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Indonesian Demographic Bonus Threatened by Unemployment, Sultan Urges Government to Develop Digital Job Training Programme

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Vice Chairman of Indonesian Regional Representative Council (DPD RI) Sultan B Najamudin has asked the government, through the Ministry of Manpower, to intensively develop job training programmes in the digital field for Indonesia’s young generation.

This was conveyed by the former Chairman of HIPMI Bengkulu considering the high threat to Indonesia’s potential and demographic bonus at this time due to unemployment.

Statistics Indonesia (BPS) earlier reported that there were around 9.9 million youth (15–24 years old) not in education, employment, and training (NEET) in Indonesia in 2023.

“We feel that there needs to be a consistent serious effort from the government in developing the quality of skills and competencies in the digital sector for young people, especially Gen Z. The extraordinary potential of this young generation must be empowered intensively so that it does not become a social demographic burden,” said Sultan through his official statement on Monday (20/5).

The potential of our current Gen Z, according to him, is significant in determining the national situation in the medium to long term.

There will be many social and economic risks if the government fails to harness this huge demographic potential.

“The potential and psychology of Gen Z is very vulnerable to be directed towards positive and negative things. Of course, in a certain period of time it will have a big impact on the national situation,” he said.

Therefore, he continued, we hope that the central and regional governments will continue to develop intensive and massive vocational training programmes. Especially competence in the digital field.

“The opportunities and potential of Indonesia’s digital industry still require a large number of reliable human resources. New skills that are much needed by the industry today are content creators, mobile application & technology, digital marketing, graphic design, computer operating systems, and many more,” he said.

In addition, Sultan also encouraged the large potential of Gen Z to be directed towards the development of the agriculture and food sector.

Indonesian young people, he said, are basically good enough in the agribusiness industry.

“The real sector such as agriculture, both at home and abroad, requires a lot of labor. The government needs to find job opportunities in the agricultural industry for skilled labor,” he concluded.

In its latest report, BPS defines NEETs as people aged 15–24 who are outside the education system, not working, and not participating in training. This indicates an unempowered potential labor force.

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