On April 3, 2020, the Indonesian government released regulations to implement large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) in order to slow down the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
More than 50 days have passed since its first implementation in the Capital City, Jakarta and now the country is preparing to live in the situation now called the ‘New Normal’ brought about by the pandemic.
Experts have expressed concerns about policies regarding COVID-19. Some groups believe that the duration of PSBB might not be enough while others believe that it is already time to open up the economy as more and more people are suffering financially due to the pandemic’s effect on the economy.
But enough with the experts. If we ask Indonesian citizens themselves about the thoughts on this matter, what would be their opinion?
On May 28, 2020, Snapcart, using its survey product TASC, asked over 3000 users to share their thoughts on the possible scenarios that may happen once PSBB is lifted as well as updates on how they are responding to the pandemic now compared to last month. Here are some of our findings.
1. Most Indonesians are still cautious about outdoor activities due to COVID-19
While the opinions on the level of safeness felt when going outdoors vary across different groups, a bigger percentage is leaning towards feeling less safe when going outdoors now compared to the past 30 days. This level of cautiousness can also be seen with most people still worried about traveling for pleasure even in the later part of 2020.
In terms of the stocking-up behavior observed at the beginning of the lockdown, the majority of people are still being cautious by stocking up on supplies of food and other necessities from grocery stores.
2. In terms of COVID-19 policies, most Indonesians are leaning towards more cautious decisions.
The majority of Indonesians (60%) believe that the current social restriction rules are not strict enough and thus need to be tightened further.
This is reflected in the fact that 50% thinks that in the next assessment of the extension or lifting of PSBB, the government must opt for the cautious approach of ‘wait-and-see’ first as they (the respondents) are not confident enough that the country is ready to lift PSBB, but also not overly pessimistic about the current situation.
Moreover, the majority (51%) of Indonesians also believe that the community’s health and survival must go first before its economic well-being. However, those who chose to prioritize addressing the economic problems are not far off in the figures (42%).
3. Yet, in terms of their views of the future regarding the pandemic, Indonesians are mostly optimistic.
A total of 64% believe that by 2021, at least some things will have already returned to normal, with 32% believing that most things will be back to how they were before the pandemic by 2021 which is only 6 months from now.
As of May 28, 2020, where Indonesia has started to loosen PSBB restrictions and is slowly opening up establishments closed during the lockdown, most Indonesians remain cautious on their activities, with the majority believing that stricter rules on PSBB is most necessary and that careful consideration is crucial to every decision on COVID-19 restrictions. However, despite the present cautiousness on the situation, most Indonesians are still optimistic about the future.
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