Public Policy Towards the Elderly in Indonesia: Current Policy and Future Directions

Alex Arifianto
JEL codes: 
ISBN 979-3872-22-5

In the past few years, public policy towards the elderly has become an emerging policy issue for Indonesia. With one-third of all Indonesians predicted to be elderly (i.e. aged 60 years or older) in the year 2050, millions of citizens are vulnerable to old age poverty, since many of them will have little extra income (e.g. from savings or pension) to finance their livelihood in old age. At the same time, they will no longer be able to depend exclusively on assistance from their children/other family members as in the past, since the birthrate is declining and family relations are becoming more strained due to continued modernization and social change occuring in the country.
Thus, it is increasingly recognized that a more formal and comprehensive old age security policy is needed in Indonesia. This paper will review the development of such a policy, looking at both past and current policies, and will critically analyze their impact in providing adequate old age security for Indonesians. Finally, the paper will conclude with some recommendations on what Indonesia could do to create a comprehensive aging policy that would protect its elderly population from old age insecurity in the coming decades.