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Pension Payments Paint Bleak Economic Picture

Statistics from Social Security System Reveal Massive Layoffs. 6,000 Tourism Workers May Have Lost Their Jobs in First Five Months of 2003.

(6/23/2003) Recent statements by the Bali Manager of P.T. JAMSOSTEK, the operators of the state pension fund, add further credence to the view that the unemployment situation in Bali is indeed bleak.

Quoted in the Indonesian-language Bali newspaper Nusa, John H. Keleng, the head of the Bali JAMSOSTEK office, said that those applying for redemption of their pension monies paid into the system are averaging 70 people every day.

Based on the average number of worker seeking their pension funds and his estimate that 60% of those applying are doing so not for reasons of retirement but because of unemployment, Keleng estimated that some 6.000 tourism worker may have lost their jobs in the period January to May 2003.

In the period January to May, JAMSOSTEK in Bali has paid pension reimbursements totaling Rp. 9.6 billion (approximately US$ 1.16 million) of which Rp. 5.76 billion (approximately US$ 690,000) is thought to be for reasons of termination of employment.