Press Day 2017.
James highlighted uncertainties over economic growth all over the world, including in Europe and Japan. He said growth has not been able to suppress rising unemployment in those developed regions, while another engine of the world's growth, China, is also experiencing slower growth after years of acceleration.
The businessman, whose Lippo Group controls BeritaSatu Media Holdings, said amid all the uncertainties and a constantly underperforming economy, people tend to believe in promises for changes from their leaders, a factor that may have led to the rise of US President Donald Trump, despite his controversial protectionist stance.
The slow growth in the world economy is also reflected in Indonesia, where growth hovered at a low 5 percent last year. At the same time, the country is also facing the danger of rising intolerance and James called on the Indonesian press community to be an information gatekeeper for the public. In that respect, the media have to present news, analyses and opinion that are balanced, accurate and responsible.
Among high profile attendees in the gathering was Communication and Information Minister Rudiantara, the National Army Chief Gen. Gatot Nurmantyo, the chairman of the Indonesian Press Council Yoseph Adi Prasetyo, the chairman of the Indonesian Journalists Association (PWI) Margiono and media owners like James himself, Hary Tanoesoedibjo, the owner of the diversified media group MNC and Anindya Bakrie, whose family control Visi Media Asia, Bakrie Group's media holding company.